Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Community, General, Permaculture Projects, Why Permaculture?.

Permaculture emphasizes the use of native plants or those that are well adapted to your local area. It aims at a site that sustains itself and the gardener. Its ultimate purpose is to develop a site until it meets all the needs of its inhabitants, including food, shelter, fuel and other benefits.

Permaculture enthusiasts love plants for their beauty and fragrance, but they seek out plants that offer practical benefits along with aesthetic satisfaction.

Sunflower

Photo: Ingrid Pullen

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Posted by & filed under Community, Food & Food Support Systems, General, Plant Systems, Plants.

beauty-orchard-Haworth

Last week I joined one of the final (for now) in a series of trips between France and England in order to promote biodiversity, preservation of cultural heritage, and, some might say crucially, the joys of eating and growing high-quality food. The exchanges, which are a part of the project Orchards without Borders (Vergers Sans Frontiers) (1), were organised by a mix of British and French organisations with help from Interreg (2), an EU programme designed to stimulate cooperation between EU countries, in order to “promote the use of orchards as part of a sustainable food system” (1).

The visit in which I participated was arranged by Evelyne Ramon of the CPIE (Union Nationale des Centres Permanents D’Intiative pour L’Environment) (3) in Normandy, and Anne-Marie Bur of the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership (4) and Brighton Permaculture Trust (5).

During the trip I learned a lot about how sustainable food systems are already being nurtured, as well as some exciting ways in which we can develop our food systems more sustainably, whether in France, England, or further afield.

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Posted by & filed under Bio-regional Organisations, Community, Development & Property Trusts, General.

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Photo of an open source cover crop roller from Farm Hack

If you want to succeed in farming today, be prepared to spend your time not outside in the field, but behind a panel of computer screens. So says Quentin Hardy’s recent article in the New York Times (“Working the Land and the Data,” November 30, 2014).

Hardy claims that the future of our farms here in America lies in scaling up – that automation and data management technologies owned by the biggest agricultural corporations in the world (Monsanto, John Deere, DuPont Pioneer) make or break farmers today. He promotes a top-down, big-data argument that follows the logic of monopoly. Farmers must adopt the technology and methodology of the big players as the only pathway to success in a big-boy business with ever-tighter profit margins.

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Posted by & filed under Bio-regional Organisations, Community, General, Population, Society.

Joel Orchard and Anais Gschwind sowed the first seeds for the Future Feeders movement in the early stages of 2014. Since then with the collective ideas of a vibrant group, Future Feeders has established its first 1.5 acre urban market garden at the Mullumbimby Community Gardens and begun to develop a platform for a broader collective of young farmers and food activists.

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Posted by & filed under Animal Forage, Animals, Commercial Farm Projects, Design, Development & Property Trusts, Financial Management, Food & Food Support Systems, Livestock, People Systems, Trees, Working Animals.

How one man transformed his farm from Monoculture to Permaculture.

When Warren Brush bought a run down orchard near Ventura, California, he knew he was in for the ride of his life transforming it into a Permaculture farm. From an original monoculture persimmon, apple and avocado orchard, it’s a risky challenge to turn all this around and announce you are now also running a creamery and a heritage pig system and a farm stall and then there are the walnuts and the orchards and… well, you get the idea. There are a lot of things happening here and you are not to sure what you are looking at when you walk around Casitas Valley Farm.

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Posted by & filed under Community, Education, General, News, Social Gatherings, Society.

No-Rules-School

At a time when many children are over-policed and over-protected, even parents who are open to the idea of rewilding may wonder what would happen if young ones were allowed to truly run rampant.

Contrary to the descent into savagery envisioned in William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies, one primary school is proving that when children are given the space and permission to self organise the results are extremely encouraging.

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Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Events, Resources & News, General, Permaculture Projects.

Jordan-PDC-April-2015

Have you done a PDC? Have you done an Online PDC? Do you want a hands-on permaculture experience in one of the harshest environments on planet earth? Do you want proof that permaculture works and you want to be part of it? Do you want experience with leading on the ground permaculturists who are getting things done in JORDAN on a world renowned permaculture site? THEN WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

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Posted by & filed under Building, Design, General.

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The art of Tadelakt has for centuries been steeped in mystic and wonder. Few who leave the fantastic halls of the Marrakesh palaces or the beautifully reconstructed Riads will fail to notice the glimmering monolithic plaster that twinkles in the light as it seamlessly extends over these proud buildings. Tadelakt is a plaster finishing technique historically used in north Africa to protect earthen structures. It is specifically valued for its function of providing a water proof seal. Marrakesh, a wonderfully unique city that has remained virtually unchanged for centuries, provides insights and inspiration for this technique as it is re-discovered throughout the natural building community.

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Posted by & filed under Design, Earthworks & Earth Resources, General, Roads, Storm Water, Waste Systems & Recycling.

To see more videos like this visit GeoffLawton.com

Recently whilst driving through Alberta, Canada, we stopped off on the side of the road to take a look at the state forest. A brooding mass of pine trees and a carpet of soft moss and mycelium. We filmed a video segment in the forest and were returning to the car when Geoff Lawton froze and looked down at the edge of the road.

He turned to me and said, “What do you see here?” I looked around at the grass next to the road and thought – nothing much.

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