One person lives alone with access to a small patch of useful land. They have to grow all their own food and survive indefinitely.
- This small patch of fertile soil is the only useful land. No grazing, everything around them is basically rocks.
- They have averagely rich and deep topsoil, access to water, and a temperate climate (e.g. England, Germany, Oregon).
- Soil erosion will be negligible.
- They have access to simple hand tools, but not chemicals, motors, or electricity.
- They have seeds for any plants you could name, and a minimal stash of food to survive until crops come in.
- They have materials such as wood and plastic.
- No fertilizer, but they can recycle their waste.
- Assume no complete disasters, predators, etc, but there will be loss to pests, rot, and poor weather.
- They have cool, dark, almost-airtight places to store food, but no salt, vinegar, or other preservatives unless they make them from scratch.
- This person is physically active, so needs 2,000-3,000 kcal/day.
- The goal is to survive indefinitely with good health. Decades at least.
How small could this patch of land be?
To what extent could they make this a closed loop? Will the soil eventually become unusable even if they compost their food scraps, faeces, and urine?
What strategies would be effective at this small scale? Does it make sense to plant homogeneous crops or strive for diversity? Does it make sense to have crop rotation? Does it make sense to divide the soil and e.g. alter the pH of different sections? Does it make sense to cultivate things which will not produce for years?