Moving On

By Gérard

The past week saw us transition from Rancho Margot to our second destination, Finca Fruicion.

First, I want to highlight a couple of projects we completed at Rancho Margot.  The first was a compost station made entirely of materials collected in their nearby recycling area.  Turned out well.  We spent the last day layering in leaves, grass clippings, manure, and IMO ( remember indigenous microorganisms we learned about in Thailand). This new structure will be dedicated to producing high quality compost for use in La Huerta (the vegetable garden).


We also tackled some major work in the vegetable garden including moving three green houses (leveling each site before doing so), making many new raised beds, starting and transplanting vegetable seedlings, and landscaping the area around the new site of the main greenhouse/volunteer office and adding an extra covered area along the back side.  All of these projects were amazing team efforts as half a dozen volunteers or more worked together with a remarkable level of positive energy.


Prepping the site before relocating the main greenhouse




Posing in front of new site

It was with mixed feelings that we left Rancho Margot.  It was a great experience all around; We learned a lot about the many moving parts involved in running a premium eco-resort.  Fellow volunteers and staff were fantastic, so was the food and the surrounding Rain Forest.

On December 29, we spent all day riding three buses and two taxis to reach Finca Fruicion.


The Finca (farm) differs in many regards from Rancho Margot.  Here, no guests or tourists, only volunteers and interns live next to the owner family (they have three small children), learning about permaculture and holistic living.  A very family oriented atmosphere with the children, volunteers and staff taking turns cooking and cleaning.  Also, there are way fewer farm animals (one cow, two goats and three ducks hanging out in the pond nearby).  The main building includes the kitchen, community dining room and a few bedrooms, and is an impressive demonstration of cob building techniques. More details will be coming in our next posts to describe this close-to-the-earth stage of our travel. During our stay are helping with the vegetable and herb garden as well as building a bunk bed facility capable of housing up to sixteen visitors! Oh, and the view we get to wake up to every morning is spectacular…


Cool Stuff to share …

  • Living Roofs provide thermal insulation from the sun along with a more natural look.  They also make the buildings invisible in Google satellite pictures 🙂  The vast majority of the Rancho Margot roofs are “alive”.


  • Living Fences are made out of a tree named “Madero Negro.”  This species has the special ability to grow after a simple branch is planted into the ground.  Each stick will grow its own roots, branches and leaves.  It is a great choice for posts in direct contact with the earth as it will not rot and is termite-resistant. Naturally beats pressure-treated lumber!


  • Camouflage – Can you see that bug?


… and a Very Happy New Year to all!


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Kylie
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 05:44:46

    Mark and I love reading about your travels, learnings, contributions, and experiences! Thank you so much for sharing them. Love and hugs to you all!


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