Archive for January, 2012

Permaculture Media writes…

How to Start Natural Beekeeping - for free!

“Beekeeping has suddenly become popular again, having been in decline for more than half a century.

Honeybees have been in the news for all the wrong reasons: collapsing colonies, pesticide poisoning and parasitic mites – and all this bad news seems to have triggered an almost primitive desire in people to want to help and nurture this vitally-important insect that – despite all our scientific advances – we still do not fully understand.c

Ever since I can remember, beekeepers have been regarded by the media as harmless, doddery old men (mostly), who do strange things with wooden boxes full of bees, while dressed in sartorially suspect garb. However, this image is beginning to change, with more and more women and young people being attracted to the idea of learning this ancient craft and a new urgency in the air about preserving our honeybees for their important role as pollinators, as well as for their own sake…”

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Benefits of Soil Microbes

Rivenrock Gardens writes…

“The further you enter into it; the deeper it becomes”, Dante

Imagine if you will, having been shrunk down to a microscopic size. You are now smaller than an ameba, but larger than a bacterium. You live in the ground, in a microscopic world of one celled and larger creatures. Some of them are living in the thin film of moisture around the soil particles. As you roam around, knee deep in the water layer around a large grainy sand particle, you see in the water film a multitude of animals and algae floating around in the tiny currents in this small world of water. Some of these small microscopic creatures are animals, catching the algae and bacteria and eating them. Some of the bacteria are dining on algae, and also the dead bodies of the animals that live in this film of water clinging by static action to the sand grain.

You however are large enough to leave this film of water and venture to another particle nearby. This one is up against the sand grain; it is a particle of compost. This particular piece is so decomposed that it is not possible to distinguish what it once was. But now it is a piece of humus, decomposed plant or animal matter. It is a fluffy segment larger than the sand particle. As you get closer to it you see that is so open and porous, its many cavities and cracks are full of tiny organisms. Some are the same as were around the sand, and some are different. This piece also has water in and around it, but since it is so porous it has soaked up water in mush the same way a sponge would. Its’ many cracks and fissures are full of water, in fact this piece of detritus is carrying more water than its’ own weight. And in all this water and organic matter there is a veritable colony of organisms at work, digesting the organic compounds of the compost, as they work at it their own waste products are released into the water in the particle. These compounds are worked upon in turn by even smaller creatures, and some substances from them form acids that help to etch the soil particles and hasten the breakdown of the material…”

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Adam from Permablitz Melbourne shows Sydney how its done!

Adam Grubb founded Permablitz as part of a crew of Melbourne permaculturalists in 2006. Since then, Melbourne Permblitz has delivered many, many successful permablitzes in the greater Melbourne area, and the concept of Permablitz has spread to Sydney, Adelaide, Alice Springs, Darwin, Canberra, Tasmania, Bega, the Sunshine Coast, California, Montreal, Istanbul and Uganda.

So what is a Permablitz?

Permablitz (noun): An informal gathering involving a day on which a group of at least two people come together to achieve the following:

– create or add to edible gardens where someone lives
– share skills related to permaculture and sustainable living
– build community networks
– have fun

Permablitzes are free events, open to the public, with free workshops, shared food, where you get some exercise and have a wonderful time. To be defined as a permablitz each event must also be preceded by a permaculture design by a designer with a Permaculture Design Certificate.

The network runs on reciprocity, and in order to qualify for a permablitz you usually need to come to “3 or so” first, although there can be exceptions in this case.

Many thanks to Milkwood for putting on this great free event!
Filmed at Alexandria Park Community Center
Mon, 16 Jan, 2012

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Nature by numbers

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Meghalayas’ Living Bridge

A bridge in Meghalaya constructed by the living roots of Fig Trees.  Simply amazing!

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Permaculture Lifestyles writes… “Interesting idea to help keep your pond from freezing.”

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