Green Wizards Is Now On Facebook

David Trammel's picture

Ok I bit the bullet and set up a Green Wizards group on FB.

For now I'm the only one who can put up posts. I want to get a few more core principles and tutorial posts up before I start letting people add content. Stop by and follow us if you can.

Facebook is one of the things I have been avoided as part of LESS. I know other people use it but I don't and won't.
I am concerned that a facebook Green Wizards will suck all the goodness out of this one and it will end up withering away. I really hope not.
Thank you for all you do here David.

Sweet Tatorman's picture

I second your thoughts on this 100%. I am not and never have been on any of the contemporary social media and plan to keep it that way.

I don't do Facebook.

I hope you keep this site going, but if you have the energy to keep only one site running, keep this one.

I used to read Sharon Astyk faithfully but she moved to Facebook as it was easier (IIRC) to post pix. I stopped reading her because I didn't want to do Facebook.

The other issue is that Facebook is a walled garden. They can and have banned posters and sites if they 'don't meet their standards'. There's that Italian writer, Ugo ?? who writes on collapse. Facebook banned him and he's back at a regular blogsite. Again, assuming I'm remembering correctly, Facebook didn't like what he had to say about limits. Like, that there are some.

But in the end, it's your site and your work so you get to decide.

I also join those who dissent against providing any content of any type whatsoever to any of the giants of social media. While I respect how you wish to run your forum and the groups you're in, count me as one of the many who would not like to see energy from here split to benefit these companies' networks.

David Trammel's picture

I can understand some of your feelings, but after a decade of running this site, we're at a point that to fulfill what Greer envisions Green Wizards to be, a toolkit for people in the Collapse, we either need to grow the membership numbers and traffic or we shut down.

ClareBroommaker's picture

I'm surprised to hear of this need for growth and probably don't have a clue as to why the need. I read your hopes to found housing and gardening within an old store and parking lot, so maybe that is related to the need for growth. It might be to increase the chances of being seen by others who'd like to try the idea. I don't know. I'll just sit back and see what happens.

David Trammel's picture

Clare, its simple. I'm running out of the resources to keep this site as a weekend project. It runs me $75 a month in hosting and software, and hours of maintenance and upkeep time. When I was working I could spend both. Now that I'm retired and Social Security is my only income, I don't.

I can grow this site to the point it pays for itself while it accomplishes what Greer originally thought Green Wizards could be, or accept that it won't be more than a vanity project and shrink it back to a free site. If its going to be just that, then I'd rather focus my efforts elsewhere. Because of the nature of this website's software, doing either is going to be several months of lots of time copying posts again.

I'd like to leave something when I'm gone with all of this. I can justify the commitment, the effort and the time if it does.

I'm very sorry to hear you have to pay that much per month - it strikes me as way too much!

My vote would be to pay $5/month to host it on DigitalOcean using free software, keeping regular backups offsite in case of hacking/damage, and the minimal maintenance your web guy can do such as making sure the software is up to date and periodically taking those backups. Or you might even find community hosting providers who give discounts and tech support to nonprofits, if this is structured as one.

Well, I hope it goes on Facebook as you would like. I distrust it. I still have an account on FB, but I seldom use it and almost never post anything other then birthday greetings.

With all due respect, I think "either we grow or we shut down" is a pretty fierce binary, also I think you could possibly apply the rule of thumb, " the opposite of one bad idea is another bad idea". What metric are you using to measure the success of this venture? How big will be big enough?

I have also come to distrust the notion that organizations have to grow. I am currently watching the community garden organization that manages the community garden where I rent plots "grow" to a multi-million dollar non-profit organization so they can build a new campus that will house all the things they think will help people get into gardening. Because of that glamorous project, there has not been the time nor attention given to new gardeners or even to the old ones that makes it a "community". Granted, COVID has put a spanner in the spokes and unfortunately the leadership of this organization has gone overboard on all of the usual "preventative" measures to the point, we gardeners couldn't meet together in the garden for any group project or social get together even if we wanted to. Hows that for loosing sight of your purpose? It makes me sad. They were doing just fine before and in fact there were at least two gardens that always had surplus plots and were under utilized which is why my garden buddy and were able to get as many as we have to grow as much as we have.

I am not saying that this will happen to you or the organization that you are planning, but it is worth bearing in mind that once you get to a certain size, then there are other masters that have to be satisfied before you can satisfy your purpose. It seems to me that you have grown this site just fine and that there have been a flock of new members of late and that you have fulfilled your purpose of getting the ideas of Green Wizardry out there in a small and very useful way. All managed by you, no donners to keep satisfied, no social media censors to satisfy, no federal regs to satisfy in establishing for 501c3, nor tax forms to fill out. You have kept it very simple and humble and I think quite successful.

I offer this as my observations of other non-profit organizations I know about and what I have learned by participating in them at various levels. It isn't meant as a challenge to your plans or even a critique. As Teresa said, it is your site and you will do as you see fit.

David Trammel's picture

I appreciate the words, truly, Teresa. And yes I've seen here locally a non-profit get off track. Hopefully it won't happen here, but I trust the old crew will remind me if I stray to far. I'm not planning any whole sale changes over night.

BTW, the new members are a result of my time on FB. Lots of people looking to learn what we teach. I get that people don't like FB but it does have its usage in this case.

Ten years of doing this is a long time. Ten years in the future is a long time as well. Things will change as time goes by, but I hope they change for the better. And we're not going to make any big changes overnight.

I would be willing to pay for a subscription to help you keep this site running.

$75 a month plus hours of your time?!?!?!?
We don't spend nearly that much for our three websites but then we also don't host a forum.

I do understand the need for constant moderation. We've enabled comments on my Agatha Christie reviews for months and to date, I've received one legitimate comment and a mountain of spam from bots.

I'd kick in a few $$ to keep you going.
Electricity, hosting, and time all have to be paid for.

I also did not consider that you've been getting new members via Facebook; people who need what we have to offer.

ClareBroommaker's picture

I do not, not have I ever used Facebook. I did go try to look at something you linked to there once previously and could not view it. I just went now to see what Green Wizards content has been put there. I can kind of peek through FB's own promotion to see it. But I will not be signing up there to view or participate.

Question: Will we be able to know which content here will wind up on Facebook? I don't want any of my comments there.

David Trammel's picture

I have no plans to move any posts or comments to FB. If anything I'll be pulling content, like the recent guest post on Chicken coops from FB to here. If I decide something here is interesting enough to post to FB, I will contact that person and ask permission to use it, just as I do with any other guest post.

I do plan on posting on Wednesday's a summary of main blog post, the titles of the three most active topics here, and the weekly Ecosophia post as links. To view them people will have to come here. Letting people know of the current activity on a website the page is a common way to get visitors. Its not anything a person who visits the site off of Google wouldn't see.

That sounds like a good compromise: teasers on Facebook and the real meat here.

On that subject, as a semi-public person already (thanks to Peschel Press) you can post over my long pieces on Solar tubes, insulating my desk, and your review of our two books to Facebook.

As long as I don't have to go there!

David Trammel's picture

I'm not sure how many people realize how frustrating sometimes it is to try and get outside content like guest blog posts or content I can share here. For every ten people I privately ask, one might say yes. And that one, 3 weeks later when I check back with them, usually decides its too much work. I love the people who have done guest posts, just wish I had more of them.

Its not so much the under the hood software stuff that takes alot of my time, its making the weekly blog posts or the big forum topics. Those can take 2-3 days. Right now I've got Monday and Tuesday after work scheduled for content creation, and that's starting to work for me. That and preliminary software set up for the new site. I think people here will be really happy once that goes live.

The forum is much better. You'll be able to see active topics, as well as unanswered comments both on the main page as well as in their own separate page. Here's a screen capture.

More to add, and I'll be asking for some testers soon. Its even a bit retro and should format well for viewing on a phone or tablet too.

add photo: 
David Trammel's picture

There is some confusion, I am not closing this site down. If anything I'm going to be expanding it and getting us more articles and tutorials. As well as a new and better theme in the first part of next year.

The Facebook account is just one more way to attract new members. My general FB account has gotten us about 1-2 member a week the last few months as I comment in the dozen or so garden and prepping groups I visit regularly. I expect the FB business account should attract similar numbers.

Like social media or not, many people, especially the younger ones we need to continue Green Wizards into the next few decades is on Facebook and Instagram.

We've now got an Instagram account.
Like everything else, it takes time to make and post items. It's a maw that must be fed.

I make most of our posts using Canva but Bill also makes a few. He does all the uploading.

Instagram, in my extremely limited experience is best for photos and short snippets of text, like a quote. It doesn't seem to like anything longer, although I have seen short videos being posted. I never watch them so I can't say how well that works. I do, as a plankton-sized Instagram user, now look at multiple photos in one post.

If you have questions about Instagram for absolute beginners, I might be able to help (but not with the posting).

I have learned two critical requirements if you post a series of photos:

1) you can't use more than ten (10) photos for any given post.
2) you must label the photos so that they come up in the order you want them to. That is, I make our long posts in Canva (using their free service). Each individual photo/post has a spot for a name. The name MUST begin 01, 02, 03, etc. no matter how else you label it so the photos show up in the correct order. Otherwise, Instagram decides what order they should be in.

If you want to see ours here's the link:

I dunno if Instagram has made the slightest difference to our bottom line. Some people love it.

Instagram is definitely easier and less time-consuming than TikTok!

David Trammel's picture

The same if I tweet please.

TikTok will eat hours of time. The people who seem to succeed on TikTok (in my extremely limited experience) are bright, bubbly, energetic and willing to put in the hours of time making and editing those darn videos.

I am actually on TikTok because my local bookstore has a clerk who makes TikTok videos for the store and she asked me if I wanted to make some to advertise my books. I did and swiftly learned that while I don't have a problem talking, keeping my talk to less than 45 seconds was challenging. I let other people make TikTok videos.

As for Instagram, I don't know if it would work at all for Green Wizards. It's very visual; all snapshots of this and that taken out of context.

The ONLY reason (for now) that I can see for setting up an Instagram account for Green Wizards is to homestead the name so someone else doesn't use it.

Twitter is a cesspool and is best avoided at all times.

David Trammel's picture

Hadn't thought about that. Good suggestion. I've got the ones for the website but didn't think to get them for the emergent media. I'll fix that tomorrow.

I am new here, but a long time user of reddit (in fact how I found this site was another reddit user pointing me in this direction). I went ahead and created a subreddit there for GreenWizardry ( and linked it back to this site with the same thought: just one more way to attract new members. I am also a Facebook user and, with your permission, I would be happy to repost on reddit whatever you post on FB.

David Trammel's picture

Thank you for setting up the account. I haven't explored the various social medias that much but need to I guess now that we're expanding. Reddit is one I'm familiar with only thru a Youtube channel. A vblogger there, finds sci-fi stories and his channel is him reading them aloud. Interesting take on story telling, a combination of the old and the new.

David Trammel's picture

I was going to do this in a separate post but I'll do it in this one, since everyone is reading it. This is how I envision Green Wizards to develop over the next decade.

In 2022 I plan on setting up a 503c non-profit for Green Wizards based here in St Louis. I have several people in mind to join as board members. Ownership of the domain names and website will be transferred to the non-profit. This needs to be done so that if anything happens to me this project will continue.

I've always planned Green Wizards as a multi-generational project which will continue past my own time. At 64 I figure I've got about 15 years to get things set up for that.

In late 2022 to early 2023 the first in the planned series of Green Wizards workbooks should be ready to be published. It should cover the First and Second Circles' material. I plan a 6-8 book series that will cover the entire toolkit of skills and knowledge we discuss here. I expect it will take about ten years, with one book every two. I'm not sure if we will try and self publish, or team up with the publisher who currently does Greer's "Green Wizardry" book. I'll have to talk with John and see how we proceed. Its not unthinkable we will create our own Green Wizard publishing house, and offer other books related to this.

No matter how the 2022 and 2024 elections here go, I suspect that increasing climate change effects should see private grants and charity contributions for sustainable living increase. With our increased visibility in the prep and green living niche, I'm going to see what I can find for this project.

Either way, I intend to try and get Green Wizard into the forefront of the public discussion on the coming Collapse and the slowdown of modern society.

Eventually the plan is to open a local St Louis teaching center, along the lines of my recent urban collective post here:
Hopefully I'm still here to see that open in 2035. At which point I hand everything off to who ever succeeds me running this, and enjoy a few years puttering in my garden.

That is a very quick over view of what I have in mind.

kma's picture


Can we set up a Patreon or subscribestar for you for people who want to chip in? I don't know all the details, but I believe this could be done prior to incorporation.

David Trammel's picture

Its one of the options I'm considering. The problem I have is I'm firmly committed to not making Green wizards a two tier website. One with benefits for paid users that aren't available to the non-paid members. Greer wanted the information to help people deal with the problems and predicaments they will face in the Long Descent without having to pay for it. Something I agree with.

That said, as long as we're clear about that, I don't see a problem with asking for a small donation to the tip jar.

It can't be the only source of funding though. I regularly listen to National Public Radio (NPR) and like I'm guessing everyone, its a pain when they have their fundraising week. I know they have to, but the break to "let's talk about this fabulous coffee mug you'll get at the $xx level of membership" is a huge distraction. I don't want to have to do the same every year, when donations drop off.

I'd much prefer to figure out how to set up some revenue, like say physical books in the proposed series of Workbooks, that people can buy, while the free info is in the forums or downloadable pdfs.

This isn't a big issue right now. I've got a window of at least a few years to get it all set up. My worry is the unforeseen accident. At the moment I'm between medical insurance. Too young for Medicare, and too old to work a full time job that I'd get the insurance at.

So long as this is still the site where things are happening, that's great. I dropped Facebook years ago.

David Trammel's picture

The action will be focused here always. the other stuff like FB and Instagram will be just feeders to get people to this site.

Hi Dave
Thanks for the clarification. I am quite happy with gathering up people from Facebook who would benefit and, as you say, if we are not careful it'll all be older people like me looking for someone to pass my knowledge/skills on to and finding no-one.
Once again, thanks for all you do.