Benefits of Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting, the process that involves collecting and storing rainwater from various surfaces for future use, is an easy, affordable and sustainable way for households and organizations to meet their water needs. Rising populations, high processing costs and increasing numbers of people moving to large cities are putting more pressure on water providers to supply them with adequate water to meet their daily needs. As a result, it is important for anyone looking to get access to sufficient water quantities to consider investing in rainwater harvesting systems, and reduce their reliance on municipal councils, water bodies and other suppliers of this precious commodity. Below are a few benefits of incorporating the practice of harvesting rainwater into your lifestyle:
1. Affordable water
Americans pay an average of $50 every month to have water piped into their homes. In addition statistics indicate that Americans spend $100 per person yearly to purchase bottled water. Conversely, setting up a basic rainwater harvesting system will set you back about $3000 but this can be easily recouped in savings on your water bill and ultimately prove to be the most cost effective option in the long run.

2. Self sufficiency
Once you set up your own rain harvesting system, your reliance on water providers is brought down to a minimum and you will only have to depend on this water source in cases of extreme drought and other rare occurrences. You are also less likely to experience price fluctuations that occur when the cost of processing goes up due to an increase in oil prices, water treatment chemicals and other materials used to treat and clean water.

3. Soil conservation
Harvesting rainwater and directing it into a central place for storage means that there is less impact on the ground, as well as reduced runoff which ultimately prevents soil erosion, leaching of nutrients from the ground and even waterlogged soils that are detrimental to agriculture.

4. Useful for irrigation
In addition to reducing their reliance on third parties to supplier their water, many people are also choosing to grow their own organic food that is healthier and safer than store bought options that are produced using harmful pesticides and fertilizers. Stored rainwater is making this process easier by giving both rural and urban farmers access to a cheap and easily available source of water to irrigate their crops and ensure a year long and constant supply of food for them and their families.

Rainwater harvesting will become more and more important as people discover the benefits they can reap from this time honored practice. Anyone looking for an affordable, sustainable and easily utilizable source of water would do well to consider investing in this system. If you have decided that rainwater harvesting is the way to go, you can learn more about this sustainable practice at the Open Permaculture School and Regenerative Leadership Institute (

Advantages of Permaculture Guilds

Permaculture guilds incorporate various symbiotic animal and plant species into a system built around a central plant in order to ensure maximum production. The organisms in the system work together to ensure that the entire system can meet its needs for food, light, protection and other elements necessary to ensure that it continues to grow and produce items that meet human needs. A permaculture guild has several advantages to offer including:

  1. Optimal use of space

Climbers and supporters in a permaculture guild allow even farmers with the most limited amount of space to grow sufficient quantities of food. In addition, it is possible to grow diverse types of plants to meet your needs for a balanced diet without needing too much space.

  1. Increased soil nutrition

Many permaculture guilds utilize nitrogen fixing plants such as legumes, clover and Lucerne which convert atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia and fix it into the soil for use by other plants. In addition, mulches, composts and animal manure help to increase the nutrition of the soil and ultimately result in increased plant yields.

  1. Pest Control

In addition to integrating several plants in a symbiotic scheme, guild planting also uses several beneficial insects and animals for pollination, to provide fertilizer and control pests.  Ducks can be used to control slugs, ladybirds eat aphids and birds eat insects while they are still in their larvae stage before they can begin to wreck havoc on your plants. Planting insect and animal attracting plants and flowers will help to draw these beneficial species to your garden and keep pests at bay. Using natural methods and leaving out chemicals means that these dangerous substances are less likely to seep into the produce you grow and put your health at risk.

  1. Better tasting food

Some plants enhance the flavor of other plants around them if they are planted together. For instance, strawberries intercropped with borage will result in a great improvement in the flavor of the former.

  1. Guarantee of yields

Layering or stacking different plants in a guild allows you to plant as many different species as you need to in order to ensure that the entire system provides you with adequate yields to meet your food or fuel needs. Having diverse species guarantees a harvest as even if some of the crops fail, you still have backup yields from the other plants.

Permaculture guilds have myriad benefits to offer adherents. This type of planting is a sustainable and renewable way to meet your material needs without adverse effects on the environment. If you wish to learn more about how permaculture guilds can improve your life, the Open Permaculture School and Regenerative Leadership Institute offers several courses to help you get started on this important and life changing practice.

5 Things to Know Before Buying Mulch

When you put some mulch over the soil where your plants sit, there are numerous benefits. Mulch insulates and keeps the temperature steady thus shielding the roots from hot spells and cold snaps. It prevents the moisture in the soil from evaporating, so you water your plants fewer times. You can decide to make mulch with the necessary materials or buy some. Take a look at some things you should mull over when you want to purchase mulch.

  • The Source

Most organic mulches that are sold commercially except straw are byproducts from the lumber sector. Mulches from great home-improvement stores and garden centers or mulches from trustworthy landscape supply corporations are most likely safe and clean. Inexpensive bags of mulch may have waste with toxic materials, lead paint, and metals.

  • Its Purpose

When choosing mulch, bear in mind the plant on which you intend to you use it. Shredded hardwood that has a medium texture can work in most areas. However, when you want a permanent mulch for example around trees, large chunks such as pine bark nuggets are more durable. For your vegetable bed, fluffy mulch that can decompose easily such as straw is ideal.

  • Bag or Bulk?

Commercial mulch is usually in bags or truckloads. The mulch in bags can be more expensive, but it is simpler to handle, particularly if you have no space for piles of bulky mulch. Buying in bags is beneficial in that you can purchase various types of mulches for different purposes. If you only have a small garden that you only need to refresh, a bag would be a perfect choice. You can learn about where to order bulk mulch from Open Permaculture and Regenerative Leadership Institute.

Bulk mulch requires some labor as you may have to shovel a full wheelbarrow to where you need it and then empty the mulch around your plants. The prices of the mulch vary so when shopping, let the seller know what the purpose of the mulch is and estimate the price of the material they suggest for that purpose. Remember the delivery distance may have an impact on the cost.

  • Prices

Before buying mulch, take some time to visit various garden stores so that you can compare the prices. When buying bags, remember to confirm the return policy of the store from which you purchase. Most stores often allow you to give back any extra bags of unopened mulch in case you buy too many of them.

Benefits of Greywater Re-use

Greywater refers to waste water from households that does not contain fecal matter in it. So technically, it is all the waste water from the house watering system, that is the kitchen, shower and other such systems, except the toilet. This water can be re-used in outside gardens and to water other plant systems directly from the house. Systems can be installed through which the water can be piped directly to the plants outside or to a reservoir tank from which there can then be controlled watering of the plants to minimize waste. Greywater has a lot of benefits and these include;

Water Treatment Costs and Resource Reduction

When the water is pumped into the septic water systems, the end goal is usually to recycle it by filtering, purifying and treating it so that it can then be pumped back for use at home. These processes usually take up a lot of resources. Chemicals for purification, larger reservoir tanks maintenance costs and cleaning costs, lots of energy costs and not to mention the amount of energy required to pump the water back to the whole population. By re-using greywater, the amount of water that goes into the purification systems is reduced and gradually, with more and more re-use, the effects can be felt. There is an overall reduction in the costs and energy required to recycle the water.

Encourages Eco Friendly Living

Normally, we do not always pay attention to the eco friendliness of what we use in the house. Certain chemicals, such as the ones found in detergents, are harmful to the environment. By re-using greywater however, one becomes more aware of the impact of the toxicity or lack thereof of the things used within the household. In the long run, the re-use of greywater encourages less and less use of toxic substances and an adoption of eco friendly techniques.

Reduces septic system overload

Constant use of septic systems eventually takes its toll on them. With more and more water draining into these systems, and a reduced capacity in the efficiency of recycling the water and pumping it back, the septic systems experience an overload. Every once in a while a septic tank may blow open and this is a sanitation nightmare. By reducing the amount of waste water flowing into these systems  through greywater re-using, you contribute to the reduction of the septic system overload.

More information on greywater, its uses, systems that can be used and more benefits can be learnt at the Open Permaculture School and Regenerative Leadership Institute.

Anaerobic Composting

This is a process of making compost that does not use air. Anaerobic composting is reliant on bacteria and microbes that survive in oxygen deprived states or environments. It is a very slow process due to the lack of oxidation that tends to speed up decomposition. An anaerobic compost can stay for years before it can be considered mature or rather fit enough to harvest or to use. There is no exact way to monitor the compost since most times it is dug underground. Once covered, the compost is first of all decomposed by aerobic bacteria – those that require oxygen. This goes on until all the oxygen that was covered up with the compost is depleted, the bacteria are then rendered useless. Over time, anaerobic bacteria – those that do not use oxygen – begin acting on the compost. Continue reading Anaerobic Composting

Huge acres of China’s farmland are not fit for agriculture

For the rest of the world, China is a country that is big enough to grow food for the whole population and but in reality this statement is not 100% true. China is not capable of making their crops free of contamination. 8 million acres of agricultural land are not fit for growing crops.China is determined to grow a huge amount of crops from its land which put these lands very close to chemical plants and heavy industries hence raising the risks of contamination in the food. Officials revealed toxic metals and banned pesticides in this fields which can contaminate the crop. Rice with high level of cadmium is seen in the market. The chinese government is going to spend millions in this matter.

Read More…

New method of harvesting maple sap

mapleA new method of extracting maple sap can revolutionize the whole business. Scientist have found out a way to efficiently take maple sap from the trunks of saplings and increase syrup production. The idea behind it is that instead of using big trees in a forest, the new method would use young trees grown in tight rows, like Christmas trees. The Use of young trees also gives syrup makers more opportunity for genetic experiments and they don’t have to wait for the tree to grow also. The saplings will be cut and a vacuum is put into it to take the sap out. The syrup produced from these saplings will be identical in taste and color. The yield also increases in this way.

Read more…

Higher the CO2, lesser the nutritions

high_co2According to a recent study, crops in high CO2 atmosphere will have less nutrition in them. This a very serious issue for the future. Scientists usually predict that the yields of crops could be raised by higher atmospheric CO2, but its nutritious value will decrease . Samuel Myers of Harvard University has reported that the CO2 levels in coming years will probably reduce the levels of iron, protein, zinc etc in crops like rice, wheat and soybeans. The study found that nutrients changed unequally when CO2 was higher. Another experiment at the Long’s university shows that rising CO2 levels lowers the resistance of crops to pests. Myers suggests there should be a worldwide effort to develop new breeds of crops that show resistance to higher CO2 levels.

Read more…

Bees declared extinct 30 years ago are flying again

beeA type of short haired bumblebees which was last seen in 1986 in the UK has survived and are flying again thanks to the efforts of farmers and researchers. Researcher Nikki Gammans has found these bees for the first time in more than 25 years in the summer of 2012. These bees are conserved and are now growing in numbers. Despite efforts from Dungeness and Romney Marsh which is a national nature reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest, the main key to this success is the role of nearby farmers, who have planted acres of wildflowers in order to make sure the bees have an outstanding source of pollen to sustain. The number of bees seen in crop fields are increasing and the environmental stewardship schemes have also helped a lot in this project.

Read more…

Corn picking by hand, fun competition for farmers

cornThe developments in the agricultural sector with the help of technology has benefited us but at the same time caused problems for biodiversity. Rigorous agriculture impacts on our habitat, but approach to landscape planning can make farming and native biodiversity to coexist without any harm. The planning should be in such a way that it doesn’t harm the organisms and also allow effective farming at the same time.  A balanced way of system is needed for both the local native species and human activities. The 10:20:40:30 landscape planning guidelines provide many suggestions but not all landholders are able to apply these landscape planning guidelines. Native species will survive in farming if proper biodiversity conservation plans are designed and implemented.

Read more…

Proper landscape planning is the key to good biodiversity on farms

landscapeThe developments in the agricultural sector with the help of technology has benefited us but at the same time caused problems for biodiversity. Rigorous agriculture impacts on our habitat, but approach to landscape planning can make farming and native biodiversity to coexist without any harm. The planning should be in such a way that it doesn’t harm the organisms and also allow effective farming at the same time.  A balanced way of system is needed for both the local native species and human activities. The 10:20:40:30 landscape planning guidelines provide many suggestions but not all landholders are able to apply these landscape planning guidelines. Native species will survive in farming if proper biodiversity conservation plans are designed and implemented.

Read more..

Flying Drones Help In Better Crop Management


J. Craig Williams is a crop and dairy educator and is using and experimenting with drones for better crop management in Pennsylvania. He is testing with drones to see potential uses of drone technology for purposes such as fertilizer use patterns and observing pest control. Till now soybean crops are monitored usually through visual inspections which is time consuming. These drones can help in better crop management by providing visuals of the entire crop field from high above in high resolution images. These pictures can will be very useful to make decisions on when and where to spray pesticides in the crop. He believes that drones can help push agriculture into the future and farmers can manage their crops more effectively.

Read more..

Fungi Helps In Reduction Of Use Of Fertilizers In Agriculture


The next revolution in the field of agriculture may be started by fungi. According to a latest research, the fungi help increasing food production for the ever increasing needs of people without using huge amounts of fertilizers. Ian Sanders of the University of Lusanne in Switzerland has studied that a type of fungi called mycorrhizal fungi found in symbiosis with plant roots. When these fungi symbiose with plants, they tend to develop because the fungi take the essential nutrient phosphate for the plant. With the help of technological breakthroughs, scientists now can produce huge quantities of this fungus in a gel form for easy transportation. The tests are going on to check the effectiveness of this gel on crops in Colombia. With this gel they can produce a huge yield of potato crops and is very effective.

Read more..

Take Right Measures To Tackle Climate Change


The global climate change is one of the most important concerns for the living beings. It not only affects us, but the whole world. In today’s world agriculture has become a more fundamental part of actions against climate change. Climate change is a growing threat to agricultural and food security. We need to reduce carbon emissions and should start adapting agriculture to a warmer world instantaneously. The growing temperatures can also hold back development and can lead to larger crop loss. The rich nations with their technology can find ways to sustain, but the poor countries will face the nature’s heat.

Read more..

GMO Wheat From a Decade Ago Has Emerged in Oregon


A farmer from Oregon has discovered that he accidently planted GMO wheat in his field. Later on it is tested by the USDA and determined to be a seed developed by agricultural biotech company Monsanto. Many European nations that import food from the U.S our food have raised concerns about GMO wheat as GM crops are banned in Europe. Although it is not scientifically proven that genetically modified foods have any harmful effects, but still risk is involved in human health. This kind of incident has negatives effects for trading of crops between nations and the question arises that how this seeds get there and will the government do something about GMO testing and labeling.

Read more..

N-FIX: The Technology That Enables Crops To Take Nitrogen From Air


There are only a small number of plants which have the capacity to obtain nitrogen from the air with the help of some bacteria which can fix nitrogen naturally. But the greater part of plants have to attain nitrogen by using synthetic nitrogen fertilizers, which is very harmful for the environment. Professor Edward Cocking from The University of Nottingham has developed an exceptional method of inserting nitrogen fixing bacteria directly into the plant roots which make the plants take nitrogen from the air. The technology is known as N-Fix and provides a sustainable and strong solution to overuse of fertilizer and Nitrogen pollution. This technology is licensed to Azotic technology Ltd. and will be commercially available with 2-3 years.

Read more…

In the U.S. Young Rural Kids are Encouraged to Build up an Interest in Science Before They Become Farmers


In America, the rural kids are taught how to build rockets before they become real farmers. They get primary knowledge of science at an early age. You can see rockets built by children in different country fairs in agricultural lands. An organization named 4-H is behind these launches. They provide scientific knowledge and help in shaping the character of the kids. People in other lands think farmers are uneducated but 4-H is proving them wrong. American farmers think differently and that’s why they have advanced in this sector. They use GM crops and all the necessary scientific technologies for a better yield. With initiative by 4-H and an early interest in science and technology, they will grow more.

Read more…

Have You Ever Thought of Tomatoes and Potatoes Growing Together in One Plant? Hard to Believe But it’s True


One of UK’s largest Horticultural Mail Order “Thompson & Morgan” has launched a very innovative plant called “TomTato”, which is a plant that produces potatoes and tomatoes in the same time at one plot in a pot. These plants are not genetically modified plants but are natural and hand-grafted by highly skilled persons. A single plant can produce 500 sweet cherry tomatoes while producing potatoes at the same time. After 15 years of experiments, the Company has produced the plant in commercial basis for £14.99 each. These plants can be grown easily indoors or outdoors, in a large pot or bag.

Read more…

Have you heard about the new protein SUMO that stimulates plant growth and increases Crop yields?


Growth repression in plants is caused due to a hormone called Gibberellin which destroys the growth oriented proteins in the plants. This can be a major problem in cultivation if the crops suffer from growth repression due to adverse weather conditions, such as water shortage or high salt content in the soil, in order to save energy. But a research team, led by the Durham Centre for Crop Improvement Technology, including experts at the University of Warwick have discovered an interesting fact that plants have their own natural ability to regulate their growth independently of Gibberellin, especially during adverse weather conditions by producing a modifying protein called SUMO. This protein interacts with the Gibberellin and removes the barrier to the growth of plants, leading to higher yields, even in extreme weather conditions.

Read more…

The Need of “Cover Crops” Farming


The year 2012 has set a record in the 10 hottest year’s list. Shockingly all the top ten have listed during the last 15 years only. Climate change is no more a fear now but a reality that occurred which resulted severe drought in farmlands. United States Department of Agriculture has already declared wheat crop disaster in many areas. It actually damaged the winter wheat crops as it did to corn and soya so far. The theory of rotational crops like corn and soya helps each other fertile has been in jeopardy. Therefore lot of experts think that government should come out to help the farmers with the idea of nitrogen mixing cover crops during the off season with some extra benefits and keep the yield of production intact.

Read more…

GMO-Whether a boon or curse of science?


Whether GMO is good or bad still a major debate in biology? While answering a question in such a debate over the subject David Tribe, a geneticist and professor of biotechnology in the University of Melbourne has expressed his views that although a good number of scientists are against the idea, there are also few facts that have to be taken into consideration in its further development. People who support the idea have the facts that it has the advantage of staying out of toxic pesticides which eventually harm both human and animal. Besides killing the hunger, it will also help to fight against some serious diseases occurred due to the malnutrition with mineral and vitamin fortified seed of crops.

Read more…

The Irony of Using Pesticides and Insecticides


Beehives are severely under threat due to the pesticides used to save the crops from insects. In these process farmers often harms some useful insects along with the harmful one. One of the most common pesticides called neonicotinoids (neonics in short) which destroys the bee’s central nervous system similarly like nicotine for the human. The population of bees have been drastically falling down which also affecting the farming of almond, apple and blueberries etc. All the commercial beekeepers and the groups of almond and blueberry farmers have joined hands as both the industry largely depend upon the honey bee pollination and decided to circulate the awareness among the farmers against using such harmful pesticides. It also seeks the cooperation from the related Govt. agencies and agricultural chemical industries at the national level.

Read more…

The traumatic effect of Genetically Modified foods in Developed and Developing Countries


People are still suspicious over the impact of genetically modified crops in many of developed and developing countries worldwide. A thorough analysis of agronomics and economic impacts of are being done with the help of data collected from the sources like ISI Web of knowledge, Google Scholar, EconLit and AgEcon Search. Eligibility criteria for the 147 studies done included yield of crops, pesticides used, farmer’s profit reported after the several farm surveys and field trials around the world. As the study reveals the huge yield of production with the lesser usage of pesticides, it is quite evident that the farmers in these countries have been benefitted by this technology and thereby the trust is also being increased gradually.

Read more…

The Story of a Footballer Turned Farmer


An interesting story of a footballer turned farmer has been in the news recently on ESPN. Jason Brown aged 29 had signed a five-year contract to play for St Luis Rams @ $37.5 million in the NFL in the year 2009. But after playing for 3 seasons and earning $25 million from the contract till 2012, he suddenly opted out for farming to feed the under privileged. He learnt the farming tips from the videos in YouTube and acquired a 1,000 acre farm in North Carolina. He ignored a couple of lucrative offers including the Baltimore Ravens and even the hindrance from his agent to review the decision. He has already donated bulk of sweet potatoes and other veggies this season.

Read more…

New labeling rules could give consumers more information about their meat


A new labeling rule that went into full effect Saturday requires meatpackers and retailers to provide consumers with more information about where their meat comes from.

The country-of-origin labeling mandate (COOL) forces retailers and meatpackers to detail where the livestock from which meat came was born, raised and slaughtered. It applies to certain cuts of beef, veal, chicken, pork, lamb and goat sold in the supermarket. Processed, deli and ground meats are exempt from the new rules.

Previously, labels on most packages of meat only had to list the countries the meat passed through. Now there will be more details. For example, a steak may have a label that states that the animal was born in Canada, raised in the U.S. and slaughtered in the U.S.

Read more…

Six Sustainable Agricultural Practices


In many ways, permaculture was formulated as a response to the damaging and inefficient methods of modern industrial agricultural production. Bill Mollison and David Holmgren recognized that the way much of the food in the Western world, at least, is produced is damaging to the land, damaging to the native ecosystems it commandeers or borders, wasteful in the extreme and, in the end, damaging for us as consumers and guardians of the Earth.

Permaculture suggested an alternative rubric of food production focused on sustainability, diversity, localism, closed systems of energy to reduce waste, protection of nature, and cooperation rather than competition between producers. This was in counterpoint to the monoculture, large-scale, destructive method of commercial production.

Read more…

8 million acres of China’s farmland are too polluted to grow food


You’d think that China would be big enough that it could grow food for all the people who live there and keep that food clear of the worst contamination of its growing industrial production. But, nope, these two things are happening quite near each other, Reuters reports:

China’s determination to squeeze as much food and resources as possible from its land has put thousands of farms close to chemical plants, mines, and other heavy industries, raising the risks of contamination. …

Read more…

Six Steps for Setting up a Beehive


Bees are an important component of many ecosystems. Their role in the pollination of plants is essential for the propagation of many species, and in recent years concerns about declining bee populations have fuelled fears of a huge decrease in biodiversity and of blooming populations of pests that bees predate.

On a permaculture plot bees perform the same function. Planting a wide variety of plants with different blooms that appeal to the bees can help attract them to your plot, but the gardener could also consider installing a beehive on their site. Not only does this have the benefit of having the creatures permanently on the site to perform the important pollination functions, it has the secondary function of providing an edible product in the form of honey.

Read more…

A jolt for the science behind harvesting maple sap


Scientists at a research lab deep in the maple woods of northern Vermont have made a discovery that could revolutionize New England’s most tradition-steeped form of agriculture. But their work may also threaten a cherished way of life.

Experiments at the University of Vermont’s Proctor Maple Research Center show that maple sap — the raw material that sugar makers boil into syrup — can be efficiently vacuumed from the decapitated trunks of saplings, sharply increasing syrup production. That’s a radical departure from the centuries-old practice of inserting a small tap a few feet above the base of a mature tree, relying on the force of gravity and internal pressure to draw off the sap.

Read more…

Six Steps for Building a Swale


As it is central to life on Earth, so water is of crucial importance to the permaculture plot, providing the plants, livestock and wildlife with an essential element for their survival and growth. Water is also a finite resource. It is precious and should be treated as such. Therefore, permaculture design seeks to preserve and use water in the most sustainable and efficient ways. This includes harvesting rainwater, mulching and composting soil to help prevent excess evaporation from the surface, planting native species that are adapted to the rainfall condition in the area, and reusing water from the home in the garden.

Read more…

Six Sources of Renewable Energy


Ninety seven percent of scientists agree that man-made climate change is a real and present danger to the health of the planet. The emissions produced by the burning of fossil fuels is causing changes in the atmosphere that are impacting upon temperature, extreme weather events and rising ocean levels. Climate change is arguably the biggest threat to life on earth we currently face.

Read more…

Bees declared extinct 30 years ago take to UK skies again – thanks to farmers


A species of bee declared extinct in the UK almost 30 years ago is flying again – thanks in part to the efforts of farmers. Researchers have been restoring the short-haired bumblebee to Romney Marsh and Dungeness over the past three years, and the results are starting to come in.

Nikki Gammans and her team have travelled to Sweden each year since 2012 to collect around 100 queen bees, transport them back to Britain and, after a two week quarantine period, release them into the flower-rich countryside of Kent.

Read more…

Six Reasons Why Good Ventilation is Essential for Greenhouses


At its most basic level, a greenhouse absorbs sunlight inside the structure, making for warmer growing conditions than those outside. A greenhouse can provide the permaculture gardener with another type of growing environment on their plot, to compliment the natural climatic condition ns and the microclimates they have created. It can help to start new seedling, giving them protection from the elements during their fragile juvenile stages.

A greenhouse can also serve to extend the growing season of plants, giving them a ‘head start’ on spring, before they are planted out. Gardeners can also use the greenhouse conditions to grow species that require warmer conditions than those their plot provides outside (although these are unlikely to be native species so care must be taken to avoid cross-pollination).

Read more…

Once A Year, Farmers Go Back To Picking Corn By Hand — For Fun


Frank Hennenfent is a typical Illinois farmer. At this time of year, he spends countless hours in an air-conditioned, GPS-equipped combine – an enormous machine that can harvest as many as 12 rows of corn at a time.

But in late September, Hennenfent was going back to the basics. He was a top competitor at the 34th annual Illinois State Corn Husking Competition.

Read more…

Veganic is the New Permaculture Part 2


The film shows the wonderful way we can replicate nature growing organically through the use of mainly wood chips. There is a whole detailed process, but the basics of the system is that once we implement such system comprised of mainly, different sizes of wood chips and after several years of tending to the garden, if properly done of course, the garden can maintain itself and not much work, like crop rotation or watering or fertilizing etc. is needed.

Read more at…

Now appearing: Hemp, for the first time in decades


A handful of farmers are set to plant the country’s first hemp crop in decades, despite federal regulations that tightly restrict the plant’s cultivation.

Proponents of industrial hemp say it’s one of the most misunderstood plants in the world. It’s related to its far more controversial cousin, marijuana, but lacks the THC that gives marijuana its psychedelic properties. Hemp is grown for its fibers, seeds and oils all over the world, but has been a controlled substance in the U.S. for decades.

Read more at…

Six Properties of Soil


The soil is the bedrock of your permaculture site. When the soil changes with time, the plants also adapt to those changes. However, having the knowledge about the structure of your soil will make your planting and soil treatment more effective. The properties of the soil is determined by the material that went into its original manufacture and sometimes agricultural and permaculture practices also have an impact.

These properties are interconnected with each other and changes in one impact the other. All are in an ever-evolving relationship with the plants that are growing in the soil. By understanding the properties, you can make sure that you are planting species that suit the soil conditions.

Read more…

Good planning maintains biodiversity on farms


Farming and native biodiversity are not mutually exclusive. Landscape planning is one approach that lets the two land uses coexist, explains Sue McIntyre.

The 20th century saw a wealth of innovations in agriculture that allowed increased food and fibre production, and with it prosperity. But our society is now realising that the fertilisers, pesticides, machinery and non-native pastures that brought these benefits have produced a corresponding problem for native biodiversity. And that raises the question: What are we going to do about minimising environmental harm? Indeed, what circumstances allow the twin objectives of productivity for human uses and nature conservation to be met?

Read more…

Creating a Sustainable Lifestyle at Regenerative Leadership Institute

You transform your yard from a boring, unimaginative expanse of grass into a thriving organic garden overflowing with vegetables and fruits to feed your body and soul. You learn how to work with the earth’s resources to reduce your own impact. You free yourself from the chains of fossil-fueled drudgery. Does this sound like an impossible dream? It’s not! It’s the goal of Regenerative Leadership Institute.

Regenerative Leadership Institute courses teach you how to do and be all you desire. These classes show you how to turn your respect for nature into a sustainable life. This idea of sustainable living and working with natural resources is the heart of the science of permaculture. Regenerative Leadership Institute is the premier educator of permaculture living. Their goal is to instruct individuals how to create a sustainable lifestyle for themselves and eventually their community.

Regenerative Leadership Institute – Sustainable Living Education

Sustainable living education seeks to move an individual from a natural resources user to one who seeks to reduce their consumption. Learning how to feed yourself organically, build extremely energy efficient buildings, reduce and re-utilize waste, and how to become a part of the rhythm and flow of nature is the goal of Regenerative Leadership Institute. In courses taught by Regenerative Leadership Institute you’ll meet like-minded individuals who share your passion for creating sustainable living environments.

Real Experiential Education in Community Building

Regenerative Leadership Institute courses aren’t just stuffy, classroom experiences. These are hands-on classes where doing is a major part of the learning. The ultimate learning experience comes through the seat of a bicycle. Regenerative Leadership Institute sponsors several long-distance bicycle tours that teach you how to leave behind fossil-fueled transportation. These sustainable living tours are geared for beginner and intermediate cyclists. This is an intensive week filled with a wide array of experiences. You’ll learn how to transport yourself long distances, building muscles, confidence and self-reliance at the same time. You’ll tour organic farms and communities that not only preach sustainable living, they practice it. You’ll fuel your body with incredibly tasty and healthy food and by week’s end you’ll have a completely new passion for developing sustainable living communities.

Join us at Regenerative Leadership Institute and Change Your Life

If your desire is to improve your life, improve your environment and deepen your relationship with the natural world, Regenerative Leadership Institute is ready to help you. Learning and practicing the art of sustainable living in daily life is something everyone needs. Our ancestors understood the necessity of working with nature. It’s time we did too.

Regenerative Leadership Institute – About a Sustainability School

Regenerative Leadership Institute is a permaculture school geared at reconnecting people with nature and their surroundings. We are not necessarily a ‘class’ based school because most of our learning programs are featured outdoors. Additionally, our school is for all whereby, there are no age limits. Our goal is to reunite people with the community and help them learn how to create balance between their livelihood as well as that of others and nature. A lot in life calls for preservation and sustenance. This is the only way to ensure continuity in humanity and the ecosystem. Regenerative Leadership Institute is a school teaching about upholding and defending the natural balance of life.

If you have taken a peek at Regenerative Leadership Institute reviews, I’m sure you have noted that we are open to all students interested in joining our school. Our programs are based on open discussions thus, a sundry group provides for a debate that is broad and healthy. We are therefore, not limited to any particular group of people. Conversely, we hope to draw in as many students as possible, so we can all help generate a world that each and every person can flourish in. The programs available at Regenerative Leadership Institute, the nation’s leadership, sustainable living and permaculture school, include;

  • Permaculture design and regenerative leadership – This is a certification program that covers a broad spectrum of subjects relating to nature and sustainability. The course is aimed at personal sustenance, understanding and maintaining the ecosystem and building the community at large. Some of the lessons entail food forests, trees and garden design, useful plants and herbs, graywater considerations and system design, among others. A lot of Regenerative Leadership Institute reviews have highlighted the great benefits of this course. Students learn how to interconnect with nature and draw from it. There is a renewing in their way of doing things after this course. They apply what they learn from nature into other aspects of their life.
  • Sustainability in motion bicycle expedition – This is an experimental tour course created mainly for novice bikers. It is a week-long program with lessons mainly rooted in everyday experiences. Regenerative Leadership Institute reviews this as one of the most hands-on courses. Students not only get to learn about organic farming and communities living ecological lifestyles, but they get to visit these places.
  • Sustainability across America bicycle tour – This program entails about 4200 miles of biking over a 30-day period. Regenerative Leadership Institute students travel as a sustainable community and learn while also teaching about sustainability. This tour is very educational and enlightening because of the amount of time students will spend together.

A lot of research goes into the tours that we organize at our school. We ensure that all our students are safe and secure. We have training instructors that are well trained in different fields, to ensure that no one is left out or isolated. We will assist you with what you need to bring, how to pack all your gear to fit and provide meals as well as accommodation. Regenerative Leadership Institute reviews a lot of what students discuss and the views they share. This is how we are able to teach you how to live ecologically and cohesively with your environment, and with one another.

If you are looking for a school that is community based, reunites people with nature and their inherent being and then reestablish this with others, Regenerative Leadership Institute is it. We are here to help you connect up with nature. So far we have had a large number of students who have enjoyed the programs. They have also undergone a transformation that created a whole new realization of how much nature has to offer. Here is just one of the many Regenerative Leadership Institute reviews that we have received from past students.

Regenerative Leadership Institute in a Nutshell


Regenerative Leadership Institute is the nation’s leadership, sustainable living and permaculture school. We reconnect people with nature – remembering our collective heritage, creating a beautiful thriving future, rooted in community and sustainability. Join us in creating an incredible world where everyone can truly thrive.