It´s a very big theme…Since it is embracing the whole circle of life.
The word Permaculture is a fusion between Permanent and Agriculture. This is how it started out. To try to make as self sustained production of food as possible.
it is the sience of working together with nature, instead of working against it.
The natural relationship between us in this world, plants, animals and human existence – how to evolve in a sustainable way.
It can be difficult to understand just by reading a description of it. What is fantastic is the practical part, to really see how it works. So in the following posts I will give you some examles of methods we learnt on this journey. But first..
The permaculture movement was initiated by Bill Mollison, when he first introduced the term ‘Permaculture’ to the world, along with his student, David Holmgren around 1978. Both these ecologists together developed a new alternative to conventional agriculture which was self sustaining and maintains a ecological balance.
Another one of Mollisons students, Geoff Lawton, made a broad study in Australia, South America and some in North America. He have so far made two films; Establishing a Food Forest (2008)- basically the same as forest gardening, – and soils (2010). I´ve seen the last one, he´s fantastically enthusiastic, and I learnt a lot! Like how to make a 18 day compost, how to warm water trough a compost, used for central heating in a house, or just the shower. How the soil works, what it needs, and how to make a instent garden..
When I talked with Laura, the head gardener of Awakened life project we attended in Portugal, I asked her about taking a gardening education. -“The atmost important thing to learn, is about soils. Because this is the basis for all plants. Then you can learn more about gardening from this point.”
Of course, the way of Permaculture has always existed, it is not something invented in 1978. Like the forest gardening, it is a gathering of natural principles and methods used as long as mankind has been doing agriculture.
There are so many different way to do permaculture. The specters are wide, from the natural and revolutional farming of Masanobu Fukuoka, to todays machine-loving modern SeppHolzer, who develope natural farming in colder climate countries.
In the botanical garden of Coimbra, Portugal, they have a transition project. I learnt about other aspects of this kind of farming: How permaculture can help people in this economic crises several countries find themselves in. In Portugal the unemployment rates are so high, and many people get misused in work situations because of the panic of loosing their jobs. This project give people the knowledge of growing their own food in cities, so at least they dont have to starve! Maby even get self sufficient and take control of their own life situations. I attended one meeting, watching this film, showing how Cuba used permaculture as a very effective way to get trough their crices in the early nineties.
“The Power Of Comunity: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil”
In the following posts I will add some of my experiences from Fran & Antonios garden, and some notes from a thick brick of a book Fran got from a 3 weeks course on Permaculture on New Zeland. And some experiences from Portugal, working in a big communial permaculture garden… Hang on!