Every ROOT CELLAR needs this! Off Grid | Homesteading

We live in a log cabin with no public utilities. We recently installed a root cellar so we can have a place to store our food from one harvest to the next. We grow about 90% of our own food, If you are going to install a root cellar you will need a air intake and outlet for the air exchange inside the cellar.
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About OFF GRID with DOUG and STACY:
We moved to our 11 acres in 2011 from a large city in the Midwest with zero carpentry and farming skills. We live with no solar / wind power / public water or well. We share our adventure to a sustainable life, growing our own food from vegetables to meat. We post videos DAILY and they range from HOW TO to EVERYDAY LIFE and NUTRITION on the off grid homestead. We were city folks just like you probably and wanted to enjoy life and have more control over our food. We share food recipes as well as natural remedies.

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45 comments

  • Cuba's Automotive

    Well, they may be noisy but I like hearing the guineas. They put a smile on my face…. no worries here.

  • Vincent Alaimo

    I appreciate you, your perseverance, your traditional progression, your teaching the way that you do things and get things done as well the way I feel tranquil observing you.
    Your light is amazing

  • Karen Buckner

    Looking good, Doug. You’ve come a long way since your city-livin’ days! Good advice about pacing in summer heat. Heat exhaustion is no fun. Looking forward to the next video.

  • Geoff Outdoors

    Chinking looks good! Stay cool man!!!!

  • RoseThistleArtworks

    The whole thing looks great! You seem like you would be a great dad even though you grew up without one. That was surprising that you’ve learned all this on your own pretty much. One tip that I learned the hard way is to make sure there is a slight slope away from the building for water to run the other way off the slab, away from the building. It doesn’t take much to have constant water causing a problem if it doesn’t run off that slab away from the building.

    • OFF GRID with DOUG & STACY

      Yep, that’s what the level is doing 👍 thanks for showing up

    • RoseThistleArtworks

      @OFF GRID with DOUG & STACY I figured you knew that. Just wanted to put it out there for the benefit of people to learn from my mistake on projects like that. Thank you for sharing so much of what you’ve learned.

  • Pamela A

    I love hearing the sounds of the homestead!!!!

  • Kimberly Schiele

    Where is your other puppy dog im only seeing 1 now. I loved it when they paired up together and followed their daddy areound. ❤😊

  • D. Kirchner

    I love being off grid thanks Doug for the update we love the video’s brother.

  • Bacon, Eatmore

    I bet that outdoor shower was nice after that gravel shoveling.

  • David Traver

    For not having a father growing up, you seem to have over come the things he may have taught you. I was taught a lot of things by my father and was lucky to have him. I have no children of my own, but have three step sons that don’t seem to want to learn anything in life. I would love to show them the things I know, but they’re more interested in playing games and are too busy with things that seem totally foolish and a waste of time. They’re in their 20’s and early 30’s and feel it’s better to play video games and other stupid role playing games. I’m about to retire, leave the city and get back to my country side. I’ve worked hard for what I have, saved everything I could and now I’m going to do what I want. They say they want to come to the country, but if they think they are going to live off me, they’re wrong. It may sound like a mean thing, but I feel they wouldn’t put in the work and want to be on their own. Sorry to rant, you’re doing an awesome job and teaching me things I’m interested in. Thanks so much!!!

    • Oma Am

      Marylouise Amen!

    • Billy Breuer

      The bible says you don’t work you don’t eat . The greatest thing I got from my parents was nothing.

    • Marylouise

      Billy Breuer many should not bare children.
      I had one also.
      Mama called us inside and told us to tell ours goodbye. I remember thinking to myself, crap can I help you with your bags!?!
      We lived in Memphis Tennessee and he drove across the bridge into Arkansas so he wouldn’t have to help her raise us.
      Good riddance to rubbish.
      There are three of us. We loved the man we called daddy. He didn’t Love us……….

    • Oma Am

      @Marylouise

      Wow!

    • Billy Breuer

      @Marylouise I am sorry for dad but that is not what l ment, l have nine siblings my parents grew up in the 30s and 40s they taught us good work ethics. They didn’t give us everything.

  • Greg Stenzoski

    Hey Doug, everything is coming along great! I’m always happy to see your latest updates of whatever you’ve got going on. Really looking forward to the rest of the learning center build, as well as the progress of your woodlot activities. Stay safe and keep cool brother! Blessings to you and Stacy from Atlanta!

  • Stephen Riley

    Doug, A demonstration of another life skill…. to curb the mind to match the constraints of the body and avoid stars before the eyes! Overall, you will achieve your goals, recover quicker and feel better. If you spend it wisely, taking your time is your best asset. You do inspire. Your last video got me back to the allotment to complete where I left off after I got into your situation, cutting grass and moving soil. By the time I’d done all the preparation I had nothing left for the planting! But they are in now!!😀🌱🌱🌱🌱. Storm Francis is blowing a gale around the house right now. Lots of overnight rain forecast. Keep yourselves safe. Regards to Stacy. Regards Stephen.

  • Opy Brook

    Soooo, Doug. You’re in Missouri, lots of 🐍 snakes😵. How often do you find them in your wood lot there? Ugh! I don’t deal with snakes at all! Which is why I live in northern Indiana😁
    Shalom and Blessings💓 to you both;
    Brook👩‍🌾🍏🍎 and
    Opy🐕💖😀

  • ron smith

    Remind people to always slope at 6″ over 10′ away from your foundation ( that’s MINIMUM code here – I like more and further slope) For your base and finished grade. And no closer than to within 8″ of your framing (again I like more)
    Shed your water away – maybe even slope your rock also – just pour the slab level and less than your interior slab floor or crawl by as much as an emergency will require. That also helps to keep your interior slab dryer. (and/or crawl space) Please make a crawl space high enough for repair and/or future working space. Use creative slope Etc. if you want to reduce exterior steps. it’s why every site was a fun puzzle – LOL
    If a slab, think about a raised/heated slab, or at least get it high enough for the finished grade slope away. Use compacted #78 CLEAN – it can be compacted to about a 97% solid. More than enough.
    I dig trenches and install sock covered slotted (french type) drain pipes every 10′ under my interior slab to act as collection and drains to keep my interior slab dryer also (sloped away into a trench and then away again from trench) enough to drain away any water wanting to collect under the slabs. Put fabric under your stone base and trenches, it keeps your stone more stable – like a driveway is built.This also helps with runoff and water migration in your exterior yard soils,and keeps the soil under your slab dryer. ( I also very slightly slope my dirt cut towards trench – gravity is a great partner in all this, thxs Isaac)
    I also use 5500 PSI and higher for any concrete on the ground (even on a rock base) as this higher PSI concrete approaches water tight concrete specs. You need to work with your supplier to make sure it’s delivered and not just made at that PSI. Temperature and time in truck and the number of turns the concrete truck spins can reduce PSI in delivery. (I would use 7000+ PSI for my personal basement but I believe in overbuilding because fixing buried concrete is COSTLY and I live in a coastal area. You only get 1 shot at the most important part of your home – the foundation…….
    ESPECIALLY in below grade, sloped crawl space or basement applications !!! (turn a sloped crawl into usable space with a door and a little strategic digging) Only backfill with #68 CLEAN stone with fabric between stone and outside dirt. (fabric on top of stone under finished grade also to keep fine sediment from clogging stone over time) use fabric (and stone) on the outside of any concrete (even just footers) between it and dirt always. Normal PSI concrete and footers can WICK water. Notice some outside edges (and discolored interior concrete) of basement slabs…. Notice the basement walls that need sealing….. Gravity drops water to stone, thru stone – then to drain – and away from living space. Slope solid discharge pipe away from bottom of stone/fabric trench (trench, stone and pipes runs deeper and perpendicular to under slab pipes at lowest part of foundation or along the walk out walls) (lay trench discharge pipe on fabric and stone and covered in stone and fabric and then finished grade) and put wire mesh then large stones to keep animals out of pipe. (This stone around pipe also acts as a relief route in case of pipe clog)
    Watch the water run out that pipe – you will be amazed. Sometimes in no slope apps a stone filled (larger CLEAN stones) wide well with a sump pump can be your end of slope destination. Better than having a sump pump inside and you keep EVERYTHING (floor, walls and even your framing package dryer) (easy design)
    Monitor the moisture content in the framing of the home, your lumber yard should be able to tell you what your wood should stabilize at over time.
    (It takes a while after you close it in and start running Hvac)
    This may seem a lot but 400+ basements in coastal VA. has convinced me. And I’m not selling anything , I retired !!!!!!!
    AND not every builder agreed and some just did it their own way. Then I would point it out and let them assume the explanation and liability.
    It’s your home, it’s the FOUNDATION of your HOME – and I just hit some high points – do it right, not fix it later kinda thing.
    Spend your money on your foundation – you can always buy a better refrigerator later but not a better foundation, but then I’m biased.
    A raw piece of land and an engineered set of plans is a great puzzle. Live, dead,spread and point loads are ALMOST everything you need…. LOL Get a soil report (with borings) and compaction test before you even buy the land so you know if there are hidden construction cost you need to know. I accept no liability here – I took a structural engineers stamped plans and modified them and had him/her stamp my design changes.
    I did and insisted overseeing the work, step by step. You have to – be carefull.
    I could go on – it’s so much more convoluted then it was ever before but also if your are building a HOME you can’t just take it to a shop to get it fixed. Make sure it will always be there for you and even your grandchildren without needing unnecessary repairs. (and they won’t be cheap)
    Let them say – YEP my grandpa built this.
    AND I’m now retired with little to do – I will now have that shot of bourbon on the porch since the sun is going down……… or 2……. or something

    PS – this is only part and random thoughts and 2 finger typing, there is a lot more and every site is different……. my grandchildren run screaming from the room when grandpa turns on any electronic device. So I claim no responsibility for anything goofy or needs clarifying/correcting.

    • Rebekah O'Neill

      Also, remove the plant material within the form. It will take up space, rot and then leave a weak spot.

    • ron smith

      @Rebekah O’Neill True dat

    • Chris Caahbaugh

      Is always wise to overbuild your base and have good water control plans.. 👍 …too many these days just make a Foundation or slab that lasts about enough time for them to sell the dang thing…
      I think I chipped a tooth grinding my teeth watching this 1 being built…
      (Most homeowners insurance policy if they see this video will instantly deny a claim) if 1 would occur..
      1 things for certain that slab gonna crack like it was made from chalk in short time…

  • awesome sauce 753

    Oh cool, looking forward to seeing more about the off grid washing machine set up, and all of it really. Chinking is looking great 🙂

  • tommystock64

    I hope your forms aren’t perfectly level .
    I’m thinking surely you’d know to set them to have runoff . If not something to think about , or not .

  • The Nakid Gardeners

    Doing a great job. I would stick some red board against your structure for when you pour and dowel some rebar with epoxy. That way when you pour your pad it will act as one. Decreases your chance of pad from shifting away from the building years to come. At least that is how the soil and ground are in Texas. Great video.

  • lyn smith

    Its looking great. Time to stop, have a shower and sit in the shade with a big jar of haymakers punch.

  • Brandon Beckemeyer

    A tip that makes striking off the concrete easier, when driving the stakes drive them below the top of your form so they don’t get in the way of strike off the concrete. Great video and thanks for sharing

  • Kevin Strieter

    Fantastic! It looks like it’s really coming along. I haven’t commented in a while been dealing with my homestead. Currently we have sheep, pigs, and chickens. Because of the pandemic I am gonna home school 3 of my kids this year. Which takes more out of my day, but good for them. I’ve always put my kids first. My current projects are putting in permanent fencing around the garden. Then I’m going to put of 2 wire electric fencing for the pigs. I want them to be pasture raised. Last project for this year will be to weatherize my workshop so I can use it all year long.
    I’m 7 years away from my last kid going off to college. Not sure what the future holds after that. Great work, love the videos.

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