Re: Land Use on Coho Acreage (Nessa Dertnig)
From: Judith Bush (
Date: Mon, 13 Aug 2012 14:52:19 -0700 (PDT)
Nessa, I'm responding from Cobb Hill in Hartland, VT.  I'll be attentive to all 
the replies you get on line, because you are asking good, important questions.  
Cobb Hill is rural (like Belfast), and has functioned with intention re land 
use for farming, agricultural enterprises, and forest stewardship since even 
before our homes were completed in 2002.  I can't possibly wrap up our 
experience in a succinct way right now, so am thinking about good ways to offer 
to share it with you.  Sharing documents about our format for proposals to use 
land, and about annual enterprise reports is just a part of it, and we are 
happy to do that.  Going over what's been hard and easy in more than a decade 
here is 
a longer communication. 
But I do want to mention here that Laura Fitch at Pioneer Valley has done some 
work recently on cohousing communities where farming occurs.  Her work might 
provide some ideas for you.  Also that my husband and I much enjoyed attending 
a day-long session at the recently developing community Katywil in Colrain, MA, 
where land use evolution was the subject.   So I'd suggest contacting them 
about how the community is collaborating on land-based projects even as homes 
there continue to be built.  And you are already hearing from others with 
Related to what Sharon V wrote today on the temporariness or permanence of 
granting use of land, our experience at Cobb HIll is that people investing 
themselves in the work of growing food or raising animals, want "tenure" for 
their projects.  Maybe some things can be short-term experiments, but many 
cannot.  There are big implications for members who aren't present when these 
early projects are launched.  All food for thought.
Judith Bush - 802-436-1488

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