Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Medicinal Plants, Social Gatherings, Urban Projects — by Cecilia Macaulay June 24, 2011
"If you want to change the world, start at your back doorstep" said Permaculture’s Bill Mollison.
John and his big sister Cecilia
Here is the story of how John and Laura turned a shady dirt-patch into a little jewel-box organic garden.Comments (32)
Biological Cleaning, Food Plants - Annual, Plant Systems, Seeds, Village Development — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor June 23, 2011
I figure this video will stimulate some potentially useful discussion. It features portions of an interesting WWII-era production, titled Hemp for Victory, made by the U.S. government to encourage U.S. farmers into the cultivation of hemp to fill the escalating demand for industrial fibre during the war. This was not too long after the U.S. had introduced, during the height of the Great Depression, the 1937 Marihuana tax, which had had the opposite effect. (It goes to show the power that government policies can wield in rapidly influencing social priorities.)
Some of you will know, and some of you will not, that hemp has been used since ancient times. Sails were made of it, ropes were made of it, clothes were made of it. People ate it (seed), wrote on it (paper), lit their homes with it (oil), and fed their animals with it (what was left!). Indeed, some say there’s very little you can’t make from it. As the video shows, Henry Ford even made cars and car parts out of it. Not only were they stronger and lighter than metal parts, but they were biodegradable too!Comments (10)
Conservation, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Urban Projects — by Rob Avis June 20, 2011
by Rob Avis
Wicking beds are a unique and increasingly popular way to grow vegetables. They are self-contained raised beds with built-in reservoirs that supply water from the bottom up – changing how, and how much, you water your beds. In this article, we’ll talk about how wicking beds work and why we love them. We’ll also show you some great examples and leave you with ideas and instructions for creating your own.Comments (12)
Animal Forage, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure, Trees — by Campbell Wilson June 15, 2011
Pasture cropped & time control grazed
Traditional Crop and set stock grazed
When you are trying to decide which method of soil improvement to take, sometimes it seems like there are as many different approaches as there are bacteria in a teaspoon of healthy soil.
This isn’t necessarily a huge problem when you’re talking about a suburban backyard scale. It’s easy in that situation to: do some aerating with a broad fork; balance the Calcium:Magnesium ratio and whatever trace minerals your soil test says are missing; build and add compost and worm castings; brew up some compost tea; add some seaweed extract, a handful of basalt rock dust, a bit of Charlie carp and the humified eyeballs of some rare mountain lion to top it off.
But what about the farmer who is planting 1000 Ha of Wheat and Rye so the armchair permaculturalists of this world can munch their organic sourdough toast while checking the next important forum posting written by someone else sitting at a computer at 10.30am. That farmer would quickly go broke if they did all the things a backyard gardener can do. So how to decide?Comments (22)
Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Nurseries & Propogation — by Milkwood Permaculture June 9, 2011
I never thought we would get excited about, let along plan to do, the whole market garden thing. But while I’m all for no-dig polycultures like our domestic-scale kitchen garden, I’m also a pragmatist.
These days, we need more vegetables than we currently produce, especially from Spring through till Autumn. Way, way more. So I figure we’d better get ourselves into gear and learn how to grow ‘em.Comments (9)
Biodiversity, Economics, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, GMOs, People Systems, Plant Systems, Seeds, Village Development — by Oyvind Holmstad May 28, 2011
In this interview for CSSC Encounters, Dr. Vandana Shiva gives the history of her engagement and explains the situation we are in now, facing a new fascism as corporations and governments merge. Still, she is always using an optimistic tone, in spite of corporate grabs of our common heritage, the natural world — a world caught in a system where the ecology and the economy are fierce enemies, when they should have been best friends. How to reunite them? Vandana gives the answer, through true community!
Biodiversity, Consumerism, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Land, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Society, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Urban Projects, Water Contaminaton & Loss — by Rob Avis May 13, 2011
by Rob Avis
If you’ve been following permaculture, then you’ve probably been hearing about Permablitz – the transformation of lawns into productive, abundant landscapes. (For those of you in our region, here in Canada, check out this site.)
You may be thinking: why food? Why not lawns?Comments (20)
Biodiversity, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation — by Adam Grubb May 7, 2011
Adam Grubb holds up some shepherd’s purse on an edible weeds walk
Photo: Phuong Le
The permaculture movement has long been criticised for its approach to environmental weeds. Debates also rage within the movement itself, and perspectives vary widely. Some like David Holmgren are quite outspoken in their defense of certain declared weeds for their landscape repairing properties. It was brave then of the Weeds Society of Victoria to invite Holmgren and others with equally provocative and interesting views to present at their 45th annual meeting and seminar series entitled Contentious Perspectives on Weeds, which took place last month. I was lucky enough to attend, so I’ll give you a blow by blow run down and offer a few thoughts on reconciling the most extreme views.Comments (14)
Commercial Farm Projects, Demonstration Sites, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Plant Systems — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor April 28, 2011
Near the end of this great and inspiring little video the reporter confessed that permaculture is having a hard time establishing itself in the minds of mainstream farmers. Whilst it may have been true when the video was originally produced, this situation seems to be changing rapidly. Farmers can either watch their lands continue to deteriorate, and throw increasing amounts of money at symptoms of underlying problems, or they can begin to see the bigger picture and the sense/cents in developing permaculture systems where inputs are gradually reduced even as soil fertility increases. As far as agriculture is concerned, there really isn’t another game worth playing. The word is getting out, and we all must play a part in helping accomplish this. Our own food security is on the line here.
For those who want a little more background on this property, check this one out also:Comments (5)
Compost, Demonstration Sites, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Soil Biology, Structure, Trees, Urban Projects, Water Harvesting — by Angelo Eliades April 13, 2011
Editor’s Note: Some of you may remember my Magic in Melbourne post, where I covered the back yard of a certain urban wizard named Angelo, and his sidekick Louie. Well, Angelo gives us a great update on his progress below. It’s a very inspiring read, as I’m sure you’ll discover.
In our modern, Western, science-centred world, proof is very highly valued. We are habitual sceptics, our minds are trained to hunger for irrefutable facts, and when these aren’t delivered, claims are met with denial, scepticism and disbelief….
When it comes to permaculture, one question that often arises from those outside of Permaculture circles is "…but does it really work?" Far too often, I’ve heard people doubting the viability of permaculture systems, I’ve even heard lukewarm responses from within our own ranks!
It’s not every day that you wake up and try to objectively prove a major system of thinking to yourself. But one morning in early 2008 I woke up like every other morning, but took that first step on a fateful journey that would change everything….Comments (24)
Bird Life, Building, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Livestock, Nurseries & Propogation, Plant Systems, Seeds, Trees — by Chuck Burr April 11, 2011
by Chuck Burr
Here is the Spring collection of permaculture tips and tricks from the Southern Oregon Permaculture Institute. Enjoy. The top photo is the winter Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course students getting a little help from the chickens to establish a block-rotation intense veggie garden in Zone 1 at Restoration Farm.Comments (1)
Aquaculture, Community Projects, Fish, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Plant Systems — by Oyvind Holmstad March 30, 2011
The two videos below are much about scaling up mangrove systems for sustainable sea water farming, done in a true permaculture spirit from which both people and nature benefit. Sadly this is in stark contrast to industrial aquaculture, where they throw cheap energy on unsustainable systems to maximize profit.
Today mangroves are disappearing fast. Thirty-five percent of mangrove ecosystems disappeared between 1980 and 2000, according to the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. Shrimp farms have been a primary cause of mangrove loss, as well as urbanization and agriculture. This is why the message from The Seawater Foundation is of such an importance, as they show how to change and provide hope for the future.
Greening Eritrea — Part 1
Observations and Interactions at the Jordan Valley Permaculture Project (aka ‘Greening the Desert – the Sequel’)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Compost, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Developments, Earth Banks, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Plant Systems, Project Positions, Rehabilitation, Salination, Structure, Swales, Terraces, Urban Projects, Water Harvesting — by Christian Douglas
Is it any wonder with daily reminders of the widening disparity between exponential population growth and water and food scarcity, so many of us begin to question the possibility of long term sustainable human habitation on the planet? Being a constant witness to damage caused by modern agricultural practices — motivated and driven largely by corporate greed — is proof enough that our ineffective systems have to change and come back into balance. My recent post in Jordan opened my eyes to this reality more than ever before.Comments (19)
Community Projects, Eco-Villages, Economics, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, People Systems, Plant Systems, Society, Urban Projects, Village Development — by Adrian Buckley March 22, 2011
This article’s about where, I think, the best place to invest our energy toward creating positive change lies in repairing community and the planet. We all have the power to be just as positive an influence on this planet as we are the negative element many environmentalists make us out to be. The thing is, the power of being positive is truly empowering; feeling negative is totally disempowering. Read on and learn about the case for making positive impact, and a strategy for doing so. This article starts off pretty stark, but I promise, you’ll reach the end of this post hopefully as charged as I am writing it!Comments (5)
Community Projects, Courses/Workshops, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Seeds, Swales — by Nichole Ross March 9, 2011
Original Atrwork by Anthony Dohanos of Pahoa, Hawaii
Food security and canoes go hand-in-hand in Hawaii. When the Hawaiian Islands were first settled around 750 A.D., and for many generations after that, Polynesian voyagers stocked their massive double-hauled canoes with specific crops necessary for colonization. While a wide variety of plants and trees were already growing when early settlers arrived, the food plants that we have come to know as “traditional” were not. Vine cuttings, root stock, crowns, sprouts, slips, shoots and seeds all had to be carefully prepared, packed and loaded into canoes for long journeys across the unforgiving Pacific Ocean if settlers were to be able to survive on the new land.Comments (3)