Drought-Proofing California…not in the news

Posted by & filed under Design, Earthworks & Earth Resources, Education, General, Land, Storm Water, Surveying, Swales, Water, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

Digging our well-surveyed swales. I woke up this morning, put on my gum-boots and went out for a walk around our family farm in the rain. This in itself might not seem to be anything special to many folks, yet this was a 2”/5cm rainfall after several intense years of drought here in Southern California…. Read more »

Bulldozer Digging Swales

Posted by & filed under Community, Demonstration Sites, Design, Development & Property Trusts, Earthworks & Earth Resources, General, Permaculture Projects, Swales, Water, Water Harvesting.

Bulldozer Digging Swales from Midwest Permaculture. The Design We had been invited by a family in Southern Missouri to assist with the design of a 320-acre farm. They want to transition the land into a Permaculture landscape capable of producing a wide range of perennial foods (nuts, vegetables, herbs, fruit, etc.) as well as livestock… Read more »

Finding Water in the Desert

Posted by & filed under Aquaculture, Biological Cleaning, Design, Energy Systems, General, Irrigation, Land, Water, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

See more movies like this here. We were recently filming in Nevada, USA, visiting interesting high dry and cold climate systems. We went out in search of a salt pan to film as a specific landscape feature. Whilst on our journey we came across a large sand dune. It was a mighty Erg, an Erg… Read more »

Swales (Continuous Contour Trenches) Bring Water and Life Back to Maharashtra, India

Posted by & filed under Community Projects, Land, Potable Water, Regional Water Cycle, Soil Conservation, Swales, Water Harvesting.

This (unfortunately low-res) video shares the clear, practical benefits of bringing sensible low-tech Permaculture water harvesting techniques such as swales to our landscapes. In Maharashtra, India, swales are restoring the hydrological cycle, bringing dried up wells and springs back to life, and stopping erosion of the precious soils that subsistence farmers depend on.

Experimenting with Overflowing Circles and Slow-Flow Swales (Panama)

Posted by & filed under Biological Cleaning, Irrigation, Land, Soil Conservation, Storm Water, Swales, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

The jungle garden I am not Bill Mollison or Geoff Lawton, they will both happily report; rather, I am but a humble novice when it comes to permaculture, experimenting my way through ideas, mimicking when I can, improvising when research falls short. And, it was somewhere in between mimicry and improvisation that I came up… Read more »

Permaculture for Pastoralists in the Jordan Valley – Part I

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Animal Forage, Breeds, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Livestock, Urban Projects, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

Awassi sheep ready to go to market (and random standards inspector) I’ve been to the Greening the Desert “Sequel” site three times now. Once was in 2011 when we were at the IPC in Jordan. Once was in 2012 when I went there to take an internship with Geoff and Nadia. This year I was… Read more »

The Fish Ponds of Molokai

Posted by & filed under Fish, Plant Systems, Water Harvesting.

Trailer only – watch full video here! Geoff Lawton visits the Hawaiian Island of Molokai where an 800 year old traditional fish farming system is being restored. Fish farming has been practiced for centuries in many cultures. The Hawaiians built a sustainable system that worked from the top of the mountain range and ran right… Read more »

Guerilla Gardening in Rural Panama

Posted by & filed under Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Food Forests, Food Plants - Perennial, Health & Disease, Land, Medicinal Plants, Soil Rehabilitation, Trees, Urban Projects, Village Development, Water Harvesting.

A gnome (the author) in the Communal Garden Make no mistake, the war is on. The commodity is food, the source needs to be sustainable, and the community needs to know about it. If you are already into permaculture, or just gaining an interest, then congratulations and welcome to the peace-loving yet active front lines…. Read more »

Tiger Hill Permaculture: Phase 1, Water Harvesting Earthworks

Posted by & filed under Commercial Farm Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

In February 2011 I took over the farm, ‘Tiger Hill’, in Tasmania, Australia. The planets aligned at that time in my life as I had a deep desire to find a property that I could develop to get all of my experience and ideas toward Permaculture on the ground and create my long term vision… Read more »

More Thinking Out Loud About Earth Repair Tools: The Agricultural Specification Unimog

Posted by & filed under Design, Earthworks & Earth Resources, Soil Rehabilitation, Water Harvesting.

Continuing with the theme of my last piece, another ideal potential equipment platform is the agricultural spec’d Unimog, manufactured by Mercedes-Benz. These are highly versatile and very reliable vehicles equipped with capabilities typically associated with tractors — namely 3-point linkages, PTOs (Power Take Offs), and hydraulics. Just as with the tractor, a broad array of… Read more »

Oh, The Beds I’ve Made: No-Till Gardening in Tropical Panama

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

One of the most exciting parts of taking the reins to a hectare of lakeside land in Panama was planning just exactly what kind of experimenting was going to be on order. We knew there would be a food forest. We knew there’d be a vegetable garden, fresh herbs, and lots of very dense clay… Read more »