About

I am a city girl and knew nothing of farming until I bought two baby goats (on a complete whim) to eliminate (by eating) all the poison ivy in my suburban Maryland backyard. (Which they did.) You can read about it here: sierra_club_article

Now, years later, I am an environmental scientist who just left, dropped out (to use an aging hippie reference) to grow food and beauty, simply, with no expense, in a walled hill-town in Umbria. I’m a dirt farmer, an alchemist, turning waste into compost–straw into gold. I save seeds, I make my soil, and then the plants pretty much care for themselves. We grow much of our food, raise chickens and ducks, and have a small olive grove for oil. I’m educated in science but I credit Mother Nature with any success. Slowly we are changing over our dependence on fossil fuel to an off-grid semi-survivalist life style. We heat with our own wood, while working on systems to capture our water and compost all our waste.

As to why I am now in Italy? Lets say that a sense of adventure and a quest for old timey farming practices brought us to the Italian breadbasket. George Bush and the continuing ostrich-like environmental policies of the U.S. certainly helped push us overseas. But after six years here, I am very comfortable with small town life, where I can walk everywhere, really eat locally-grown food, and still train into Rome or Florence for the day when I am seized with a momentary need for big city culture.

2013 Suzanna Gallina

10 comments on “About

  1. WOW!!! Amazingly wonderful to read your blog. Wishing you everything you wish for! With love, Christine.

  2. Bev says:

    Hi Jeri! My friend Ellen told me about your blog. Love that your new life is so vibrant!
    “Fairy Goat Mother”

    • Oh Fairy Goat Mother, my great rescuer when I needed a safe and happy place for my goats!
      So good to hear from you.
      I hope all is well and trust that both your weaving and your farm continue to be as full of inspiration and beauty as I remember them.
      Fondly,
      JS

  3. Your blog is extremely a joy to read! I started my own garden at home just a year ago here in the Philippines with a certain goal in mind: urban farming. Once I get the chance to really get my hands dirty and fix up our place, I’ll definitely share my journey too as a gardener/farmer. Oh and I want to become a farmer as well in the future. I love the simple life.

    • Oh thank you for your kind comments. For me, it is critical that we grow our own food and share with others how simple and (deeply) rewarding this lifestyle is. I think this may be our only future. This movement (a way of life for most until WWII) is bringing a new meaning to eating and acting locally… Best of luck to you! suzanna

      • I definitely agree! Sustainable living is now becoming a mainstream lifestyle, which is great. Some people just don’t know how simple it is to go out of their house and work with what the Earth can provide us. I hope you continue updating your blog! And hopefully, if I can save up for a trip to Italy, I can get to see your farm in person. More power and success to you! Thank you as well for the knowledge and information you bring to the table. It helps. gino

  4. carolyn says:

    I’ve been wanting to lead a similar “slow life” for a very long time; until we are able to make the move, I’ll keep working in my garden, learning how to be more self-sufficient and reading your inspiring blog. Thank you!

  5. ED says:

    Hello to you both,we had the good fortune to visit your farm with friends of yours,Kerry and Julie,Loved your work and found the visit inspirational.At the moment my garden is a canvas and this year looks pretty good even though i say so my self.Next year I will have less canvas and more pantry
    Thanks for the warm welcome,Ed and Michele from Wales.

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