Category: General

The Reflective Art of Garbage Collection and Deflection

The way we handle trash nowadays allows us to put it on the curb or in the dumpster and forget about it. We pile up however much rubbish we produce then someone comes to take it away. If we start taking responsibility, composting and reusing and recycling, that will help. The biggest help would be reducing the amount of waste we create, particularly plastics and chemicals, which don’t so readily […]

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The Link Between Minimalism & Permaculture

There is an inherent link between permaculture and minimalism, so it’s no wonder why people are finding ways to combine the two ways of living into one super-philosophy. Both minimalism and permaculture hinge on utilizing highly efficient systems to make room for the important things in life: interconnectedness, abundance, and sustainability. Let’s take a closer look at the link between the two ideas: People Care Permaculture puts great importance on […]

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Chores by Design

When the concept of sustainability moves past buying things labeled “green” into personal action, the cold hard truth is that our lifestyles need to change as much as the products we buy. Part of living sustainably is adjusting how we do things so that we are less consumptive and reliant on unsustainable systems. Performing everyday tasks — cleaning the floor, washing the dishes, drying clothes, opening a can, making coffee […]

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What do lizards, procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with your brain? Part 5

This is Part 5 in a series about using Permaculture principles to train your “lizard-brain.”[i] In Parts 1 and 2 we met the lizard in your brain, found out what drives it, and learned how it influences your behavior. In Parts 3 and 4 we explored some ways to re-cast the lizard brains role in your life from foe to friend, using Permaculture principles. In this, the 5thand final part, […]

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The Most Ethical Renewable Energy Systems

The main thing in renewable energy systems is the embodied energy: the energy over the lifetime of the product versus the energy of manufacturing it. Lithium batteries are used a lot because they are lightweight, but they don’t last. Lead-acid batteries, like car batteries, are also short-lived. An old technology, the nickel-iron battery, lasts a long time. Lithium batteries are great when there might be a space or weight issue, […]

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What do lizards, procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with your brain? Part 4

This is Part 4 in a Series about using Permaculture design principles to train your “lizard-brain” – a name I’ve used to refer to the oldest regions of your brain whose function is to keep you safe and comfortable. In Parts 1 and 2 of this Series we met the lizard in your brain, found out how it’s responsible for behaviors like procrastination and avoidance, and began to explore the […]

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Water Harvesting Earthworks “Design To Reality” . Part 2

How to determine a starting point for surveying: Dams For me the starting point to survey is often a dam for high water storage. Dams are a major investment and it’s a must to have specific characteristics to construct the dam particular to that site. What I look for is the shortest dam wall possible to hold the most amount of water while staying as high as possible. These major […]

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What do lizards, procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with your brain? Part 3

This is Part 3 in a Series about using permaculture design principles to train your “lizard-brain” – a name I’ve used to refer to the regions of your brain that are responsible for keeping you safe and comfortable.[i] In Parts 1 and 2 of this Series we met the lizard in your brain, found out how it’s responsible for behaviors like procrastination and avoidance, and began to explore the idea […]

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Water Harvesting Earthworks “Design To Reality” . Part 1

So, you have been contacted by a client and you’ve discussed the client’s brief. You’ve started to look at the contour map, aerial images, whatever data you can find on the site. And with the client brief in mind, always remembering WATER IS LIFE, you set to the task of patterning the landscape using functional forms. You start to look at what’s the most economical way to hold water in […]

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7 Productive Zone-7 Plants That I Think I’m Falling For

I love discovering new, useful plants to incorporate into garden design schemes. Of course, there are a great number of plants many of us have never heard of, let alone know how to utilize, but one of the great things about the permaculture mindset is that it constantly yields wonderful, unfamiliar flora to cultivate. There are many ways a plant or tree can be useful. Food is one that we […]

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What do lizards, procrastination, and Permaculture principles have to do with your brain? Part 2

This is Part 2 of a series about the “lizard brain” – made up of the oldest parts of the human brain, (Please see Part 1 of this Series for a note about my use of the term, “lizard brain.”) The lizard brain co-exists with our more recently evolved brain regions and can cause all kinds of havoc if we don’t understand how to make good use of it. To summarize […]

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12-Plus Methods for Keeping Challenging Weeds and Pests Out of the Garden

  With organic gardening, especially at the outset, comes a few new challenges for transitioning growers. Pesticides and other chemicals have, for several decades, become the go-to solution for all things in the garden, and now that many of us are clearing our heads from that fog, we are left to rediscover methods for dealing with everyday garden problems.  When herbicides have been the trick for combating weeds, how do […]

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