Je bekijkt de reis...
Reisverslag Can permaculture feed the world?
30 augustus 2014
Can permaculture feed the world?
Another update from me! The apples are almost ready and we are planning to start picking them coming Wednesday. The juice shed has been painted, rejected apple juice bottles are emptied, and boxes, bottles, and caps are in stock. Let the juicing begin!
I have had a really relaxing weekend last week with an extra day off on Monday (because of Bank Holiday). I was lucky because the Growers went to a festival so I could sleep, bath, and cook in their house and that was really nice. I have made green tomato chutney and watched all episodes of The Great British Bake Off (that is by far my favourite programme).
Another WWOOF’er arrived last Saturday and it made me realise only small conversations and working together instead of being on your own all the time make such a difference. Means I am quite happy to have someone else around even though he is from Spain and find difficulties talking English sometimes but that does not make sense at all. I really start realising and appreciating how important it is to have people around you.
In terms of permaculture, I still find it very difficult to define the word ‘permaculture’ just because it is so complicated in a way that there is no answer, in my opinion. Permaculture is a design that includes many ideas and skills. Bill Morrison (found of permaculture, has given many permaculture courses on our farm) explains it as follows:
‘Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature; of protracted and thoughtful observation rather than protracted and thoughtless labour; and of looking at plants and animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single-product system’.
Personally, I find this explanation very useful:
‘Permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive systems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. It is the harmonious integration of the landscape with people providing their food, energy, shelter, and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way’.
That makes it complex for people to understand why permaculture is so important and not accepted in some countries. Yesterday Matt asked me if I already have an answer on my main objective ‘can permaculture feed the world’. And no, I don’t have it yet. Although I am reading a lot about it and talking, listening to others. It is funny since I see many articles and debates coming through about a new paradigm and the movement of chancing food production in more sustainable ways. Seems like the topic is really ‘hot’ at the moment!
It is interesting to be part of a farm where I see how essential it is to buy locally produced food, take very good care of your soil, observe the area you want to grow your food in, understand where the wind comes from, what the weather conditions are, where falls light and shadow in, and only grow food that suits your type of area (seasonal, no heated greenhouses to produces strawberries during Christmas). Create diversity and let everything grow in its natural state. Combine annual and perennial crops to have good yields during the year. Let nature work for you instead of you working for nature. It’s just common sense, isn’t it?
On the other hand, it could be difficult to depend on the weather and failing yields, that is something you can’t control. But it teaches you to be creative and compromise on the decisions you have to make. In the end, we can’t continue to rely on our fossil fuels because it is true someday it will finish.
Furthermore, working with the Growers on Wednesday every week is very nice learning opportunity too. I haven’t had any experience in growing crops and cultivating food, weeding, harvesting, and sowing so the combination between working on Ragmans talking about permaculture, thinking about permaculture, and food issues together with putting it into practise is very useful!
Tomorrow a two weeks permaculture course will start and I hope it will be possible for me to attend some sessions. We are also busy organising the gathering of centres next month which will be interesting too. We are inviting other ‘centres’ (educational farms) to come and talk about their experiences, ups and downs, future possibilities. This will be part of my placement as well and I will have to give a session too …
Anyway, lots of things are going on here on the farm. Yesterday Pete told me that airplanes are flying over our area (and our farm) unloading chemicals as an experiment to check if it will be possible to control the weather. This kind of things make me very @#$%*! .
At the end of October I will go to Trill Farm (Axminster, Devon) for two weeks just before I fly back to Holland. I think it would be nice to experience another farm as well. Maybe I will go to another farm during the weeks before that but I am not yet sure about that. After that I will go to London for 4 or 5 days :)!
30 augustus 2014 14:57 | Door: Rens
Heel wat plannen. Klinkt goed. Ik hopp dat je alle sessies mag volgen om zo antwoordcoupon je vraag te krijgen. Interessant idee dat permaculture maar ik vraag me af of we daarmee het voedselprobleem kunnen oplossen dat de wereld te wachten staat
Succes met de appeloogst!
31 augustus 2014 10:59 | Door: Marrit
Wauw, wat een leerzaam verhaal Yanthe! Ik ben benieuwd wat het antwoord op je vraag gaat zijn na al deze ervaringen.
Veel plezier en succes met alles wat je te wachten staat!
31 augustus 2014 21:30 | Door: Mam
Leuk, naar Axminster. Komen we je toch gewoon weer opzoeken? Xxx
18 september 2014 22:19 | Door: Janna
Ik heb je blog gevonden!
Leuk om te lezen dat je zo'n toffe stage gevonden hebt. Het klinkt alsof je daar goed op je plek bent. Heb je nog wel wat muzikaals om al je werk mee af te wisselen ;)
Veel plezier daar!
tot snel weer,