Category: Swales

Regaining Sustainable Agriculture Practices in the Amazon (Peru)

by William Park, Acaté Amazon Conservation View of fish pond on Matsés land with small farm on hillside The Matsés indigenous people are master farmers, and it seems strange to even suggest farming ideas to people who live almost entirely off the land. The problem is that their traditional small-scale swidden (slash-and-burn) approaches to farming, once superbly adapted for a semi-nomadic lifestyle, do not translate to newer, larger fixed settlements. […]

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Water Retention Landscape Techniques for Farm and Garden

As the effects of climate change pursue, the necessity to build resilient communities and farms becomes ever more apparent. Often farmers are stuck dealing with incessant rainfall, hurricanes, floods and droughts. Many innovative water conservation methods have emerged and are being practiced all over the globe — some have been practiced for centuries and others are much newer, however each require different types of resources. Most of these methods provide […]

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Advanced Cell Grazing – Permaculture Livestock Systems at Zaytuna Farm

Cell grazing is not a new option when it comes to large animal management. However, brewing at Zaytuna Farm is a dynamic and advanced cell moving method that combines age old and newly discovered techniques and strategies. It has been said before, and most of us permaculturists have used our power of observation to see, that nature will opt for balance. This becomes apparent when we see an overgrazed pasture […]

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Climate Change Adaptation Technologies – Permaculture Design Brings Results

//www.youtube.com/embed/RQkiv_U5AoU Climate Change Adaptation technology: Stone Lines (The Sahel)(More videos below) It’s uber exciting to see simple design solutions bringing yields, low-carbon prosperity and health, to people who would otherwise suffer needlessly. Watch the excellent videos below to see how permaculture land management techniques are spreading across Africa and beyond, and giving communities an insurance against the growing threat of climate change — a problem these small-holder farmers had no […]

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Geoff Lawton’s Zaytuna Farm Video Tour – Part II

Last year I took some time out to make a Zaytuna Farm Video Tour for you all (embedded here, with lots of photos and text). The positive comments, both on our site and on YouTube, along with additional questions (see comments below this post), encouraged us to make another! This new video, above, shot 11-12 months after the original video, is twice as long and covers several aspects of the […]

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Geoff Lawton’s Permaculture Masterclass – 5 Acre Abundance on a Budget!

Geoff Lawton’s Permaculture Masterclass – 5 Acre Abundance on a Budget!

Geoff Lawton, with Zaytuna Farm behind (upper left). I’ve been staggered by the reaction to my latest video I put up on the weekend; Permaculture Masterclass – 5 Acre Abundance on a Budget!. Over 500 comments, with most people telling me it’s my best video yet. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. We hit the design wall on a 5 acre cow paddock and redesigned it with 7 […]

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Before Permaculture: Keyline Planning and Cultivation

Freshly keyline plowed (Photo: Kirsten Bradley) Plan the work then work the plan. — P.A. Yeomans Intro In the mid 1950s, Australian engineer P.A. Yeomans demonstrated a new system of land management he called the Keyline system. The consensus of the time, championed by people like Dr H.H. Bennett, was that soil was a finite resource and that once depleted “it was irretrievably lost as if consumed by fire”. P.A. […]

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Ridge to Valley – a Holistic Watershed Perspective

This excellent little 20-minute video does a great job of covering the basics of watershed management and landscape rehydration. You won’t hear the words ‘permaculture’ or ‘swales’ once, but it’s clear that both are in use here, to great effect. If we can get these simple but profound concepts driven into social consciousness, and applied broadscale, we would see that investment in labour pay dividends, as many of our increasingly […]

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Talking Swales

While at Wadeye, Northern Territory, Australia, installing a permaculture design for Earth Ethics, this video was taken when I was explaining how to install swales and level sill spillways and what their function is, to some of the guys working on site. So if you want to understand how to install swales and spillways, this might help. Apologies for the unbuttoned shirt, I was not aware this was being filmed. […]

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My Experience of Permaculture Aid Work in Ethiopia

I’m not sure it’s possible, looking back now, to say exactly what I was expecting when I hopped on that plane and flew to Ethiopia for an internship at Strawberry Fields, but one thing I am sure of is that it’s been one of the most transformative, edifying experiences I’ve had in my life.

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Pigscavation to Help Water Penetration

Capturing water before it runs off your property is key to rehydrating parched landscapes. Building ‘swales’ or channels along contour with uncompacted mounds is one way of assisting water infiltration. Building swales can also be an expensive exercise utilising heavy machinery which is expensive to transport and hire. Nick Huggins, of Jacmarall Farm uses an innovative way of building smaller swales that is within the economic reach of most small […]

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How To Survive the Coming Crises (free Geoff Lawton video)

How To Survive the Coming Crises (free Geoff Lawton video)

At time of writing, our Zaytuna Farm Video Tour video has had almost 11,000 views, after only six months. A lot of people expressed their appreciation for this video, with some describing it as a "free DVD". Where we can, we want to provide more inspirational/instructional material for free, and today I’m writing to let you know about our latest effort towards fulfilling this goal. How to Survive the Coming […]

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