Permaculture Q&A’s From Quarantine Part 5

This video is Part 5 of a series. The series playlist can be found, here:

Questions overview and key takeaways: Below are: 1) a summary of the topics addressed by each question, and a timestamp; 2) Below each question summary are key takeaways from Geoff’s answer.

Q1: Permaculture economics 0:24

We are about making a living, not just making money. Firstly, we try to work with systems that provide our own needs: food, water, energy, etc. A big part of this is reducing our requirements by clever design. This makes life meaningful, and it lessens our need for cash. Then, we can do jobs that we truly love and do them very well because we don’t need to work all the time.

Q2: Red, compost worms eating cabbage plants 3:32

Compost worms don’t live in the soil. They live in organic matter atop the soil. They might live in between cabbage leaf sheaths, but they only eat decomposing organic material. They could be there because of a large population of worms in a well-mulched garden, but they likely aren’t eating the crop.

Q3: Iodine and selenium deficiencies a result of farming 4:50

A diet with a reasonable amount of fish will provide iodine. These deficiencies can be the result of pH balance as well. There can be iodine deficiency due to radioactivity rather than lack of it in the food. Bare soil agriculture and heavy irrigation does leach out iodine and selenium, but compost gardening will provide a full mineral count in the soil.

Q4: Living with Cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) 9:50

Take on rampancy with rampancy. Find some kind of other groundcover or small bush, something which can overtake the Cogongrass. It’ll likely be some kind of fast-growing groundcover and/or leguminous seed that can be chopped and dropped multiple times. That should be seeded four times as thickly as recommended. Overpower it then plant into productive crops.

Q5: What to do with soils that have had Round Up on them 11:55

Again, overpowering with green manures that can be cut and dropped on the soil for fast organic matter cycles. For immediate gardens, it’s possible to make really high raised beds (at least 18 inches) with soil from elsewhere. The rain will then filter down, away from the food plants, and slowly leach the chemicals away. It takes about three years to get back to clean.

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About Geoff:

Geoff is a world-renowned permaculture consultant, designer, and teacher. He has established permaculture demonstration sites that function as education centers in all the world’s extreme climates — information on the success of these systems is networked through the Permaculture Research Institute and the website.

About Permaculture:

Permaculture integrates land, resources, people and the environment through mutually beneficial synergies – imitating the no waste, closed-loop systems seen in diverse natural systems. Permaculture applies holistic solutions that are applicable in rural and urban contexts and at any scale. It is a multidisciplinary toolbox including agriculture, water harvesting and hydrology, energy, natural building, forestry, waste management, animal systems, aquaculture, appropriate technology, economics, and community development.

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