Animal Forage, Commercial Farm Projects, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Land, Livestock, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Joel Dunn June 30, 2012
Harvesting oats as green native perennial pasture
grows up between the cereal rows (Seis, 2006)
Pasture cropping is a farmer-initiated land management system that seamlessly integrates cropping with pasture production, and allows grain growing to function as part of a truly perennial agriculture. Annual winter growing (C3) cereal crops are direct drilled into living summer growing (C4) perennial pasture grasses as the pasture sward enters the dormant phase of its growth cycle, allowing year-round growth and eliminating fallow and bare ground. This cereal production for grain and fodder is integrated with an intensive time controlled grazing system. There are important sustainability benefits of maintaining more perennial plants across agricultural landscapes, and the low input costs and flexible nature of the system make it attractive to producers.
Pasture cropping has already captured the imagination of the permaculture community because of its potential to make grain cropping compatible with permanent, regenerative agriculture. This review provides an in depth discussion of the development of pasture cropping systems in the NSW Central West, techniques and strategies of the system, environmental and economic factors, the dissemination of the technology around the Australian cereal-livestock zone, and potential future development and adoption.Comments (9)
Compost, Courses/Workshops, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Paul Taylor June 21, 2012
Paul Taylor, the main teacher of our ‘How to Make Your Own Natural Fertilizer’ biological soil science course, is the managing director of Trust Nature Pty Ltd. Paul has been working as a recognized educator and sustainable design consultant for the past 30 years. Paul has Australian Federal Government FarmReady approval as an educator, is a recognized Permaculture Teacher and organic soil management specialist and has completed his Certificate IV in Education, Training and Assessment, qualifying him as an educator under the Australian Federal Government VET (Vocational Education and Training) guidelines. Paul has worked extensively as a consultant and educator in Australia, India, the Middle East and the U.S.A.Comments (0)
Conservation, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Land, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss — by Angelo Eliades June 6, 2012
Currently, approximately 80% of the food crops grown in the world are annual plants, and it’s been this way for quite some time. Perennial plant food crops are pretty much in the minority in terms of how the human race derives its nutrition.
Permaculture strongly emphasises the importance of using perennial plants in our food production systems. When we consider the permanent agriculture aspect of permaculture, it should be apparent that we would need to utilise perennial plants to construct a permanent system, rather than using annual crops to create temporary systems, which are there one season, and return to bare earth the next.
The preference for perennial plants is stated explicitly in the seventh permaculture design principle — Small Scale Intensive Systems. It describes the use of perennial plants instead of annual plants as one of the features that differentiates permaculture small scale intensive systems from either conventional commercial or peasant farming systems.
To many people, the reason we use perennial plants is simply because they don’t need to be replanted each year, and don’t die down each year, saving us a lot of effort digging, sowing seeds, and cleaning up at the end of the season — and then they simply leave their understanding at that.Comments (69)
Land, Livestock, Podcasts, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Conservation, Waste Systems & Recycling — by Evan Young March 5, 2012
Zaytuna Farm – Photo © Craig Mackintosh
In the middle of Winter 2011, Trades Hall in Melbourne hosted a debate between the environmental impacts of an omnivorous diet vs. a vegetarian diet. Evan Young, Permaculture Consultant and former Intern and Staff Member of PRI Australia argued in favour of an omnivorous diet, citing many examples both from nature and modern farming techniques that use the natural pattern. These techniques enhance the environment while providing nutritionally dense foods. The debate was recorded by local 3CR Community Radio show "Food Fight" and they later aired some extracts on their programme — the audio of which is below.
Click play to hear the talk!3CR 'Food Fight' Show Excerpts Evan Young on Omnivorous Diet Comments (0)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Compost, Consumerism, Courses/Workshops, Economics, Food Shortages, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Society, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Village Development, Water Contaminaton & Loss — by Beatrice Yannacopoulou January 13, 2012
A group of community-minded gardeners have turned a former Athens airport into a blooming vegetable plot, showing how Greece’s eroded soil holds the keys to a revival in farming and a way to buck the jobless trend.
by Beatrice Yannacopoulou. Article originally published on The Ecologist
All photographs courtesy: Dimitris.V.Geronikos
"If we want to survive on this land we must first help to heal the earth," said Nicolas Netién, agro-ecologist, teacher and co-creator of the NGO Permaculture Research Institute Hellas. He was talking to a group of some fifty people of all ages who had gathered for two days of workshops on self-sufficiency, how to self-organize, agro-ecology and composting. This small gathering was taking place on a beautifully sunny autumn day at the former Athens airport, Ellinikon.Comments (3)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Compost, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Food Forests, Fungi, Irrigation, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Conservation, Swales, Urban Projects, Village Development, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor December 2, 2011
Many thanks to Jeremy, Christina, Erik, Lamia and Kristen for all the work that went into creating the French translation subtitle file for both Parts I & II of the Greening the Desert video below. As a result, I’ve been able to upload a version suitable for your French-speaking friends and family, should you have some.
After clicking play, click on the ‘CC’ button at bottom
of the video to enable the French subtitles
And, a big thanks must also go to Frank Gapinski for the Greening the Desert Part I video that has turned so many on to permaculture concepts. It’s amazing the impact a few minutes of video can have on the world!
P.S. Because of the hard-coded English subtitles in the original version of the video embedded above, English speakers would be better to watch it instead.Comments (1)
Food Shortages, Global Warming/Climate Change, Regional Water Cycle, Salination, Society, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor November 15, 2011
This excellent little video, put together by Anselm Ibing, introduces a new series on sustainable land use in Jordan. It kicks off with a concise look at historical aspects relating to Jordan’s present ecological situation. I’m now left looking forward to Part II….
- Letters from Jordan: ‘Greening the Desert – the Sequel’ Site Contrasts Against Jordan Insanities
- Jordan Valley Permaculture Project Update: Post IPC Happenings
Aid Projects, Building, Community Projects, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Plant Systems, Regional Water Cycle, Rehabilitation, Salination, Storm Water, Swales, Terraces, Waste Systems & Recycling, Waste Water, Water Harvesting — by Dan Lewin November 11, 2011
An aerial view of the site
Although the landscape here could be seen as a model for scarcity, what there is an abundance of is rocks. The baked dusty earth barely passes for soil and during the summer there isn’t rain here for over six months. With valuable agricultural resources seemingly at a minimum, rocks can be incredibly valuable in the design of a sustainable human settlement. In the case of the Permaculture Research Institute of Jordan’s site (PRIJ), rocks have formed the main building blocks of the swales that form the back bones of this small farm. They surround the heavily mulched planting pits for the many varieties of trees here and they also can be used for another useful function which litres of my sweat has been testament to! They make up the substrate of the grey water system into which reeds are planted that feed on the water flowing through from the sinks and showers in the washing block.Comments (3)
Observations and Interactions at the Jordan Valley Permaculture Project (aka ‘Greening the Desert – the Sequel’)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Compost, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Developments, Earth Banks, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Plant Systems, Project Positions, Rehabilitation, Salination, Structure, Swales, Terraces, Urban Projects, Water Harvesting — by Christian Douglas March 30, 2011
Is it any wonder with daily reminders of the widening disparity between exponential population growth and water and food scarcity, so many of us begin to question the possibility of long term sustainable human habitation on the planet? Being a constant witness to damage caused by modern agricultural practices — motivated and driven largely by corporate greed — is proof enough that our ineffective systems have to change and come back into balance. My recent post in Jordan opened my eyes to this reality more than ever before.Comments (19)
Compost, Courses/Workshops, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Bonnie Freibergs February 25, 2011
Join us at The Permaculture Research Institute, Zaytuna Farm in Northern NSW, for Paul Taylors’ Compost Soil Biology Natural Fertilizer Course starting on the 7th of March.
Learn how to repair the soil through both a deeper understanding of the fascinating science of soil biology and plant nutrition combined with techniques like composting and compost teas.
Use less water and replace your fertilizers! You will discover methods and DIY products that will convert your soil and increase your productivity.
Where: The Permaculture Research Institute, Zaytuna Farm, The Channon, NSW.
When: March 7th – 11th
Click here for more details and to book, or call +61 (0) 419 741 358 now!Comments (4)
Compost, DVDs/Books, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Ecofilms September 6, 2010
Geoff Lawton and Frank Gapinski
I just came back from filming all the links to Geoff Lawton’s Permaculture Soils DVD over the weekend. It’s a wrap – finally – with all principal photography completed and now it’s just a matter of finishing off the edit. Squeezing it all down to 90 minutes will be difficult as there’s heaps of good Permaculture information in this DVD. From Compost Teas, Kitchen Gardens to Ripping the Soil, working with cows, ducks, chickens and worms – and in the middle of it all, Geoff’s 18 day Compost formula – Geoff was in top form. Despite not drinking any water all day and being exhausted from nursing a cow the previous evening that was expecting to calf at any moment, Geoff was able to stay awake, stay focused and deliver on queue.Comments (8)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Developments, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Global Warming/Climate Change, Land, News, Nurseries & Propogation, People Systems, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Salination, Society, Soil Conservation, Trees, Urban Projects, Village Development, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor July 23, 2010
This video can be downloaded in high resolution from Vimeo (see ‘About this video’ section on lower right side’).
I hope you’ll enjoy this clip on the Jawaseri School Garden Project. More, I hope it encourages you to dare to be different, and dare to have your work noticed. The garden we profile in the video above, as you’ll discover after watching it, has just won a national competition held by the Jordanian Department of Education – for schools who incorporate environmental projects into their curriculum. This means that thousands of schools, in what is arguably the most water-stressed country on the planet, now have the possibility to learn from this humble example of permaculture in action – and get inspired to do similar.
Special thanks to Lesley Byrne for her enthusiastic support, and to Nadia Lawton for her vision and determination to help her own people – and in so doing setting such an excellent example for us all.
Biodiversity, Compost, Conservation, Fungi, Global Warming/Climate Change, Health & Disease, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Structure, Water Contaminaton & Loss — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor June 24, 2010
Measuring Soil Carbon Change
As we all (should) know well, land use changes over the last several centuries have significantly increased atmospheric CO2 levels. Soil mismanagement, which has increased in tandem with our burgeoning human population, has released mammoth amounts of carbon from the soil, where it is a positive, into the atmosphere, where it becomes, in its present excessive levels, a negative instead. Correct soil management, in contrast, can play a significant role in reversing that trend by pulling excess atmospheric CO2 out of the sky, through photosynthesis, and returning it to the soil in humus, the stable, final state of decomposition of organic matter – thus transforming excess CO2 from being a pollutant into a rich habitat for the micro- and macro-organisms that are the foundation of all life on this planet. Permaculture, through its favouring small scale, low-to-no till polycultures, and where the soil is always protected by a ’skin’ of plant or mulch cover, and maintained by appropriate naturally harvested moisture levels, is a powerful system for restoring the Gaia state of carbon balance.Comments (3)
Compost, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Structure — by Rob Avis June 17, 2010
by Rob Avis
What is the difference between soil and dirt?
Soil is alive. Dirt is dead. A single teaspoon of soil can contain billions of microscopic bacteria, fungi, protozoa and nematodes. A handful of the same soil will contain numerous earthworms, arthropods, and other visible crawling creatures. Healthy soil is a complex community of life and actually supports the most biodiverse ecosystem on the planet.
Modern soil science is demonstrating that these billions of living organisms are continuously at work, creating soil structure, producing nutrients and building defence systems against disease. In fact, it has been shown that the health of the soil community is key to the health of our plants, our food and our bodies.
Why is it then, that much of the food from the conventional agricultural system is grown in dirt? The plants grown in this lifeless soil are dependent on fertilizer and biocide inputs, chemicals which further destroy water quality, soil health and nutritional content.
How did we get here? How do we turn this around? This is the Story of Soil….Comments (18)
Compost, DVDs/Books, Fungi, Rehabilitation, Salination, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Structure — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor June 9, 2010
It’s a wonderful thing to behold when permaculture passion and top-notch multimedia skills intersect in world-changing ways. Frank and Jane Gapinski of Ecofilms have spent countless hours working up highly educational and highly watchable productions for the PRI for a few years now. It all began with the initial Greening the Desert clip that took the world by storm; then followed the Water Harvesting DVD, the Food Forest DVD, and very recently the Introduction to Permaculture Design DVD. The incredible uptake of these films is living, encouraging proof that there is a new generation emerging who understand what needs to be done, and want to know how to do it!
But wait, there’s more! We’re now awaiting the soon-to-be-released Permaculture Soils DVD! This DVD gets to the very heart of what’s needed for a permanent culture, examining that magical muck that is the foundation of all the aforementioned productions. This work shares insights from Geoff Lawton’s two and a half decade’s worth of worldwide experience in soil creation – an experience gained in some of the world’s most inhospitable environments – helping to make the impossibly complex come to life in wondrously understandable ways. I personally think that holistic studies in soil science should be compulsory, foundational elements for every school syllabus – and that if they had been we wouldn’t be in the mess we’re in today – and we hope this DVD will go some distance in making up for this major shortfall in mainstream education.
Check out the trailer, and then stay tuned for future updates on release.
The soil is the great connector of our lives, the source and destination of all. – Wendell Berry, The Unsettling of America, 1977