Help our family with a forest garden project in Central Portugal



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  • Descripción


    Travelling family looking for help with a new, Forest Garden project :

    After 30 years of travelling under sail, we've decided that it's time to put down some roots. Tree roots! The world needs more trees - and we, meanwhile, need a place where we can grow our own food. So we've moored the family on a mountainside in Portugal, and we're planting an area of native forest on one hillside, and on the adjacent abandoned terraces we're planting a mixed orchard (fruit trees, nut trees, berry-bearing shrubs, etc). We've also started growing our own veg, and we have some chickens. Oh, and two stray cats which have adopted us. In the future we hope to have sheep and maybe - just maybe - llamas...
    Our long-term hope is to run the place as a very low-key retreat centre, with a resident Buddhist monk or nun.

    Setting up a place like this is a lot of work for just one young man and his aging parents, so we're looking for help.
    We're looking for people who would like to put trees in the ground; help with the irrigation; do some weeding; put roofs on the old stone ruins; operate the strimmer, to keep the brambles at bay... and so forth.

    We're also hoping for some companionship and conversation! After a lifetime of travelling we're very accustomed to being part of a mobile, flowing community - an infinite fellowship of people of all races and cultures and ages and backgrounds, who consider the whole planet to be their home and for whom No Fixed Abode is an address to be proud of. In short, we love our new lifestyle - we love the fact that we're doing something meaningful and worthwhile, for the health of the planet - but we miss the company of like-minded souls who drift through our ambit.
    We would also be very happy to share the project on a long-term basis - IF we are so lucky as to meet a couple or a family who seem to belong here.

    We are all vegetarian and all non-smokers.
    Our first language is English, but we can also get by in Portuguese, Spanish, and French.
    - Mum is an artist and a Buddhist, but currently without the time to practice either. She is the driving force behind the plan to build meditation cells in the woods some day (along with a studio, an outdoor lounge with a fire-pit, and all sorts of other good things - WHEN we have the time...)
    - Dad is a mechanic. He likes digging ponds and watering the trees.
    - Son (aged 30) is proficient with electronics and computing but nowadays spends most of his time building stone walls, pruning trees, or installing irrigation pipes. He is the MD of the project.
    We all enjoy hiking, when we have the time.
    And we like sailing.........................

    The adventure on offer would suit someone fit. This hillside is very steep!
    A lover of wildlife would be very happy here. The entire valley below the cottage has been abandoned for decades. Absolutely nobody ever goes there apart from us, and even we have only had time to explore a tenth part. As a result, it is home to many species of woodland bird and also to all sorts of mammals and reptiles and amphibians. In effect, it's a hundred-hectare wildlife reserve.
    Buzzards, eagles, and ravens sail over us as we work. Lizards scamper along the walls; snakes slip away through the grass. Newts, frogs and toads have set up home in our pond. Salamanders emerge from the gutters at night when it rains. Foxes, mongooses, fallow deer, and jabali (wild boar) visit our land far more often than we would wish; and there are also genets and stoats (or possibly pine martin) on the lower terraces. In the places where we almost never go, there are red deer, and we once saw a badger. There used to be wolves here, seventy years ago when the land was in use. Maybe there still are...

    Ideally, we would eventually like to find someone - an individual or a couple, perhaps - who can be trusted to look after this place while we take a break and go sailing. This would entail feeding the chickens, cuddling the cat, and - most important of all - watering the baby trees if the rain fails to fall while we are away.
    In return, you get to live in our rustic cottage with its amazing view (and no bathroom) and its opportunities for rambling, painting, and just chilling.

    There is also the possibility of some adventures under sail, for the right person - because now that the youngest member of the family has left home to do her own thing, we have a spare cabin.
    The boat is currently in the Pacific and is ready to carry us to wherever we whim. Fiji? Australia? Chile? Canada? Perhaps we'll discover another 'paradise', somewhere, and put down some more tree roots!

    If any of this appeals - if you'd like to plant trees, or look after the place for a few weeks, or come sailing - please drop us a line and tell us all about yourself.

  • Tipos de ayuda y oportunidades de aprendizaje

    Tipos de ayuda y oportunidades de aprendizaje

    Ayuda en proyectos ecológicos
    Proyectos de construcción y bricolaje
    Cuidado de animales
    Cocinar para toda la familia
    Mantenimiento general

  • Intercambio cultural y oportunidades de aprendizaje

    Intercambio cultural y oportunidades de aprendizaje

    Since our home is in a small, friendly village, visitors have the chance to get to know the traditional Portuguese way of life, and they also have the opportunity to learn Portuguese at the daily get-togethers. Volunteering also presents a useful learning opportunity for those who are considering similar projects (ie. growing our own food; the restoration of abandoned land for the creation of a 'Food Forest'; the planting of a forest of native trees on a steep hillside; the restoration of old schist buildings).

  • Ayuda


    We're looking for people who would like to put trees in the ground; help with the irrigation; do some weeding; operate the strimmer, from time to time, to keep the brambles at bay - and so forth. We're also hoping for some companionship and conversation. Extra points if you like to cook and can share in that chore!

  • Idiomas

    Idiomas hablados
    Inglés: Fluido
    Español: Fluido
    Portugués: Intermedio
    Francés: Principiante

    Este anfitrión ofrece intercambio de idiomas
    Este anfitrión ha indicado que está interesado en compartir su idioma o aprender otro.
    Ponte en contacto con él para obtener más información.

  • Alojamiento


    Our home is a tiny hovel, but we can offer accomodation in a nearby house. Both our cottage and the house are very basic, with only cold water and composting toilets. The house has a shower with a gas water-heater. (In the cottage, we still have to use a tub in front of the wood-buring stove.) Camping in the woods is also an option for those who are not afraid of the wild boar, the red deer, the foxes, and the badgers.

    Food and wine will be provided, of course.

  • Un poco más de información

    Un poco más de información

    • Acceso a Internet

    • Acceso a Internet limitado

      Acceso a Internet limitado

    • Tenemos animales

    • Somos fumadores

    • Puede alojar familias

  • Puede acoger a nómadas digitales

    Puede acoger a nómadas digitales

    Este anfitrión ha indicado que le encanta acoger a nómadas digitales.

  • Espacio para aparcar autocaravanas

    Espacio para aparcar autocaravanas

    We don't have any flat land, ourselves, but we are confident that we could arrange for a smallish campervan to park under the trees at the top of the village. And for bigger vans there is always the 'baldios' (common land), with a splendid view of the surrounding countryside.

  • Podría aceptar mascotas

    Podría aceptar mascotas

    Dogs are welcome ONLY if they can be guaranteed not to chase free range cats and chickens or to fight with the resident dogs.

  • ¿Cuántos voluntarios puedes hospedar?

    ¿Cuántos voluntarios puedes hospedar?

    Más de dos

  • ...

    Horas esperadas

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Número de referencia de anfitrión: 617855357937