Over the last year, I’ve been thinking a lot about how to make money without any. I’ve spent hours researching and have found a few ideas that seem to infiltrate Google. The question for me has been . . . would any of these ideas work for me?
Well . . . no, I don’t want to buy an eBook telling me how to get rich quick. No, I don’t have any stainless steel pots or a hand blender to make homemade soap. And no, there is no farmer down the road from me who would allow me to collect his sheeps’ wool. Most of these ideas are not viable for me, but some of them have reminded me to open my eyes for opportunity.
At a site called Profits from Nature, the blogger talks about an eBay success story in which a lady developed a business selling the tumbleweeds she picked up near her home. I don’t know of any tumbleweeds anywhere within a few hundred miles of my house, but there are other natural resources around. There are likely some near you, too. Best of all, these natural resources are free for the taking, provided we do so responsibly.
Here are a few ideas that maybe you haven’t thought much about:
Digging roots: The reality show “Appalachian Outlaws” highlights digging ginseng for profit. Realistically, ginseng is scarce and digging it is not practical for people who don’t know how to find it or who don’t have access to land where it grows. There are plenty of other roots that can be dug for profit that are more abundant, such as may apple, beth root, black cohosh, cranes’ bill and the list goes on and on. You would still need access to the woods, though, either as a landowner or by permission.
Crafting with scavenged wood: I’m speaking of driftwood and downed wood that you find in the forest. A few searches on Etsy will reveal gorgeous rustic cheese platters and serving trays sliced right off a log, among other crafts made from wood just picked up off the ground.
Rocks and fossils: Etsy and eBay vendors sell common crinoid fossils, pebbles from lake shores, sea glass from the beach, geodes from the creeks in their back yards, and all sorts of other lapidary rough and natural jewelry supplies they find laying around.
There are plenty of people who enjoy turning nature into money. Perhaps you can be one of them.