Do People Really Care about the Environment?

“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and to one another.” – Chris Maser, Forest Primeval: The Natural History of an Ancient Forest The idea of caring for our planet may seem like self-evident common sense to the indigenous tribes of the world who live in close connection to the Earth. Likewise, for all other […]

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Voices Of Change Podcast: The AntiFragile Property Series – Part 1

I had a chance to chat once again with Diego Footer from Creative Destruction, formally known as Permaculture Voices, on his podcast series featuring “honest, hard conversations about farming, business, and life with those trying to make a living doing something that they love and dealing with life in the process.” This time, we spoke at length about ideas from the recent Land as Insurance blog series: “There’s a lot […]

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Red Radicchio

Radicchio (Cichorium intybus) is a perennial plant in the chicory genus that falls within the Asteraceae/Compositae (aster) family that includes the daisy and dandelion, amongst other composite flowers. This cultivated version of chicory, sometimes called red or Italian chicory, is a beautiful burgundy color leafed vegetable with white veins. Hailing from Italy, radicchio comes in several varieties that are usually named for the area of Italy they originated from. Benefits […]

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Goatscaping

Herd of goats on mountan meadow

While vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts last summer, our family decided to go on a wooded hike through Cedar Tree Neck Sanctuary that would lead us to a secluded beach. After hiking through a dense landscape for about half an hour, we were shocked to suddenly come upon high fences that appeared to be keeping something out…or perhaps in. We continued to hike and became aware of strange sounds coming […]

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How Being A Sustainable Farmer Reduces Carbon Footprint

How Being A Sustainable Farmer Reduces Carbon Footprint

The human population is increasing at an alarming rate – projected to reach around 9 billion by 2050. If we are to meet our feeding needs and at the same time preserve the environment for future generations, now is the right time to fully embrace sustainable farming – a system in which farmers use techniques that protect the environment, economy, people, and communities. The benefits that sustainable farming affords to […]

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Perovskite: The Future of the Solar Industry

macro shooting of natural rock - little cryslals of Perovskite mineral stone (calcium titanium oxide mineral composed of calcium titanate) isolated on white background

The ability to generate solar power from a diverse range of surfaces is a possibility in the near future, thanks to a material known as perovskite. According to many scientists, the power of liquid solar cells has the potential to revolutionize the $55 billion solar energy industry. “Solar cells are no longer limited to rigid structures such as panels,” said Dr. Anita Ho-Baillie, manager with the Australian Centre for Advanced […]

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Residencies available at the Wurruk’an Ecovillage and Permaculture Farm (Victoria)

Wurruk’an is a small and emerging ecovillage in Gippsland, Victoria. We’re located just outside of Moe, about 2 hours east from Melbourne on the train line towards Traralgon. The 20 acre property is an inclusive gathering space for people seeking to explore meaningful alternatives to consumer capitalism and demonstrate simpler ways of living. There are currently four of us living at Wurruk’an. We like to think of ourselves as friendly, […]

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3 Simple But Sustainable Ways to Build Tomato Cages

The fact of the matter is that tomatoes are, indeed, perennial plants when in their native tropics, but that is also beside the point because some foods, perennial or not, are just too damned tasty to fully wave goodbye to. There is a time and a place to play with tomatoes in the greenhouse, see how many years they might last. But, ultimately, when spring rolls around and temperatures start […]

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The Five Zones of Permaculture – Zones Two to Five

The Five Zones of Permaculture: The best way to break down a permaculture ecosystem is into zones. Zones are a great way of boiling down the elements of our design based upon the frequency of human use and plant or animal needs. Elements which are attended to frequently are located closer to the dwelling and those that need limited contact or thrive in isolation are located further away. The zones […]

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Gardening with Woodchips: What, Why, How and Who?

With permaculture, we can grow plants using imaginative techniques and materials, negating or diminishing the need for synthesised chemical additions to the soil and using nature and the ‘soil food web’ as our guide. Because we need to ‘Observe and Interact’ with what is going on in our system before adding things in, every site is unique and so what works for one person may be ineffective in a different […]

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Agriculture and Autism: A Perfect Match

Farmer planting young seedlings of lettuce salad in the vegetable garden

In conversations about sustainability, I often end up saying that the kind of projects I get most excited about are those that not only help the planet but help people at the same time. These could be businesses or organizations that combine local food with fighting hunger or rainforest conservation with empowering women, but one of my favorite combinations was one I got to work with firsthand. One summer during […]

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Tropical Lettuce

The first time I encountered tropical lettuce, or Indian lettuce (Lactuca indica), was when I was exploring a rooftop garden in Fujian province of rural southern China. It was the middle of the day in the middle of the summer, and here was this beautiful lettuce exposed to full sun in a raised bed with less than six inches deep of relatively poor soil. I was amazed that this plant […]

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