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Evening Rain Farm

Our Farm is a beacon calling the next people who have the resources to adore and adorn her. She offers her full glory and desire to be stewarded by people who revere the land. She yearns to blossom, share her generosity and abundance; feel the weight of human footsteps, hear human laughter, music and appreciation, taste the nutrients blessing her, smell the ripeness, experience the flowing joy…  She is hungry for her highest expression.

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A (not so) Brief History

We were a family run tropical sustainable homestead, permaculture, agroforestry, and simple living model. The experiment began over ten years ago on two adjacent eleven-acre parcels of land with an original canopy of 150′ albezia trees, a mid story of guava and not enough sunlight to sustain an understory. Over the years the land has been designed and transformed into a lush food forest by thousands of generous hours from the past owners, Krista and current owners Scott and Karin, work trade residents and intern volunteers (wwoof-ing program) plus several hundred thousand dollars from Karin for land moving, infrastructure, plantings, fencing, structures (a variety of permanent and agricultural bulidings) etc. Living in a tropical climate provides a level of simplicity in living structures that you can not find in temperate climates. Basically our structural needs are to keep the rain and rodents and insects mostly outside. Our buildings reflect those simple needs. We combine locally harvested poles with commercial building materials in our own designs.

The vision was whether we can create a resilient lifestyle in the tropics in a way that is inspiring, enjoyable, and sustainable. One goal was to provide for our staple food needs on this farm or within our neighborhood (bartering). Our farm is steadily maturing and can now provide the five homesteads with: taro, tropical beans, tropical yam, eggplant, chives, perennial greens, ginger, turmeric, cardamom, lemongrass, pineapple from the gardens; goat’s milk, yogurt and cheese (once provided by our goat herd but now available within our neighborhood); eggs from our two free range flocks; wild pig and wild mangoes from the jungle; breadfruit, coconuts, avocado, lemons, limes, sweet citrus (tangelo, grapefruit, tangerines …), passionfruit, jak fruit, soursop, rollinia, papaya, bananas, grafted mango, coffee, cacao, allspice, black pepper, mac nuts, coconuts, malabar chestnuts from the agro-forestry orchards (see list below for the trees planted).

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Vision for our Farm

▪    We chose to focus on lowering our expenses versus increasing our income. Increasing income usually cost us our time and that was too valuable for us to squander. The systems and  plantings are designed to require minimal labor and financial inputs.
▪    We chose to focus on being self- (then later village-) sufficient. Therefore we planted trees like Melia because it contained a natural pesticide that is more powerful than neem, we planted trees that produced an oil crop, bamboo for timber, black bamboo for furniture, kapok for futon stuffing, a variety of important medicinal plants, acai palms for income and as a super food, enclosed the farm with a clumping bamboo that does not require fencing and can be used as livestock fodder, planted a variety of nutritious starch foods (peach palms, taro, breadfruit varieties, bread nut, cassava, tropical yam, sweet potato, pigeon pea, malabar chestnut, jackfruit seeds, green banana, green papaya, ….); began experimenting with creating flour and value added products (vinegars, dried spices including vanilla beans, acai juice, coffee, cacao, we planted spice trees, created and stocked with several varieties of fish a large pond and a smaller reflecting pond (as a back up for droughts),
▪    We chose the diversity of variety versus mono cropping. Created several pastures for nubian goats and later sheep, with milking barn (unfortunately we mono cropped with wili wili trees and paid the price with “dead” living fence posts, which we later replaced with a variety of bamboo which creates fodder and an impenetrable fence.
▪    We focused on perennial and orchard plantings versus labor intensive temperate climate annuals; on aqua culture using plants that naturally live in water; on letting the nearby papaya fields feed the feral pigs instead of raising them ourselves; on letting our hens and bees be who they naturally are without much interference from us (we like to give them choices instead of limit their choices– preferring to make less work for ourselves).
▪    We designed the option to run the farm without an inverter using diesel generator which can run on coconut oil.
▪    We created a large agricultural library including binders filled with third-world techniques, tool and equipment designs, references, plant data, recipes, traditional tropical guilds …..
▪    The farm’s plantings were designed to support a wide variety of cottage industries (timber bamboo, coconut oil, spices, … tent camping (within ag zoning land use regs))
▪    After great deliberation, we chose to design a main structure, double barrel-vaulted ferro-cement, that was impervious to the tropical nemesis: the termite, used primarily local or recycled materials which would outlive our grandchildren. We were designing a home that did not require expensive and frequent maintenance, and it is wonderfully open, airy and beautiful.

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Our Farm includes two adjacent parcels totaling 22 acres, with the following improvements:

30×30′ custom built concrete barrel-vaulted home, 30×50 ohia post barn, 30,000 gallon ferro-cement water tank, 2,400 watt solar electrical power system, successful work trade and intern program including two agricultural homesteads, two rental structures, fruit tree nursery, website (eveningRainfarm.com), plus basic farm materials, farm tools, minimal furnishings for the intern spaces, rentals and pondhouse, 30′x50′ pond, 30′x7′ pond, carport, and about 1,000 trees, bamboos, palms *(300+ coconuts) and over 14 varieties of mature banana plants. In addition, there are tools, equipment, appliances, materials and furnishings available for sale.

Our neighborhood called Koa’e is a uniquely village-like environment, very supportive of alternative living with a variety of farmsteads including CSA, aquapoinics, grass fed dairy, biochar, korean natural farming poultry/eggs, local farm stands, weekly crop swap, cooperative taro gardens, in addition to the nearby farmers markets (SPACE in Seaview, Uncle Robert’s in Kalapana, Makuu in Keau and one in Pahoa). The natural environment here in Kapoho, near the coast on the windward side of the Big Island of Hawaii is rainy (100″/year) and sunny (the trade winds bring rain through the evenings, night and mornings) and we also have storms that bring rain in the days. We are at 250’ elevation, and four miles from the ocean.

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Farm Income

▪  The farm has over 400 coconut palms planted with ~25 producing racks and each year and each year the number grows. There is a citrus orchard that is fully mature and a wide variety of mature producing avocados, ….
▪    The farm can provide food for the existing five households from the orchards, individual gardens, chicken flocks, feral pigs, pond (perch and tilapia),
▪    Our farm nursery was earning ~$500/month
▪    Our farm easily earns monthly tent structure rental incomes of $400 and $300/month plus an additional $600/month if the ferro cement structure (Pondhouse) is rented. (With these three structures rented, there are still two additional farm homesteads to house residents or work traders)
▪    These two farm homesteads can also house work traders and a farm manager to maintain the farm
▪    Our farm is beginning to earn income of ~$300/month with excess seasonal farm produce. This income currently covers all farm expenses.
▪    Recently Scott Laaback, a resident on our farm has been successfully offering farm to table dinner parties as a source of income :)
▪    Our farm is actually two separate but adjacent parcels with separate tax map codes TMK’s. This allows enormous flexibility to consolidate the two parcels then re-subdivide into a 19-acre and a 3-acre parcel. This 3-acre parcel can be sold for ~$80,000-100,000 based on two recent comps for two 3-acre parcels across the street which sold within the past 6 months
▪    The farm’s plantings were designed to support a wide variety of cottage industries (timber bamboo, coconut oil, spices, …). Our intention was that our farm could support the food, shelter, community, meaningful work and income needs of all residents. We have a wide variety of farm equipment intended to support these cottage industries available for sale (commercial quality oil expeller, fo.od mill, honey extractor, wine and vinegar making supplies, dairy and cheese-making supplies …)

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Photo Albums
Farm Photos

More Farm Photos (if link is broken you can choose post to the left)

Ferro Cement Barrel Vault- Construction

Food From the Land

Tour of the Farm

click here to download the Evening Rain Farm map

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Below is a list of trees in the ground

  • over 150 banana mats of 18 varieties
  • 280 coconuts (not select)
  • about 20 dwarf coconuts
  • 16 breadfruit trees (5 grafted varieties, plus samoan, tahitian and hawaiian)
  • 12 grafted mangos of 11 varieties
  • 15 grafted avocados of 15 varieties
  • 15-20 seedling avocados
  • about 16 grafted tangerines and tangelos of 5 varieties
  • 1 longan
  • 3 star apple
  • 4 abiu
  • 3 allspice
  • 1 wi apple
  • 2 dwarf wi apple
  • about 6 select mountain apple
  • 1 jacote
  • 2 grafted jakfruit
  • about 15 seedling jakfruit
  • 1 grafted chempejak
  • over 30 peach palms
  • 3 paradise nuts
  • 6 Akee
  • 6 mac nuts
  • 6 kapok
  • 2 grafted lemon
  • 1 seedling lemon
  • 3 grafted limes
  • 2 grafted oranges
  • 2 grafted pomelo
  • 5 grafted rambutan
  • 2 grafted durians
  • 6 seedling durian
  • 5 seedling mangosteens
  • 2 grafted mamey americana
  • 10 noni
  • 32 coffee
  • 26 cacao
  • 5 breadnut
  • 1 black sapote
  • 2 ice cream beans
  • 5 kikui nut
  • 6 rollinia seedlings
  • 17 soursop
  • 1 cashew
  • 6 brazilian cherry
  • 4 marang
  • 1 Pedali
  • 3 monkeypods
  • 2 Ipe (south american ironwood)
  • over 12 mulberry
  • 15 Melia azedirach
  • 2 chupa chupa
  • 2 custard apple
  • 5 rainbow eucalyptus
  • 1 bilimbi
  • 4 jaboticaba
  • 3 grafted chico sapote
  • 5 surinam cherry
  • 1 cola nut
  • 20 chakruna
  • 1 tropical apricot
  • 1 flying saucer tree
  • 3 garcinia lancifolia
  • 2 grafted atemoya
  • 1 acerola cherry
  • 2 Lau Lau tree
  • 1 Brosimum alicastrum
  • over 30 malabar chestnut
  • 5 pachyra  insignis
  • 1 calamondin
  • 1 kumquat
  • 1 pace mamey sapote
  • 2 lemon drop mangosteen

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Bamboo

  • 12       D brandisii
  • 3         Guadua angustifolia
  • 39       Guadua  angustifolia ‘less thorny’
  • 2          Bambusa textilis
  • 50       B textilis ‘gracilis’
  • 10       B textilis “fascia’
  • 210     B malingensis
  • 15       ‘Buddha Belly’
  • 90        B multiplex
  • 3          B lako (black)
  • 6          Giganticloa atroviolacea (black)
  • 4          B albociliata
  • 9          B hirosi
  • 3          Khasyanum
  • 1          B ‘riveriorum’
  • 5          B oliveriana
  • 2          G latifloris
  • 9          D asper
  • 3          B luteostriata
  • 22        B perveriablis
  • 1           “bali golden
  • 4          Giganticloa species
  • 1           Bambusa species “java”
  • 2           otatea “mexican weeping”
  • 1           “monastery bamboo”

Assai palms

  • about 20   Euterpe oleracea
  • about 30   Euterpe edulis
  • 2                  Euterpe olearacea dwarf

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