I shared some of my experiences around the world in my article A Nomadic Permaculture Journey continues……PDC Spain 2014 a few month ago with you all and would like to continue with a short update from my current work here in Spain & Portugal since then plus some info about my last few month of work in India, Thailand and finally Australia, the country of origin of permaculture.
We finished the Permaculture Design Course with Rico Zook in June at the Alta Garrotxa Nature Reserve with great success and it was a big pleasure to host and share with such a diverse and open-hearted group 2 weeks together in a magical spot up in the mountains of Alta Garrotxa Nature Reserve. Here is a slideshow I made from some pictures of the course:
Afterwards I went on to volunteer at Planeses – Regenerative Farm which is running a 90 costumers CSA and has a 1,7ha Vegetable production plus a Orchard in the beginning stages with 3 chicken tractors and a mobile egg laying house. We actually also bought our local organic food from this Regenerative Farm for our PDC course in June.
You can find more infos about this amazing farm here: https://planeses.cat/
To me it feels encouraging to see more and more regenerative farms sprouting up all around the world, lots of experiments are tried here with different types of Natural Farming techniques inspired by Jairo Restrepo Rivera and Dr.Han Kyu Cho.The main aim on the farm here is to utilize natural local materials and produce natural fertilizers, to give back to the soil and also have a viable profit making business in return.
Some of the staff here at Planeses Farm has been trained by Joel Salatin and Jairo Restrepo Rivera. They implemented a egg laying mobile chicken house inspired by Joel Salatins work in the their orchard to let the egg laying chickens graze in between the fruit trees, find there food in a nice pasture environment plus produce happy, healthy eggs. The house is moved every week to give the chickens fresh food all the time. The system is in the experimental stage but has been showen to be quiet effective so far ,but until now the chickens have to be feed some supplement food like self made sprouts from local ecological grain every day as they should continue laying lots of eggs for sell and consumption on the farm. The pasture is not yet established with the right plant species to make the system function to its maximum but will be improved in the next couple of months.
At the moment we are working with following crops:
Tomato,Zuchini,Onion,Garlic,Parsley,Sweet Pepper,Chard,Eggplant,Pumpkin,Cucumber,Basil, plus Chicken Meat and Eggs.
The farm is over 2ha big and we are using mainly Bokashi and other natural farming recipe’s of Fermented Plan Jucies,Egg Shells and Fish Amino Acid to work with the fertility of the soil and the health of the plants.
The owner also tried out to use BRF and Biochar,as there is lots of forest in other parts of the land very close by that could be utilized in a sustainable way, but so far he found that the Bokashi was most effective in his case.
After more then a month working on Planeses Regenerative Farm, i set off to the Pre Pyrenees to take part in Engaged Buddhist Training – Empowering Transformation. This experience really was inspiring as it gave me space and time to reflect on the past experiences and the big journey I had behind but also in front of me. We spend 2 weeks very quiet in the mountains, close to nature, simply living together and having space to reflect, doing meditation, yoga, nature connection & deep ecology plus some self empowerment work really energized me and gave me lots of new inspiration and motivation.
Straight after I went onwards to Tamera – Healing Biotope and famous ecovillage located in the Alentejo, Portugal.I got a scholarship and was able to participate in the 2week Water Retention Landscapes Training which was giving deeper insides and information’s about their Water Retention Landscape project that Bernd Mueller and Sepp Holzer developed on site in a very dry area now full of Trees, Vegetables, Wildlife and beautiful waterbodies. Also we had the chance to visit the construction of a big dam that was currently implemented at Moojis Spiritual Community near Tamera.This experience really showed me the power of landscape transformation trough design in harmony with nature. I am so grateful for these 2 weeks full of exiting and inspirational information in beautiful surroundings.
In that time we also decided to host another PDC in the beautiful Alta Garrotxa Area, this time with Doug Crouch from Tree Yo Permaculture and once again it was an amazing experience, full of beautiful people and lovely experiences, we shared and learned all together. This time it as the 10th PDC course I have been part of, either as participant, co-organizer or co-facilitator and it was a worthy anniversary being one of my favorite overall PDC experiences ever. See a slideshow of this amazing time we had together here:
In November I started my trip once again back to India to be involved in another PDC course in South India near Auroville with Rico Zook.This time a 3 week program, fully booked with 25 students gave us lots of time to share the tools and concepts of Permaculture plus have some hands-on work done on site. I appreciated being back in India, having the chance again to work in the Auroville area with all its great people and demonstration sites, it really was a rich experience!
Straight after I went onwards to Thailand, to Gaia Ashram, a newly started Project by Om & Tom in North Thailand working with the Ecovillage Network,Permaculture,Deep Ecology and Self-Empowerment, I had the chance to help out in the background during their 1 month Internship Program, helping in maintaining the gardens & nursery, cooking twice a week for the participants plus helping to make things flow smooth gave me an interesting experience in a newly starting project with lots of potential, meeting really open hearted people and having the time and space to experience the natural environment around us on a deeper level. I am really grateful of having had the chance of being part of this one month process, it gave me deeper insights about my future journey and the way I want to invest my energy.
some infos regarding the internship can be found here:
Now after this long trip I finally arrived in Australia, the mother country of Permaculture! It feels so exiting and lots of new stuff to explore and discover, I started the 12 month Practical Farm Leading Hand Certificate at Permaculture Research Institue Sunshine Coast and I am really looking forward to deepen my understanding and learning’s in this established Farm and Project and also feel at this moment its time to stay and ground in one place for a while and have people around me I can learn from plus be involved in one place, one piece of earth for a longer period of time to gain a deeper connection.
The plan is the work and learn here at PRI Sunshine Coast for 24month,to gain a Diploma in Practical Permaculture from the Permaculture Research Institute and be afterwards able to manage my own project in any part of this world, be involved in permaculture aid work or become a permaculture farm manager and consultant.
I am grateful for all that has happened so far to bring me here and exited for what’s going to happen next, I will continue to keep you posted about my future journeys although for now there will be a time of settling down for a while ahead……
more info’s here on my blog:
or to follow Roman on Permacultureglobal.org, please click here.