Login



Peak Oil is You


Donate Bitcoins ;-) or Paypal :-)


A Farm for the Future

A forum to either submit your own review of a book, video or audio interview, or to post reviews by others.

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Sixstrings » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 18:36:40

careinke wrote:"Large Scale commercial permaculture" is an oxymoron.


Then how do we feed 7 billion people? Commercial farming is very old you know, we're talking thousands of years that crops have raised as a business, the food sold to those who do other work in the society besides farming.
User avatar
Sixstrings
Master
Master
 
Posts: 8603
Joined: Tue 08 Jul 2008, 02:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 18:50:54

Here's the best example I can immediately think of for a "farm scale" permaculture endeavor, about 100 acres:

http://www.krameterhof.at/en/index.php? ... ermakultur

I'm not sure what the criteria for "large scale commercial" might be, by today's standards, possibly 1000s of acres? I know there's at least one landowner planning such a thing, but it is only in the planning stages at this point (theoretical).
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 18:58:51

Sixstrings wrote:Then how do we feed 7 billion people?



Excellent question. :)

Personally, I think it will take a variety of methods plus an interest in reducing population to sustainable levels through family planning and natural attrition.

7 billion people are probably not sustainable by any method of food-growing, though some extreme optimists think the current population could be sustained by permaculture or Biointensive or similar methods if there were redistribution of land. Personally, I am not such an optimist.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby PrestonSturges » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 20:49:00

There is an effort now to develop perennial grains, FWIW
User avatar
PrestonSturges
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4746
Joined: Wed 15 Oct 2008, 02:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 20:55:40

PrestonSturges wrote:There is an effort now to develop perennial grains, FWIW



That effort has been ongoing for awhile. See the work of Wes Jackson and the Land Institute.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Narz » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 21:21:35

careinke wrote:
Narz wrote:
careinke wrote:"Large Scale commercial permaculture" is an oxymoron.

Why?


I thought Ludi explained it rather well. What part didn't you understand?

I was asking you. Permaculture is a new word & means different things to different people.

Ludi wrote:I'm not convinced "why" is a reasonable question

Why is always a reasonable question as long as it's asking genuinely.

Ludi wrote:if a logical consequence is that a large-scale portion of humanity will not be fed with permaculture techniques. "What else" might be a better question, as in, what other methods should we employ in addition to permaculture to feed the large-scale portion of humanity which will not be fed with permaculture.

I still don't see why permaculture inherently cannot be made large scale.

If one man/woman can manage a food forest of a few acres why can't 100 people manage a food forest of a few hundred acres? I mean sure it would take some organization but what worthwhile endeavor doesn't?

It's nice to see some acknowledgment though that permaculture is best supplemented with other techniques.
“Seek simplicity but distrust it”
User avatar
Narz
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 2326
Joined: Sat 25 Nov 2006, 03:00:00
Location: the belly of the beast (New Jersey)

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby mos6507 » Fri 28 Jan 2011, 23:08:09

Narz wrote:If one man/woman can manage a food forest of a few acres why can't 100 people manage a food forest of a few hundred acres? I mean sure it would take some organization but what worthwhile endeavor doesn't?


I'm sure it could, if there was enough buy-in on the concept AND long-term commitments. That's where things always seem to get derailed--the human element. When I see what goes on here at the micro level in the suburbs with new McMansionistas moving in and tearing up raspberries on the border to put in arbor vitae screens, it makes it hard for me to conceive of true long-term earth stewardship with chestnuts and other trees that take decades to mature. Permaculture really requires more of a conservationist mindset. You're not conserving what's there (outside of zone 5), you're going to build something new and then conserve what you build. There's already some of that mentality with old orchards and vinyards that have been passed down for generations. That's kind of what everybody would have to think about their land, that it is like a fragile heirloom, not that the land is just a commodity to sell off to real estate speculators.
User avatar
mos6507
Master
Master
 
Posts: 9505
Joined: Fri 03 Aug 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Boston Suburbs

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby SilentRunning » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 01:59:57

I'm sure it could, if there was enough buy-in on the concept AND long-term commitments. That's where things always seem to get derailed--the human element. When I see what goes on here at the micro level in the suburbs with new McMansionistas moving in and tearing up raspberries on the border to put in arbor vitae screens, it makes it hard for me to conceive of true long-term earth stewardship with chestnuts and other trees that take decades to mature. Permaculture really requires more of a conservationist mindset. You're not conserving what's there (outside of zone 5), you're going to build something new and then conserve what you build. There's already some of that mentality with old orchards and vinyards that have been passed down for generations. That's kind of what everybody would have to think about their land, that it is like a fragile heirloom, not that the land is just a commodity to sell off to real estate speculators.


I've been having a good time with my daughter going over my land and planning what to plant and where. We are going to be putting in an orchard in the spring. I have also been surveying our woodlands, and figuring out what to harvest in order to encourage long term sustainable maple sugar production as well as a revitalized old growth forest. It gives me a good feeling that I am starting something that will very likely benefit my children and future generations - and that both my kids are interested in seeing it succeed.
Send more Cornicopians!
The last ones were delicious!!! :-)
User avatar
SilentRunning
Tar Sands
Tar Sands
 
Posts: 113
Joined: Fri 27 Mar 2009, 22:46:50
Location: Northeastern North America

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 09:46:44

Narz wrote:I still don't see why permaculture inherently cannot be made large scale.

If one man/woman can manage a food forest of a few acres why can't 100 people manage a food forest of a few hundred acres?


Sure it could, as part of a community endeavor, with the problems mentioned by mos. But 100 people on a few hundred acres isn't a "large scale commercial" endeavor by today's standards in which farms measure in the 1000s of acres farmed by a couple guys on giant tractors.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Homesteader » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:05:02

Not being a tecno-cornucopian, about the only way I can see that it would be possible for people to take a significant amount of CO2 out of the atmosphere is to stop cutting trees and start reforesting areas that were once forested. In order for these areas to still produce food the way kill both birds with the same stone is the permaculture/food forest route.

Of course the effort would have to be massive.

Of course it will never happen.

<---working on his own little food forest.
"The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays, is coming to a close. In its place we are entering a period of consequences…"
Sir Winston Churchill

Beliefs are what people fall back on when the facts make them uncomfortable.
User avatar
Homesteader
Light Sweet Crude
Light Sweet Crude
 
Posts: 1857
Joined: Thu 12 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Economic Nomad

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:10:53

I think it would pay permies and doubters to have a close look at agriculture in parts of Asia, Latin America, Africa and old Europe. Places where it has always been normal to eat locally in season.
Here in the Philippines 98% of my food comes from the valleys around where I live and the same goes for everyone else around here (almost). It is possible to have a much more balanced urban/ agricultural/ wild lands system on a much more localised platform and it is already happening in some places without having to be construed to the enth degree; but out of necessity, practicality and affordability. Living in the shadow of Pinatubo I can see new rainforest growing in many places which were previously rock. I can see everyday people are getting smarter in provincial Asia. Doing things better, being frugal but creative. One of the first traps to get out of and perhaps the hardest is the obsession with $$$.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5859
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:12:05

Homesteader wrote:Of course it will never happen.



That's the thing. Solutions which are not implemented aren't much help.

When people learn about permaculture often the first thing they'll ask is "Can it feed 7 billion people?" and when given the honest answer "probably not" they blow it off and that's the end of their interest and involvement. :( A smaller number of people are so attracted to the concepts they immediately start to implement them in their own household.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:16:52

SeaGypsy wrote:it is already happening in some places without having to be construed to the enth degree; but out of necessity, practicality and affordability.


Yep, but some people seem to have to "construe to the enth degree" as you say. :roll:
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:21:51

I know one aged gentleman who lives from a 4 square meter garden and a rotational sprout system, spends about $10 a week on inputs. According to him the reason to depopulate is to leave something for nature; despite the fact we could easily feed 60 billion people if that is all we wanted to do.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5859
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:26:08

SeaGypsy wrote: According to him the reason to depopulate is to leave something for nature; despite the fact we could easily feed 60 billion people if that is all we wanted to do.


One of the principles of permaculture is to return the majority of land to wild nature. To do so in many places requires lowering the population through birth control and attrition.

Reference: "Permaculture: a designers manual" by Bill Mollison

We actually don't know how much of the Earth's biomass can be turned into humans and the Earth's life systems continue to function. Living as we presently do, the waste sinks are overloaded with 7 billion and life systems are shutting down.
Last edited by Ludi on Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:31:30, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:29:48

Why is it that in "The Land of The Free and Home of the Brave" people need to be threatened with FEMA concentration camps before being ordered to do what comes naturally? Weird country.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5859
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:32:46

SeaGypsy wrote:Why is it that in "The Land of The Free and Home of the Brave" people need to be threatened with FEMA concentration camps before being ordered to do what comes naturally? Weird country.


We Americans are a herd animal. We only like to do what the neighbors are doing, and only if the neighbors aren't "weird."

Moo.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 10:39:54

Moo 8O
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5859
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby scas » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 11:05:07

Why not eat insects? They can be farmed cheaply and are probably the highest EROEI form of protein available. It's likely that they will thrive in a hot-house world, and can easily be turned into some form of dry biscuit.

http://www.ted.com/talks/marcel_dicke_w ... sects.html

People here have doubts as to the ability for industrial nations to radically overhaul their food supply upon realization of an impending famine. Personally, i'm slightly more optimistic, but scientists need to sound the call.
scas
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 486
Joined: Tue 02 Nov 2010, 05:39:52

Re: A Farm for the Future

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 29 Jan 2011, 11:56:18

dupe
Last edited by Ludi on Sat 29 Jan 2011, 12:02:19, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Ludi
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 18590
Joined: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: Darkest Dumfukistan

PreviousNext

Return to Book/Media Reviews

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: GHung and 7 guests