Charlotte Haworth

Language and Permaculture, Part 1: Why we need to focus on Terminology to take Permaculture to the next level.

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One of the most universally applicable attractions of permaculture is that it is a practical set of design tools, based on directly observable effects and which can be used to create physical solutions to problems in the world. Indeed, co-conceptualiser of permaculture Bill Mollison famously pointed out that one of the reasons permaculture is so useful is that it involves actually applying what you are saying to what you are […]

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Shou Sugi Ban: How to Preserve Wood Using Fire

Shou Sugi Ban Feat

Modern building practices often use designs and materials which cause destruction or detriment to the surrounding ecosystem and utilize resources which may be cheap to buy but are expensive to the Earth (see for example 1). Luckily for the Earth, a myriad of projects out there are following the “use and value renewable resources and services” principle with building materials and techniques. One common natural resource to use is wood, […]

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Walipini Greenhouses – Some DIY Tips

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A Walipini is an underground greenhouse with a transparent or translucent roof. The word ‘Walipini’ means ‘place of warmth’ in the Aymara language of an indigenous Bolivian tribe. These greenhouses work on the principle of using nature’s resources – i.e. the earth – to create a stable-temperature environment in which a cool climate area can significantly increase the variety of crops you can produce as the greenhouse, with little or […]

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The Birth of a Wooden House: Carpentry and Resilience in Latvia

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In this video Jacob Neeman shows us an account of the building of his house in Latvia. What do you need to build a wooden house? Jacob starts at the beginning, with the forest. From a permaculture perspective this is very interesting; he is clearly engaging with the local ecosystem and uses mainly natural and local resources, with “Lime, sand and concrete mixture [used] only in small amounts”. Every step […]

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The Power of Permaculture: An Enthusiastic Introduction

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In this video, UMASS student Ryan Harb tells the TEDx audience in Utica, New York State, about the permaculture project he initiated back in 2010 which resulted in the first public university permaculture garden in the United States. During the talk he gives a very succinct definition of permaculture and how it can practically apply to “all people, not just those of us who are privileged”. If you are new […]

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The US Election: Inspiration for Instigation

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Editor Note: The topic of these articles is the environmental aspect, as the President elect of the United States of America – Who was voted in accordingly to the laws of that country – has made a number of comments on the topics of climate change and the environment, these are relevant to the Permaculture movement as it impacts the overall framework of the work we do and the systems […]

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Mental Farming 2: Tuning Into Your Environment

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In my previous article, Mental Farming – Ideas for Improving Education Approaches (1) I examined a few ways in which children’s education and permaculture are linked. Some of these are surprising, such as the Immersion English camp organised by the Spanish government during which the children are exposed to an organic garden and learn about different tree types, seemingly almost as a kind of side effect from the main aim […]

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Unseasonable Heat: The Unusual Weather of Our Times and Ideas for How We Can Work With It

Fruit Tree in January, UK. Photo by Charlotte Haworth feat

As the light begins to come back into the days of the Northern Hemisphere and springtime comes closer, now is traditionally the time to be planting seeds, ready for the proliferation of life and colour which the new season will bring. However, this year the season seems to have come early – so early that in many countries, from Spain (1) to the USA (2), flowers which should normally arrive […]

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Food Forests – An Exploration (part 1)

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Forest gardening is one of the most exciting techniques of practical permaculture, aiming as it does to create a fully functioning, self-regulating and ecologically beneficial ecosystem which also provides a huge proportion of your food and other needs. Over time, as they become established, forest gardens require less maintenance but give more produce, until eventually the “designer becomes the recliner” as Bill Mollison has been famously quoted as saying. European […]

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Mental Farming: Ideas for Improving Educational Approaches

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Education as Permaculture If we are to continue creating a better world for ourselves, it is important to adapt and learn from others. This learning process never has to stop; even when one feels expert there is always more to investigate. Yet how we go about learning is also important, and looking at how we can best create a process and environment which fosters exploration and mutual benefit. Such systems […]

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Human Permaculture: Some ideas on how to ‘Seed’ Information for Fertile Results

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Seeds and Stories In my previous article, ‘Human Permaculture: Looking at Migration as Flow to Solve Problems’ (1), I explored how we can apply permaculture water-designs to help people who are ‘flowing’ from one place along particular pathways to reach the destinations suitable for them in a way which can benefit those arriving and those already there. Applying such principles will need a concerted effort of communication among all those […]

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Some Tips on Making Compost

feature.Using the pitchfork to shape and aerate. Photo by Ashwanden smaller

As every gardener knows, one of the key things you need if you are going to grow plants is good soil. When using permaculture this necessity can sometimes be challenged; for example, in very dry or extreme (very dry/very wet) climates such as Mediterranean, some people recommend using no soil at all but instead growing all of your plants in gravel or small pebbles. This technique, suggested by for example […]

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