The Natural Capital Plant Database

by Daniel Halsey The database is working very well and I encourage all permaculture designers to try it out. Especially the spreadsheet download. Let me know if you would like free access for a time to try it out. The Natural Capital™ Plant Database is a repository of plant information for ecological design. Our partner designers have combined the best sources of plant research and documentation in order to provide […]

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Permaculture Paradise at Val & Eli’s Garden (Jacksonville, Florida)

Val and Eli take us on a tour of their permagarden in Jacksonville FL. They have created a wonderful, natural space filled with self-sustaining fruits, vegetables, herbs, medicines, colors, water, fragrances, and wildlife… at their fingertips. And below, Val and Eli continue to harvest the organic riches of their food forest and now cut back their garden to nourish their fruit trees with natural, free fertilizers. No artificial fertilizers, herbicides, […]

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A Festival of Toxic Waste

How about building bonfires without the old sofas and painted boards? by George Monbiot “Bonfire Night Kills Whales” is the sort of headline that gives environmentalists a bad name. But the facts can’t be helped, even if the messengers must be shot for sounding like killjoys. Most communities have festivals of subversion, in which the rules by which they live for the rest of the year – placid, ordered and […]

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China and the Soybean Challenge

by Lester R. Brown, Earth Policy Institute Some 3,000 years ago, farmers in eastern China domesticated the soybean. In 1765, the first soybeans arrived in North America, but they did not soon catch on as a crop. For 150 years or so the soybean languished as a curiosity in gardens. 1 Then in the late 1920s, a market for soybean oil began to develop, moving the soybean from the garden […]

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Mariana Mazzucato: Government – Investor, Risk-taker, Innovator (video)

Why doesn’t the government just get out of the way and let the private sector — the "real revolutionaries" — innovate? It’s rhetoric you hear everywhere, and Mariana Mazzucato wants to dispel it. In an energetic talk, she shows how the state — which many see as a slow, hunkering behemoth — is really one of our most exciting risk-takers and market-shapers. — TED

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Wild Garlic (Allium Ursinium) – a Culinary Delight

You will find wild garlic in full bloom and looking its absolute best around March/April in the UK. It’s one of those herbs which is available when there is not much else. Whilst taking a long walk in the peak district I happily stumbled across masses of this beautiful herb and decided to post something regarding its medicinal and culinary uses. When to harvest? Ideally, the leaves should be picked […]

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A Global Ban on Left-Wing Politics

That’s what the new rules being smuggled into trade agreements are delivering. by George Monbiot Remember that referendum about whether we should create a single market with the United States? You know, the one that asked whether corporations should have the power to strike down our laws? No, I don’t either. Mind you, I spent ten minutes looking for my watch the other day, before I realised I was wearing […]

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2013 To Be Record Year for Offshore Wind

by J. Matthew Roney, Earth Policy Institute Offshore wind power installations are on track to hit a seventh consecutive annual record in 2013. Developers added 1,080 megawatts of generating capacity in the first half of the year, expanding the world total by 20 percent in just six months. Fifteen countries host some 6,500 megawatts of offshore wind capacity. Before the year is out, the world total should exceed 7,100 megawatts. […]

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Mohamed Hijri: A Simple Solution to the Coming Phosphorus Crisis (video)

Biologist Mohamed Hijri brings to light a farming crisis no one is talking about: We are running out of phosphorus, an essential element that’s a key component of DNA and the basis of cellular communication. All roads of this crisis lead back to how we farm — with chemical fertilizers chock-full of the element, which plants are not efficient at absorbing. One solution? Perhaps … a microscopic mushroom. — TED […]

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Hill Country Permaculture: The Way of the Fox (Central Texas)

Foxes are renowned for being clever and nimble — elusive when sought as prey and very hard to keep out of a chicken coop when on the prowl. Many years ago, sitting at dinner with some long time "Hill Country" (AKA central Texas USA) farmers, I learned something about foxes that’s stuck with me ever since. A fox’s tail weighs as much as the rest of its body and thus […]

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Food Forests For All – A One World Permaculture Workshop (Nov 2013, Austin, Texas)

What: Food Forest Workshop When: November 9th, 10th and 16th, 9am – 4pm Where: Whole Life Learning Center & Hill Country Natives, Austin, Texas Teachers: Caroline Riley and Mike Wolfert Cost: US$150 This is a 3-day intensive workshop on food forest design, implementation and management for the Central Texas bio region. This workshop will empower you to establish a thriving eco-system that provides a year round hyper-local food supply. Come […]

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Start Growing! Part 1: How to Buy a Farm Debt Free

Let’s say you have a bit of savings and you’re keen to buy land to farm. Even though permaculture has taught you how to see the hidden value in land and you have the skills to rehabilitate the most degraded landscapes, land is by no means cheap. The problem is not that you can’t borrow money to purchase that hidden gem you’ve found. The problem is that the real costs […]

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