Permaculture – Bringing Together The Layers And The Zones

On the outer fringes of your landscape, there may be areas of wilderness. How are we to tend to these wild patches in a way that fosters increase in edibles in zones 4 and 5? And how do we maximize our food production in our first three zones? Using our permaculture principles, we can increase the bounty of wild plants already on the land and introduce native species to the […]

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Inimitably Asparagus

There are so many things that make Asparagus one distinctively unique vegetable. From the way it tastes to the way it grows, nothing is typical for this peculiar perennial. Once grouped together in the same Liliaceae (lily) family as onions and garlics, asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) is now separated out into the Asparagaceae family. While asparagus may have just been relatively recently reclassified, it’s nothing new in the world of vegetables […]

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How Weed Barriers can Improve the Quality of Your Garden

While permaculturists strive to live sustainably and limit their impact on the environment, it can be a challenge to manage garden pests without the use of harmful chemical sprays. Weeds dig their roots into your soil and steal nutrients, water, and sunlight from other plants – while expanding its own system to disperse offspring throughout your garden. Using a weed barrier can help you fend off these frustrating intruders without […]

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When Space is Abundant: Using Acreage to Generate Income For Your Homestead

Your homestead is capable of being so much more than a source of sustenance and self reliance. It can also be a source of income! Wide open spaces are perfect for flexing your income potential as a homesteader. These four ways to utilize acreage to your maximum benefit are a great way to get started. Renting Out Pasture Land- This is an easy passive source of income that requires minimal […]

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Water-Farming Part 2: Practical Ways to Harvest Your Sky-Fruits

In Part 1 of this article (1), I went over the importance of incorporating water and water flow into any design you make, as well as sharing some ideas about how, if we want to encourage using water in a way which is beneficial for ourselves and our environment, we need to also reconsider how we relate to this element  (for more ideas about this see 2). The easiest and […]

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Confessions of a Community Garden Coordinator

Since it is now April, and because spring is (finally!) officially upon us up here in Minnesota in the United States, we’re about to start the next growing season in the community garden that I help to plan and coordinate for. For me, the garden absolutely comes with some excitement of yet another opportunity to grow our own food, to build community, and to get outside and spend some time […]

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The Growing of Trees and Plants for Climate Change Mitigation

Plants and trees have been grown for human consumption for generations. Vegetables and fruits obtained from plants and trees are used to sustain lives on earth. As a result, trees and plants are important resources for our day-to-day survival. Apart from the fact that humans consume vegetables and fruits from plants and trees, they all have other health benefits. For example, plants such as Catnip and Blackberries have been used […]

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Pollution-Eating Robots Could Help Protect the Planet

Researchers at the University of Bristol may have engineered a new way to clean up our planet’s waterways – with a swimming machine called “Row-bot,” which digests pollution and turns it into electricity for fuel. “Sometimes, tankers flush their oil tanks into the sea, so oil is released into the sea that way,” said roboticist Jonathan Rossiter, host of a TED Talk that discussed the potential these robots may have. […]

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Using Weeds to Read the Soil: Some Basic Concepts to Get Started

Weeds are becoming a more and more appreciated component of gardening. We have been reintroduced to eating the weeds, with things like dandelion leaves becoming a niche crop. Also, we are encouraging plants that, up until recently, were viewed as weeds (dynamic accumulators like comfrey and pioneering legumes) to revitalize our soils. And, many gardeners are once again celebrating weeds as a means of reading the soil. Geoff Lawton says […]

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New Developments on my Homestead

Recently, I have been gone a while getting things ready for spring planting. I have a few new projects and some new goals for this summer. I’d like to share what I have been up to with you and share my successes and pitfalls. First, I cut a few big trees down to give me some more sun. Working with a small plot of land has forced me to do […]

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The Controversial Third Ethic of Permaculture

Permaculture’s core is rooted in the philosophy’s adherence to three equal ethics. The first two, Earth Care and People Care, have been widely accepted by the community for what they are – straight-forward and logical. The third ethic, however, has been the subject of some debate among permaculture practitioners for many years. In fact, the ongoing discussion around the various interpretations of this third ethic can offer some explanation as […]

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The Incredible Edible Eggplant

Solanum melongena is referred to by many different names depending on location. Some may refer to it as aubergine, brinjal, or, as I call it, the eggplant. This member of the nightshade family is related to potatoes, tomatoes, and tobacco, and comes in dozens of varieties, with colors ranging in hues of white, green, and purple. Eggplant History The eggplant has its origins rooted in south and eastern Asia, with […]

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