Justin Rhodes Interview

If there’s one thing Justin and Rebekah Rhodes have tapped into, it’s the longing of people to connect with the do-it-yourself culture of homesteading.

The Rhodes are seasoned homesteaders who practice “beyond organic” methods on their 75-acre family farm near Asheville, North Carolina. Justin trained under the highly accredited Geoff Lawton of PRI Australia for his Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) and has studied natural chicken care under popular author Pat Foremen.

As a film producer, author, and teacher – not to mention an expert in permaculture – Justin took his love of teaching and the sustainable movement and wove those interests into making YouTube videos and other resources on self-sufficiency and homesteading skills.  “I help folks learn to work with nature to produce their own sustenance so they can live a more abundant life,” he explains.

Justin wants to take the stress out of homesteading by offering community support in the form of videos, master classes, consultation with experts, and numerous other resources. They address subjects a lot of other homesteaders don’t discuss: the insurance that comes with having males (boars, bulls, roosters, rams, etc.) to ensure the continuity of their food sources; how to humanely and efficiently butcher everything from turkeys to pigs; how to feed chickens without grain; how to use a scythe; and much else.

 

The Justin and Rebekah are raising their four young children to understand and appreciate where their food comes from. “We got into homesteading first as an extension of our creating a healthy lifestyle,” Justin relates. “We got convicted about our health and started transitioning to organics. That became expensive. We could either buy a bunch of kale at the grocery store for $3.50, or we can buy a seed pack of a thousand bunches of kale for $3.50. So we made use of the rural family land we were living on and the rest is history.”

After the Rhodes started making videos, their popularity skyrocketed for a very simple reason. “Our most popular videos usually end up having something to do with addressing common problems like finding something to eat in a unique way while bringing down overall costs,” Justin says. “I think that’s the common theme for our videos on butchering turkeys, how to scythe, how Karl Hammer feeds 600 chickens without grain, and how a normal guy quit his job to start farming.”

The Rhodes never sugar-coat their homesteading journey. They believe in showing it exactly as it is – the good parts and the bad. This, more than anything else, is why viewers can relate. “The most challenging aspects of homesteading can be the lack of experience and knowledge, money, and community,” says Justin. “Since homesteading was dropped a couple of generations ago, it can be a lonely, confusing and expensive journey if you don’t plug into the right resources. That’s largely why we ended up creating community through our videos and product offerings. We created those things for ourselves while offering them to others as well.”

Justin and Rebekah will be the keynote speakers at Lehman’s Country Living Workshop on [Lehman’s will provide time/date/details]. Come listen to wisdom from those who are in the trenches.

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