Masanobu Fukuoka on Natural Farming   Leave a comment

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Here’s a brief excerpt taken from The Natural Way of Farming:

“I have begun thinking that the natural farming experience may be of some help, however small, in revegetating the world and stabilizing the food supply.  Although some will call the idea outlandish, I propose that the seeds of certain plants be sown over the deserts in clay pellets to help green those barren lands.

These pellets can be prepared by first mixing the seeds of green manure trees–such as black wattle–that grow in areas with an annual rainfall of less than 2 inches, and the seeds of clover, alfalfa, bur clover, and other types of green manure, with grain and vegetable seeds.

The mixture is coated first with a layer of soil, then one of clay, to form microbe-containing clay pellets.  These finished pellets could then be scattered by hand over the deserts and savannahs.

Once scattered, the seeds within the hard clay pellets will not sprout until rain has fallen and conditions are just right for germination.  Nor will they be eaten by mice and birds. A year later, several of the plants will survive, giving a clue as to what is suited to the climate and the land.

In certain countries to the south, there are reported to be plants that will grow on rocks or trees that store water. Anything will do, as long as we get the deserts blanketed rapidly with a green cover of grass. This will bring back the rains.

Deserts do not form because there is no rain; rather, rain ceases to fall because the vegetation has disappeared.”

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Posted November 20, 2011 by alex hroz in Natural Farming

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Sepp Holzer’s Permaculture: Hybrid Seeds and Genetically Modified Seeds (a brief excerpt)   Leave a comment

Sepp Holzer's Permaculture“Hybrid seeds (F1 varieties) are entirely unsuited to permaculture systems.  These seeds have been bred so that most of them no longer have the ability to reproduce.  They do not breed true (in other words they cannot pass on the characteristics and qualities of their variety every time) and must always be bought new again–much to the satisfaction of the seed companies.

They come from homozygous inbred lines, are frequently sterile and are not suited to varying local conditions.  They give good yields, but are more susceptible to disease, because they are not suited to local conditions.  All of this coupled with the crops being grown as a monoculture leads to the population of single species increasing to large numbers and later leads to the use of pesticides.

Genetically modified seeds are even more questionable!  In my opinion, it is a crime against Nature to alter the genetic make-up of a living thing in this way.  Anyone who treats Nature with consideration and understanding will feel the same.

The results and repercussions of using genetic modification in plant cultivation and animal breeding cannot yet be foreseen and it seems that its use can barely be regulated or kept in check any more.  As a result of specialization and modernization, we have almost entirely lost the plant diversity we once had and, with it, many resources in farming and gardening.

The fact that in the EU the propagation and marketing of seeds has been taken away from farmers and has been left to agricultural companies is particularly questionable.

Once I became aware of this, I made a great effort to propagate the seeds of every conceivable cultivated plant suited to the Krameterhof.  The plant diversity on the Krameterhof provides me with a kind of living seed bank.  Visitors to the Krameterhof are allowed to harvest seeds in small amounts for their own use during tours of the farm.”

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Posted September 9, 2011 by alex hroz in Permaculture

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Sepp Holzer’s Permaculture: How To Develop A Feel For Your Soil (a brief excerpt)   Leave a comment

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“There is a tried and tested way to determine the soil type. It is called the ‘finger test’ and it is very easy to carry out.

To perform the test take some fresh soil, (not dried out) and roll it between your palms or finger and thumb. The stickiness and how easy the earth is to mould varies from soil type to soil type. You can also find out how large the grains of soil are in the same way.

The first thing I determine is whether the soil is ‘light’ and made of sand or loamy sand, ‘medium’ and made of sandy loam or ‘heavy’ and made of loam, clay loam or clay. The ‘weight’ of the soil depends on how well the materials it is composed of bind together.

To begin with, I try to roll the earth between my palms to about the thickness of a pencil. I this does not work it means that the soil is sandy. Otherwise I am dealing with at least a ‘medium’ soil of sandy loam. If I can roll the earth to half the thickness of the previous one, then it is heavy loam or clay. To tell the difference between the two I can break the roll in two. Shiny layers indicate clay, whereas matte layers indicate loam.”

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Posted September 8, 2011 by alex hroz in Permaculture

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Growing Your Greens Checks Out Oregon Food Bank   Leave a comment

Posted September 2, 2011 by alex hroz in organic gardening

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Organic Vegetables: Growing Organic Veggies In Your Front Yard   Leave a comment

Aquaponics: Learn As You Grow   Leave a comment

Posted August 22, 2011 by alex hroz in Aquaponics

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“Fresh” The Movie   Leave a comment

Posted August 21, 2011 by alex hroz in ecological films

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