Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Urban Projects — by Juan Pablo Martinez July 26, 2012
Now I will share with you my Beautiful Gardens with Little Work method, so you can enjoy a nice garden — and one that does not require your throwing a lot of chemicals, fertilizers and a ton of money at it in order for it to thrive.
Beautiful gardens are often created by designers and use exotic plants that need special soil and a lot of chemicals and fertilizers to look good. Without these inputs, if you are lucky enough for your exotic plants to survive at all, it will likely be little more than a green (or brownish) shrub, with few or no flowers.
Frequently, beautiful flowers only bloom because of chemicals. If you don’t add these to the soil (or leaves), plants will refuse to give you any bloom, and you will see only green, or the feared brown of an unhappy plant. Therefore, you will have to spend a lot, poison your soil and be aware at all times about the needs of your plants.
So, how can we get beautiful gardens without spending a lot of money, time and effort? Read on.Comments (5)
Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Nurseries & Propogation, Seeds — by Joel Dunn July 7, 2012
Onion going to seed
When I started to take an interest in permaculture, one of the first things I wanted to learn but had no reference to guide me on was seed saving. The idea of seed saving felt close to the core of a regenerative way of life: life loves to live, and regenerates itself, and this can be harnessed to provide for our needs. I felt that, like sunlight and rain, seed should come for free, letting the garden function with a natural life cycle.
To begin with, I bumbled through, with some successes but plenty of unexplained failures as I tried to propagate veggies from saved seeds. Then came a wonderful opportunity to volunteer at Michel and Jude Fanton’s Seedsavers garden and seed bank in Byron Bay, Australia. Six months of working a couple of days a week with these inspiring people in that inspiring environment was a turning point in my understanding of a lot of things about life in general… but also of the fact that seed saving is not difficult at all, and very rewarding. With a few basic understandings, you can make a good start with seed saving, and I reckon a lot of these basics can be distilled into quite a short read that I want to share with you in this article. I intend it to be the sort of easily digested starting point that I wish I had when I started out.Comments (6)
Bird Life, Food Plants - Perennial — by Mari Korhonen July 3, 2012
An easy trick for saving your strawberries from birds!
Here’s a little tip I learned last summer from a friend for saving your strawberries from getting munched by birds:
Early in the season, before the strawberries start turning red, pick some little strawberry-sized stones and paint them red. When you scatter these fake strawberries along your berry patch, the curious and hungry birds come to check them out with a feast on their mind. But once encountering these fairly boring imposter berries they soon lose their interest and leave the patch alone — even after the real ones start to ripen….
It’s also fun to do with kids, parents, grandparents, friends… anyone!Comments (7)
Community Projects, Compost, Consumerism, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Medicinal Plants, Nurseries & Propogation, Plant Systems, Processing & Food Preservation, Recipes, Rehabilitation, Seeds, Soil Biology, Trees, Urban Projects, peak oil — by Anthea Hudson
I doubt many would disagree that food is one of the most important things that we are going to need to become reconnected to, in times to come. Without a reliable food source, much hardship can be predicted and even potentially losses of life. In the future, food security will probably rely much more on sources of our own creation, by producing food ourselves and establishing networks with others in our community.
We will also need to acquire the knowledge to put these food systems into practice. It’s one thing to have wheat seeds to plant, but wheat doesn’t grow and become bread by itself. We have to know, and become proficient in, the processes involved in whatever we plan to produce — preferably before there is an urgent necessity to do so!
The activities below will introduce your children (and you!) to some of the principles and practices of creating food resilience.Comments (8)
Animal Forage, Commercial Farm Projects, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Land, Livestock, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Joel Dunn June 30, 2012
Harvesting oats as green native perennial pasture
grows up between the cereal rows (Seis, 2006)
Pasture cropping is a farmer-initiated land management system that seamlessly integrates cropping with pasture production, and allows grain growing to function as part of a truly perennial agriculture. Annual winter growing (C3) cereal crops are direct drilled into living summer growing (C4) perennial pasture grasses as the pasture sward enters the dormant phase of its growth cycle, allowing year-round growth and eliminating fallow and bare ground. This cereal production for grain and fodder is integrated with an intensive time controlled grazing system. There are important sustainability benefits of maintaining more perennial plants across agricultural landscapes, and the low input costs and flexible nature of the system make it attractive to producers.
Pasture cropping has already captured the imagination of the permaculture community because of its potential to make grain cropping compatible with permanent, regenerative agriculture. This review provides an in depth discussion of the development of pasture cropping systems in the NSW Central West, techniques and strategies of the system, environmental and economic factors, the dissemination of the technology around the Australian cereal-livestock zone, and potential future development and adoption.Comments (9)
Compost, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Rehabilitation — by Mark Feineigle June 24, 2012
Over the last two years, here in South West Pennsylvania, a snow and wind storm knocked down a few trees in the back yard. This provided both resources and opened up a nice hole in the canopy where I could put those resources to use. The first thing I wanted to do was collect all of the yard refuse, both to see what I had to work with and to view the uncluttered land.
Aid Projects, Commercial Farm Projects, Community Projects, Deforestation, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems, Soil Conservation, Trees — by Mongabay June 9, 2012
Originally published on Mongabay.com
An Eco-Ola permaculture plot with yuca, beans, sacha inchi, bananas, charapitas,
herba luisa, and moringa in the Peruvian Amazon.
Communities living in and around tropical forests remain highly dependent on forest products, including nuts, resins, fruit and vegetables, oils, and medicinal plants. But relatively few of these products have been successfully commercialized in ways that generates sustained local benefits. When commercialization does happen, outsiders or a few well-placed insiders usually see the biggest windfall. Large-scale exploitation can also lead to resource depletion or conversion of forests for monoculture-based production. The ecosystem and local people lose.Comments (0)
Conservation, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Land, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss — by Angelo Eliades June 6, 2012
Currently, approximately 80% of the food crops grown in the world are annual plants, and it’s been this way for quite some time. Perennial plant food crops are pretty much in the minority in terms of how the human race derives its nutrition.
Permaculture strongly emphasises the importance of using perennial plants in our food production systems. When we consider the permanent agriculture aspect of permaculture, it should be apparent that we would need to utilise perennial plants to construct a permanent system, rather than using annual crops to create temporary systems, which are there one season, and return to bare earth the next.
The preference for perennial plants is stated explicitly in the seventh permaculture design principle — Small Scale Intensive Systems. It describes the use of perennial plants instead of annual plants as one of the features that differentiates permaculture small scale intensive systems from either conventional commercial or peasant farming systems.
To many people, the reason we use perennial plants is simply because they don’t need to be replanted each year, and don’t die down each year, saving us a lot of effort digging, sowing seeds, and cleaning up at the end of the season — and then they simply leave their understanding at that.Comments (69)
Animal Housing, Biodiversity, Biological Cleaning, Bird Life, Building, Commercial Farm Projects, Compost, Conservation, Consumerism, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education, Education Centres, Energy Systems, Fencing, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Livestock, Nurseries & Propogation, Plant Systems, Potable Water, Rehabilitation, Society, Soil Conservation, Structure, Trees, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor June 1, 2012
Paradise Dam, April 2012, from the now-climaxing food forest
Photos © Craig Mackintosh (unless otherwise indicated)
Zaytuna Farm Video Tour, duration 41 minutes
Note: Switch YouTube player to HD if your internet connection allows
Having spent the last few years seeking to establish and assist projects worldwide, and hearing some readers requesting more info on our own permaculture base site, I thought it high time I take a moment away from promoting other projects to shine a little light on our own work!
It had been a long time since I last visited Zaytuna Farm. Arriving in April 2012, more than two and a half years after my September 2009 visit, I was somewhat taken aback…. Back in 2009 the farm could somewhat be described as an unruly child — full of energy and enthusiasm, and flush with life, but not at all mature. Now, as I see Geoff Lawton’s vision for the property being played out more fully, we could compare the farm to more of a blossoming and beautiful teenager, still fresh in youth, but demonstrating a clearer sense of direction.
Geoff’s long term strategies are becoming evident, and it really is a sight, and site, to behold!Comments (22)
Food Forests, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Society — by Angelo Eliades May 26, 2012
In Nature, all things are interconnected to each other, and in permaculture we strive to understand the relationships that comprise the ecological web of life. Through understanding the relationships in an ecological system, we can model these to build similarly sustainable systems.
Of all the ecological relationships we might encounter, possibly the most important (to us) is the relationship of humanity to the rest of Nature. One of the greatest realisations that come from studying permaculture is that we are not above Nature, we are part of it, an integral part of the system so to speak, and when we assume out rightful and proper place, our relationship to Nature changes profoundly.
The aim of this article is to examine humanity’s relationship to Nature, how it has changed over time, how we can reclaim our unique ecological niche, and the benefits gained from reclaiming our rightful place in the ecological scheme of things.Comments (14)
Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants — by Elspeth Brock May 24, 2012
Climbing bean flowers have only one axis of symmetry
A practical thing botany teaches is too look at similarities and differences or patterns in plants. When growing vegetables you start to see resemblances between the plants and it can be useful to develop some general knowledge about how plant families are classified. I have found this knowledge particularly useful for:Comments (7)
Education, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Medicinal Plants — by Anthea Hudson May 23, 2012
Inspiring our children to develop an enthusiasm for gardening is a wonderful gift we, as parents or caregivers, can give them. This theme revolves around using the garden and its produce as an outlet for creativity. The following ideas will hopefully help give you some starting points for helping your children make the most of the garden in a myriad of ways. Use just one idea, combine several, or come up with your own ideas.
Children are often fascinated by mazes. They can create their own living mazes, either on a miniature scale with low growing plants, or a full-scale hedge maze, if you have the room and can afford the plants. Get your kids to create a simple maze design on paper first (graph paper might be handy) and then lay it out on the ground using tent pegs or stakes and string. Alternatively, they could lay little stones or sticks out to mark the design.Comments (5)
Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Health & Disease, Land — by Campbell Wilson May 11, 2012
Images copyright Cam Wilson 2012
Who would have thought we could follow McDonalds’ business model to get our kids to eat healthy food?Comments (3)
Education, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Plant Systems — by Anthea Hudson
Hands-on experience in getting the most out of a garden is going to be an invaluable skill in the challenging times ahead and getting kids enthusiastically involved, in their early years, is important for their future resilience. Giving your garden (or part of it) a theme can help inspire children and this particular garden theme — a Resilience Garden — may particularly appeal to boys, which is not to say girls won’t enjoy it also, of course!
A Resilience Garden helps provide some of the things you may need, that can be grown rather than obtained from an outside source, if necessary, thereby making your family more self-sufficient. The following are some ideas you might like to have your children try in your Resilience Garden. Some of them only take a short time to grow to a useable state, other things are more long term projects… but you’ve got to start somewhere!Comments (5)
Animal Forage, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Trees — by Chris McLeod May 4, 2012
Local legend around here has it that at some point in the past a guy by the colourful name of the “bush bandit” removed most of the topsoil from the land hereabouts and sold it off to householders in Melbourne for their gardens and lawns. Whether this story is true or not, I can only state for the record that when I purchased the block it had virtually no topsoil. The land had a hard baked clay pan with the strength of structural concrete where water would run off during heavy storms and any organic matter that did collect on top of that clay wouldn’t break down for years.Comments (34)