Archive for August, 2010


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“The Organic Gardener’s Handbook of Natural Insect and Disease Control” and other “Full View” online books can be found here.

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I hope you this email finds you well. I wanted to give you an update on the permaculture project at Daraja Academy. It has been amazing, you would be very proud! This past weekend, the academy had an “Earth & Me” seminar focused on the importance of the environment and the power of the people to maintain the land.

The Kenyan students learned about permaculture practices such as compost, chook domes, swales, among many other things. These types of methods are especially important for the girls since farming is a way of life for many of their families. Learning best practices is extremely valuable to them.

For detailed information on the weekend, I have posted a public facebook album that documents the entire weekend along with pictures. There is also a blog post and flickr gallery. If you would be interested, it would be wonderful if you shared the work of these dedicated young women on your blog! They truly embraced the program and left the seminar as environmentalists!

Best wishes from Kenya,

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The Vegetannual



animalvegetablemiracle.com writes…

“Take a minute to study this creation – an imaginary plant that bears over the course of one growing season a cornucopia of all the different vegetable products we can harvest.  We’ll call it a vegetannual …”

PS: Reverse the month order for the southern hemisphere.



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Patternlitercy.com writes…

“The Third Ethic of Permaculture

Finding a Sense of Surplus

(Published in Permaculture Activist No. 46)

It’s easy to grasp the wisdom in the first two of permaculture’s three ethical principles. The benefits of “care for the earth” and “care for people,” are obvious, and it’s not a difficult step to put those principles into practice. But then comes that third, more challenging principle, “share the surplus.” That’s where some of us waver a bit. How large a pile do we need to store up before some of it spills over into the category of surplus? What if we give the surplus away and then badly need it tomorrow?…”

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Permaculture Reflections writes…

“I am going to give you an outline of what permaculture is, how permaculture design is done and how it can be applied to urban environments. In order to explain the design process, I am going to be mentioning a number of things that might appear to have no relevance to the urban situation. I do this to explain the principles of permaculture design and hopefully give you a core understanding of how and why I make the suggestions I do.

Before I start jumping into things, I think it’s important to give some definitions. First and most importantly is defining permaculture. The name permaculture was coined by combining permanent and agriculture and permanent and culture. Sustainability was not a buzz word back in the 70s when permaculture was developed. Simply put, permaculture is system for designing sustainable human environments. That means meeting people’s needs for food, water, shelter, energy, waste control and less tangible needs such as community structure and services. It’s also environmentally specific, so the systems I have designed on my land are different from the ones I have designed in semi-arid India, temperate Japan or temperate and sub-tropical Australia or the proposals for a project in tropical Uganda later this year…”

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Another good reference in urban design


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All about birds

With more than 800 species of birds in the U.S. and Canada, it’s easy for a beginning bird watcher to feel overwhelmed by possibilities. Field guides seem crammed with similar-looking birds arranged in seemingly haphazard order.

Bird Identification Skills


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