Posted by & filed under Irrigation, Land, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

When life hands you (practically) free use of a trackhoe and a skidsteer, you just start digging until they pry them from your cold, muddy hands.

by Laurie Branson

The Curtain Drain

Since the last update, the barn was built. It was delayed a few months due to unfortunate circumstances (our contractor suffered a small stroke but has fully recovered). With the delay we were unable to get our cover crops sown around the Zone 1 area before the temperatures dropped, so we covered everything with straw to help keep erosion down. We will be getting the cover crop seed sown in the next week or so.

Our property is sloped about 8% and with our heavy fall/winter/spring rains (54″ annually) we had to put a fairly large curtain drain in around the barn and future home building site. Friends of ours have all of the heavy equipment from a former excavation business (they built our gravel road) so we hired them to dig the curtain drain. Being the exceptionally kind and generous people that they are, they let us use the equipment while it was on site and all we had to do was cover their quarterly insurance payment. This was waaaay (hit the high note there) cheaper than renting a trackhoe and a skidsteer for even one day and we got to use them for three months! How many projects could we get done on the weekends between October and end of December?

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Posted by & filed under GMOs, Health & Disease.

New research shows that the low levels of glyphosate found in human urine can promote the growth of human breast cancer cells, confirming the carcinogenic potential of the herbicide known since the 1980s.

by Dr Mae Wan Ho

A fully referenced version of this article is posted on ISIS members website and otherwise available for download here.

GM and herbicide cancer warning suppressed in retracted study

Among the unsettling results of the Séralini study [1], which almost certainly lie behind its notorious retraction by the journal editor a year after it was published ([2] Retracting Seralini Study Violates Science & Ethics, SiS 61), are cancers in rats fed GM maize and/or exposed to Roundup. Although the word ‘cancer’ was never used by the authors, they recorded three ‘metastases’ (i.e., cancers) — two in females and one in a male — plus two kidney Wilm’s tumours in male rats, which had to be euthanized a year early because the cancerous tumours grew to more than 25 % of body size. This makes a total of at least 5 cancers in the treatment groups, in addition to the excess of grotesquely large tumours, premature deaths, pituitary, kidney, liver, and other pathologies compared with the controls. The cancer cases certainly should not be ignored, and to make sure this important paper is not erased from public record, it is now freely available and permanently registered on thesparc [3] a floating knowledge archive for the survival of people and planet. The findings are especially important in the light of new research and indeed, previous research on the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate (and GM food).

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Posted by & filed under Economics, Society.

Anonymous companies protect corrupt individuals — from notorious drug cartel leaders to nefarious arms dealers — behind a shroud of mystery that makes it almost impossible to find and hold them responsible. But anti-corruption activist Charmian Gooch hopes to change all that. At TED2014, she shares her brave TED Prize wish: to know who owns and controls companies, to change the law, and to launch a new era of openness in business.

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Posted by & filed under Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants.

Last monday morning I had a chance to go for an edible weed foray with my friends Adam and Annie from Eat That Weed. It was early autumn here in south eastern Australia and quite dry but we still managed to find some of their favourite edible weeds including dandelion, purslane and sow thistle.

They shared with us why weeds are important to pay attention to and how to broaden your diet by including some super charged edible weeds jammed full of nutrients to keep you healthy!

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Posted by & filed under People Systems, Society, Village Development.

There’s an irony behind the latest efforts to extend human life: It’s no picnic to be an old person in a youth-oriented society. Older people can become isolated, lacking meaningful work and low on funds. In this intriguing talk, Jared Diamond looks at how many different societies treat their elders — some better, some worse — and suggests we all take advantage of mature experience.

Posted by & filed under Community Projects, News, Presentations/Demonstrations, Social Gatherings.

Get ready for International Permaculture Day on Sunday 4th May, 2014 — join a global day of celebration and action!

This year’s theme is: Reclaiming Food Freedom!

Everywhere new laws are being passed, supposedly for our benefit, which limit our right to healthy, nutritious food; from raw milk bans, to hidden GMOs, to the criminalising of seed saving; the reality is that our once universal right is being robbed for corporate profit. And not only is our health and food sovereignty at stake as the food supply concentrates into fewer hands, but so is our food security, the environment and the livelihoods of countless farmers. We must reclaim our Food Freedom whilst we still can. Join our worldwide call on Sunday 4th May and let’s showcase permaculture in action!

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Posted by & filed under Energy Systems, Society.


Trailer only – watch the full video here!

Does history repeat itself?

Geoff Lawton looks at the rust belt collapse of an entire industry in Holyoke, Massachusetts, and the lost opportunity that could have been prevented if people thought differently and redesigned their way using some proven Permaculture techniques. The future might have been vastly different.

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Posted by & filed under Society.

The beginning of life for a new permaculturist….

Living in the concrete jungle of Mumbai, there is a terrible smog and a mild stench of ammonia in the air. I try to ignore the noise that comes from the various households. People are busy with their morning chores, children are getting ready to go to school and there is a constant sound of buckets being filled and the showers turned on and off in the bathroom blocks. I try again and close my ears to all these and concentrate on some beautiful things….

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