Category Archives: Agriculture

The Square of Cultivation.

Way of Water: Waterways – Neighborly Rays

What is a watershed?

A watershed is the area of land where all of the water that is under it or drains off of it goes into the same place. John Wesley Powell, scientist geographer, put it best when he said that a watershed is:

“that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all living things are inextricably linked by their common water course and where, as humans settled, simple logic demanded that they become part of a community.”

Watersheds come in all shapes and sizes. They cross county, state, and national boundaries. …

via the US Environmental Protection Agency

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On Divestment: Investire – Time for a Change of Clothing

I begin by giving thanks to the Source; to ecology & economy educators and to Divestment Movement activists, all of whom helped inspire and inform this post. Like all things, please, take this with a grain of salt; this is merely my own perspective, but I hope I may share a helpful one.

This Friday (02/13/2015) is ‘Global Divestment Day’ when groups of people and large institutions are teaming up to make a commitment to shift investments away from volatile fossil fuel companies and toward more prudent companies. I encourage folks to check out this movement, and if you are interested, show support moving the movement in your locale.

Broadening the scope and I think rightfully the audience and impact of the Global Divestment Day spirit: I encourage people to think of divestment beyond only a movement away from fossil fuels. Divestment, and specifically the unified hopefully-high-impact Global Divestment Day, is an invitation to march away from that which we hate: injustice in the environmental, social, and corporate-governmental (ESG) sectors. Simultaneously it is an invitation to move toward that which we love: low-risk, high-return, responsibility in the ESG sectors, and greater yet may we support those who innovate and regenerate those sectors to become better.
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Connection to Place – Knowing Natural Neighbors

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Hopefully for adults there are 10+ native creatures one knows by name, but even then the disparity between connection to our own creations (i.e. corporations and industry) versus connection to Nature’s creations (i.e. our non-human fauna and flora neighbors) is leaving us out of tune with the environment we work with, in, and from.

Consider this: in seeking good life for our children, we must be very familiar and caring about them. We must support them with both mercy and severity necessary for lessons to sink in from high to low, and for growth to occur from small to great. It is of great benefit to also be familiar with our neighbors and community; our surroundings in general are important as many psychologists et al. would recognize the local environment’s role in one’s development. So it is, analogously, with our creations versus our Natural neighbors. Thing is, the way our species is in general now, we are couch surfing carrying our children, and we are becoming less connected and caring with our hosts. This is a poor path, but our hosts appear generous. On that note, we still have a chance. So long as life is with you it is not too late to connect with the Life-Force of Nature. Make the movement move.

Appalachian Agrobiodiversity; One’s Gift & Connecting to Place

Appalachia may be one of the poorest regions of the U.S., but when it comes to heirloom crops, it’s got the riches.

Says an NPR article called “On The Trail To Preserve Appalachia’s Bounty Of Heirloom Crops” that describes the bounty of agrobiodiversity existing in the midst of financial scarcity. It is gems like these that offer hope in restoring balance: The current financial-capital intensive economy does not support the life of Appalachia (and in many ways leads to exploitation of it), but finding and working with the forms of capital a region is rich in, such as living capital in Appalachia, reveals windows of opportunity for life to thrive. Continue reading →

A Lesson On Adaptation: Invasive Plant Treating Invasive Disease

During a talk on adaptation at a permaculture gathering (this video @ time 03:38 – 04:12), a speaker pointed out that as climate changes, ticks carrying Lyme disease are coming deeper into the Northeast USA, as are non-native invasives such as Japanese Knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum). Both of these new things are taken as problems, popping up more than ever in places disturbed by humans, and the conventional treatments for them are high-doses of synthetic anti-biotics and herbicide spraying and cutting respectively (both of which I’ve experienced as very unpleasant, and not guaranteed effective, for everything except maybe chemists and their sales).

The speaker at this gathering pointed out that as inhabitants of Earth we too must adapt, and if we try to rather than wage war on our enemies, then we may find a much easier way to go about things – it turns out Japanese Knotweed, which is popping up imperialistically and quickly regenerating itself, has many medicinal uses including as food treatment for Lyme disease (which, however you treat it, calls for a sustained healthful diet and accompanying gut flora/immune system).

For more information on Japanese Knotweed as a treatment for Lyme disease, see:
http://www.hawthornehillherbs.com/node/148

Networking – I give thanks

A friend of mine explained why the goat and the cow he owns does not live in his backyard and in doing so, shared with me a valuable lesson: for herd animals, such as cows (or humans), it is stressful to be isolated and wellness necessitates some degree of community. Since then the lesson has grown on me. I’ve grown to better recognize the place of the hermit-personality and of the community in one’s life. This post shares a little bit about the role and value of community in my life.
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