Category: Structure

Save our Soils

Save our Soils

All terrestrial life depends on soil, directly or indirectly. Although our understanding of topsoil has grown by leaps and bounds over the past decades, we are still losing this invaluable resource at a frightening pace. Less than thirty per cent of the world’s topsoil remains in fair or acceptable condition. The fragility of this vital layer can be illustrated through a simple comparison: if one imagines the earth as an […]

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PRI – Natural Fertilisers and Nursery

PRI – Natural Fertilisers and Nursery

Lori Morris takes you on a tour of Zaytuna Farm’s diverse fertiliser composting systems. Nursery Manager Laurie Duniam explains the number of different methods of composting that occur on the site and she also describes the process of implementing fertiliser into the nursery system at the PRI Zaytuna. This is an interesting look at some of the systems that we have running at the Permaculture Research Institute. Come and learn […]

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HOW SOIL AND CARBON ARE RELATED

IMG_8028Ingrid Pullen Photography

Carbon cycle is one of the fundamental requirement of life on earth. Soil organic carbon (SOC) can be described as the amount of carbon that is stored in the soil as one of the components of organic matter which comprises the animal and plant materials and different stages of decay. Organic carbon (OC) mainly enters the soil by the decomposition of the animal and plant residuals, dead and living microorganisms, […]

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Soil Degradation: Another Carbon Story

Soil degradation can be a depressing topic. It is generally accepted that the decline in soil quality across Australia following European settlement has been extensive, and extreme in some areas. Soil degradation involves a reduction in soil quality, and this can refer to a decline in physical, chemical or biological properties, or to the actual loss of soil through erosion and transport away from the land. And these are commonly […]

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Home Garden Soil Health Assessment

Download the complete Home Garden Soil Health Assessment document here Growing food in a home garden is sensational. The most obvious sensation is the taste. If you don’t know how much better home grown fruit and veggies can taste, then ask an old person what tomatoes used to taste like. But the sight of a productive garden can be inspiring as well. It takes a shift from the modern urban […]

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Contour Beds Peru

The ancient Inca also utilised contour patterning in their agriculture. This article will describe the process we took to create kitchen garden contour beds in the Sacred Valley Peru. Contour beds are annual and/or perennial vegetable garden beds that conform to the natural pattern of the landscape. Being on contour means that the paths and beds themselves are level and follow the lay of the land. Not only does this […]

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Soil Short Film

Nature Is Speaking – Edward Norton is The Soil | Conservation International (CI) A very clear and concise short video about Soil, made by Nature is Speaking. Please check out there website for more great short films

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Nursery Quality to Tree Planting Success – the “Airpot”

We can be proud of many landscape tree outcomes, but there are some alarming tree failures in our parks and streets that are costing us millions. Up to six parties are responsible for landscape tree outcomes: the designer, propagator, grower, planter, waterer and maintenance crew. Too often the grower alone is held to account for any problems.

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This Zero-Cost, Waste-Eliminating Practice Can Produce Abundant Crops from Healthy, Restored Soils for Generations to Come

Photography by Jasmine A Koster What is zero-cost, waste-eliminating and can restore soils to fertility to produce abundant crops for generations to come? Biochar. Gloria Flora gave a presentation on biochar at the Fourth Annual Inland Northwest Permaculture Convergence. She discussed biochar as a method for producing energy and amending soil from waste products that end up in the landfill. “This is the Permaculture idea of capturing everything…with the pig, […]

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Fred Kirschenmann: Soil – from Dirt to Lifeline (TED video)

Fred Kirschenmann has been involved in sustainable agriculture and food issues for most of his life. He currently serves as both a Distinguished Fellow at the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University, and as President of the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in Pocantico Hills, New York. He also still provides management oversight of his family’s 2,600 acre organic farm in south central North Dakota. […]

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Nitrogen: the Double-Edged Sword

Dutch clover cover crop between cabbage rows Nitrogen is a component of protein and DNA and as such, is essential to all living things. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, around 97% of the nitrogen supporting life on earth was fixed biologically. Over the last century, intensification of farming, coupled with a lack of understanding of soil microbial communities, has resulted in reduced biological activity and an increased application of industrially […]

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The Secret Of El Dorado – Terra Preta

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Os-ujelkgw In this documentary a legendary civilization thought to be too good to be true on the basis of the stories told by the Spanish explorer Francisco de Orellana, is found to be a real part of history. We can separate fact from fiction here, in that the golden riverbanks the Spaniard told of were not golden with precious metal strewn along them, but with something far more precious — […]

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