Mohamed Hijri: A Simple Solution to the Coming Phosphorus Crisis (video)

Posted by & filed under Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Plant Systems, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

Biologist Mohamed Hijri brings to light a farming crisis no one is talking about: We are running out of phosphorus, an essential element that’s a key component of DNA and the basis of cellular communication. All roads of this crisis lead back to how we farm — with chemical fertilizers chock-full of the element, which… Read more »

Hill Country Permaculture: The Way of the Fox (Central Texas)

Posted by & filed under Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Soil Composition, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Trees, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

Foxes are renowned for being clever and nimble — elusive when sought as prey and very hard to keep out of a chicken coop when on the prowl. Many years ago, sitting at dinner with some long time "Hill Country" (AKA central Texas USA) farmers, I learned something about foxes that’s stuck with me ever… Read more »

What Plants Talk About

Posted by & filed under Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Trees.

In 1973, Lyall Watson, a South African botanist, claimed that plants had emotions that could be recorded on a lie detector test. His research was fiercely dismissed by many in the scientific community. Recently, researchers at The University of Western Australia relaunched the debate by revealing that plants not only respond to sound, but that… Read more »

Pseudo-grains for Lesotho – Permaculture Design for Disaster

Posted by & filed under Desertification, Food Plants - Annual, Food Shortages, Global Warming/Climate Change, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

Quinoa This year’s very dry autumn, winter and spring in Lesotho is ringing alarm bells throughout the country. The capital city, Maseru, is down to a very limited supply of potable water. There is no significant rainfall forecast until the summer season, December / February. Last year’s grain crop was slightly better than the two… Read more »

Conventional Vs. Organic Vs. The Future of Food

Posted by & filed under Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Health & Disease, Soil Rehabilitation.

People are awakening to a vision where they can see themselves as less stressed, having more quality time to spend with family, and real food laced with nature’s nutrition. Our great grandparents and, for some, grandparents could have told you of a time when there was no such thing as a supermarket. As a point… Read more »

Food from Perennial(ising) Plants in Temperate Climate Australia, for August 2013

Posted by & filed under Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants.

Editor’s Note: I want to express my heartfelt thanks to Susan for taking the initiative for this excellent series, and, I’d also like to second Susan’s request for volunteers to continue it! There may also be individuals who would like to start a similar series for other climate zones. Either way, you’re encouraged to contact… Read more »

OrBio – a Cover Crop Strategy for Market Gardens

Posted by & filed under Commercial Farm Projects, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Plant Systems, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Water Conservation.

A bug’s eye view of the sky, from a stand of cover crop Photo © Craig Mackintosh A recent post by Australian permaculture aid worker, Miles Durand, writing from Lesotho, reminded me to share a method of growing vegetable crops alongside cover crops that I learned when I studied organic biological horticulture many years ago…. Read more »

Small Scale Nursery Applications: Reflections from Loping Coyote Farms Nursery (NV, USA)

Posted by & filed under Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Nurseries & Propogation, Plant Systems, Trees.

by Neil Bertrando , Eric Toensmeier Plant materials are a critical component of any homestead or agroecology site, and by using the permaculture design concept, we can figure out many yields to pattern into our management activities. I want to explore some opportunities presented by integrating a small scale nursery into the process of site… Read more »

Permaculture is Weaving Magic! (Maharashtra, India)

Posted by & filed under Demonstration Sites, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems.

by Jyoti Deshpande, Chaitraban It has been almost three years, and, as Toby Hemenway says, the magic is happening! The trees are yielding shiny tasty food, the variety of weeds on the land is slowly reducing, the soil is a darker colour now and there are tons and tons of predatory insects patrolling the site.