Re: Land Use on Coho Acreage
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Sun, 12 Aug 2012 06:23:58 -0700 (PDT)
On Aug 10, 2012, at 6:46 AM, Nessa Dertnig <nessa [at]> 

> 4) Does any community out there have no structure at all -- no proposal 
> process, no reviewing -- just a "get out there and grow" attitude -- and how 
> has that worked? 

I'm sure a lot of people do this and that it breeds underground grumbling 
unless the community is very small and close-knit so there are no 
communications gaps. In larger communities, rumors and lack of information can 
lead to unhappiness.

I would suggest formal agreements even if they are rather vague because you 
don't have very much information. 

Do an initial exploratory temporary trying out of things, but write it down and 
include a review date. This is a good time to begin because they will be 
finished before spring planting season begins. Remember that nothing is 

My personal take on farming is that it is hard, hard work and that people are 
very romantic about it. You don't want to do anything permanent that either 
ties them into something they want to get out of but have fought for so they 
can't or have something out there not really being done well or making anyone 

Aong sentence that might be how people will feel. Long and confused.

> 5) Land use agreements -- apparently we can't actually "lease" land legally 
> to people, but what has been done in terms of agreements between the 
> community and a farmer for how long a farmer gets the use of the land? 

Why can't you lease land? If there is a legal definition of lease in your state 
that prohibits this, there must be some other form of use fee the whole 
community could benefit from. Having land costs money. If only a few are using 
it, is it okay with everyone that everyone pay those costs?

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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