Category: Plants

Installing an Urban Food Forest – Updated

Installing an Urban Food Forest feat

Last year, the city of Pottstown, Pa., saw new growth and opportunity in the world of permaculture, as several local and broader groups came together to transform a dead, empty lot into a food forest. Biochar Bob from The Biochar Company and Soil Reef Biochar took viewers around the space, introducing them to participants and the project. The empty lot, situated perfectly in an urban space, near a busy street, […]

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How and Why to Rotate Your Annual Crops

Veggies

Sure enough the bulk of us permies are working to establish perennial sources of food, cultivating food forests for high yields with low inputs. Nevertheless, annual food crops are often what our kitchen gardens are chiefly comprised of. It’s no big shock, really, as that has been what most of us have grown up eating, enjoy the flavor of, and thus want to grow. No doubt, we should be cultivating […]

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When Chlorosis is Caused by Nitrogen Deficiency

AlbinoPopcorn

Chlorosis is a condition in plants where the leaves have yellowish colouration due to insufficient amount of chlorophyll in their cells. Chlorosis can be caused by a number of reasons including; deficiency of nutrients (such as iron, nitrogen, manganese, zinc), disease infestation, damaged roots, high soil alkalinity and compacted roots (1). This article concentrates on chlorosis due to nitrogen deficiency in plants. Why does nitrogen deficiency cause yellowing? To understand […]

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The Rhizosphere

green wheat grass

The rhizosphere is the word used to describe the area of soil surrounding plant roots. It is the most biologically active layer of the soil; populated with micro organisms interacting and benefiting from chemicals released by plant roots (1,2,7). There are more micro organisms present in a teaspoon of soil than there are people on the earth; the rhizosphere can carry 1000-2000 times this amount making it highly populated with […]

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How Plant-based Permaculture Is Possible

Eggplant

I get laughed at a lot. It’s frequent enough that, when I tell people of my intention to build a permaculture system without using domesticated animals, I sort of give a preemptive grin. While I believe most permies mean well in advising me, most seem pretty dead-set on the idea that a vegan permaculture garden just can’t work. In a lot of ways, I won’t lie, the proposition scares me, […]

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Basil: What Every Permaculturalist Should Know

Thai Basil

In a design system in which we are looking for each element to perform multiple functions, there are few plants that can show off quite the way basil does. As a rule of thumb, things are expected to warrant their placement within our designs with at least two useful attributes, but basil performs well all over the show. It dazzles in the kitchen, the garden, the herb spiral, the food […]

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Successional Planting Spreadsheet Tool

seeds to sow

After reading an article in the latest Pip (Australian Permaculture magazine) a couple of weeks ago on pages 38-42, about how to plan planting of food so that there is an on-going harvest instead of periodic gluts and then scarcity, I got inspired. Evita and I are both poor at keeping a notebook/diary of what is planted, where, and when. And we’ve had the feast and famine cycle happen a […]

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Dig the Fig – The Essential Guide to All You Need to Know About Figs

Fig-Fruit

Man and fig have come a long way since then but have remained very much good friends, travelling and setting up home together all over the world where summers are warm and dry and winters are cool.

During this article, we’ll be focusing on the common fig – Ficus carica. We’ll look at fig types, hardy figs, fig cultivation, fig reproduction, fig propagation, good companions plants for figs, and growing figs commercially.

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The Problem with Growing Tomatoes Where I Live

Homegrown Cherry Tomatoes (Courtesy of  OakleyOriginals)

Somewhere in this country people are doing it well, and truth be known, I now work at a conscientious, mindful organic farm (organizing volunteers and a farmers’ market) with vast biodiversity, animals and plants, that manages to pull enough crop to keep me in organic tomatoes. However, despite what appears to the contrary, what seemed illogical to me not so long ago, in a climate that never gets too cold […]

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Learning More on How to Think about Soil

Seedling & Soil

I don’t know why it is, but I’ve taken to waking up at about five every morning. I kiss my wife Emma on the head, creep downstairs from the loft of our apartment and spend the next hour or more watching Geoff Lawton videos from the PDC course. She knows I’m doing it. It’s nothing weird. But, for the most part, we don’t talk all that much about it. This […]

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The Food Forest: A Shining Example Of Permaculture in Australia

The Food Forest: A Shining Example Of Permaculture in Australia

A direct pupil of Bill Mollison, the father of permaculture, Geoff Lawton takes his decades of experience on the road, with a visit to one of Australia’s most interesting and longstanding examples of permaculture. The Food Forest, owned by Graham and Annmarie Brookman and a joint venture with their two children, consists of more than 160 varieties of food products and timber over a 15 hectare space of land in […]

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From Yacon to Pumpkin

From Yacon to Pumpkin 05 - feat

The Yacon has been harvested and processed into Yacon Syrup. Now the bed needs to be re-established , but to grow what? Yacon is a root crop so ideally growing something that is not a root vegetable is preferred. Well, the choice is pumpkins because it is also time to start a new patch for them. With our climate pumpkins will just keep growing all year around only slowing down […]

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