Monday, January 18, 2010

a bit about permaculture


Prime Directive:

The only ethical decision is to take responsibility for our own existence and that of our children.

A Definition:

Permaculture (permanent agriculture) is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive ecosystems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. It is the harmonious integration of landscape and people providing their food, energy, shelter, and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way. Without permanent agriculture there is no possibility of a stable social order.

The Ethical Basis of Permamculture:

1. Care of the Earth: Provision for all life systems to continue and multiply.

2. Care of People: Provision for people to access those resources ncessary to their exisitence.

3. Fair share: By governing our own needs, we can set resources aside to further the above principles.

Design Principles:

1. Work with nature not against it.

2. The problem is the solution.

3. Make the least change for the greatest possible effect.

4. The yield of a system is theoretically unlimited.

5. Everything gardens.

Design Strategies:

1. Observer and interact

2. Catch and store energy

3. Obtain a yield

4. Apply self regulation and accept feedback.

5. Use and value renewable resources and services.

6. Produce no waste.

7. Design from patterns to details

8. Integrate rather than segregate.

9. Use small and slow solutions.

10. Use and value diversity.

11. Use edges and value the marginal.

12. Creatively use and respond to change.

This last set of Design Strategies comes from Krissa Smith. Everything else comes directly from _Permaculture: A Designers' Manual_ by Bill Mollison.

I've posted this information so has to have a permanent link to some basic information about permaculautre. Frankly I'm tired of reading gross mischaracterizations of permculture all over the Internet. If you'd like to critique permaculture that's great. Start by actually reading a book about it. Here's a list of them.

Gaia's Garden
Permaculture: A Designers' Manual
Introduction to Permaculture
Permaculture: Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability
Permaculture Two

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