Permaculture Design

Permaculture is a sustainable system that can help save our natural resources. It started in the 1970's and is spreading over the globe.

We live on this Earth and there is not an endless supply of natural resources. Water, soil, trees, nutrients and more are being used up over time. People can not survive without good water to drink and soil that is alive. There is so much to be learned about our environment. Permaculture is a self sustaining ecosystem that can help save energy, food and natural resources.

Permaculture is simply "ňúpermanent agriculture'. A man named Bill Mollison started the permaculture idea in the 1970's. He knew that everything and everyone is connected. Bill Mollison realized the need for sustainable eco-systems and came up with permaculture. Bill Mollison comes from Australia. Many people all over the world are using the permaculture system today. It is spreading throughout the globe. There are even many design courses that are offered in various places and you can receive a certification in permaculture.

The big things to learn in permaculture are the three R's. Reduce, reuse, and recycle. These are on the top of the list in any sustainable system. Remember to use them in your everyday life, in that order of importance.

Recycling is on the rise across the world. Paper, glass, plastic, iron, aluminum and more are being recycled every day. Work toward zero waste. Buy products that use recycled materials. Reduce what you buy and use. Figure out ways to reuse an item instead of just quickly throwing it away. You can find the recycled label on paper and cardboard products. If it happens not to have the label you can tell if it is recycled if the inside of the paper is gray and not white.

Try growing food, vegetables, herbs, and fruit. Even a small apartment balcony can hold containers that are able to grow vegetables and herbs. Small citrus trees can be grown in containers. Hang pots of vegetables from the top of your patio or balcony or front porch. Almost any home or place can have a garden of some size and content.

Try to avoid products that come from other places. It takes an enormous amount of money and energy to import materials. Use locally grown foods instead.

Repair things that break if at all possible. We have become a quick throw away society. Don't throw things away so quickly. If you don't want it, give it to a thrift store or salvation army. Even if something is broke, they can still sometimes sell it to another person. Someone else may be looking for a part off of the item or are able to fix it. Always consider giving it to someone else first. You may not have a use for it, but someone else might. Make a mosaic out of that old chipped or broken dish. Use that old pot as a planter.

Buy a rotary blade mower without an engine. Little ways like not using your lawnmower can save a lot of energy when you multiply that by everyone who owns and runs a lawnmower. The carbon dioxide levels in our ozone layer can be reduced.

If possible buy a more gas efficient automobile. If you can lower the miles you travel, then do it.

Walk when you can, instead of driving.

Use labor and skill more often instead of machines and technology. Use everything to it's full potential and use. Give scraps to animals or put them in a compost pile for use in the garden. Throw old bread out for the birds. Use old recycled lumber instead of new or instead of burning it right away. Mulch with those leaves instead of bagging them for the trash man to pick up. It just goes into the landfill when it could be giving back needed nutrients to the soil. Soil is alive, dirt is dead. We want to have soil.

A permaculture garden can serve many functions. It can produce fruit, vegetables, herbs, flowers and more. Money can be made from growing a permaculture garden. You can have a nursery, do seed production, give classes on organic gardening, show others your permaculture design, etc.

A permaculture garden can be like the old kitchen potager which is right outside the kitchen door. It can be a place to go and relax and relieve stress. Learn to conserve water in your permaculture garden. Use crop rotation tips. Use natural means of insect control. These are all part of the permaculture system.

Learn to save seeds of vegetables etc. Don't waste anything. Store seeds in a cool, dry place. Use an airtight container such as a covered jar and keep in your refrigerator. Seeds of many varieties are becoming extinct just as other things are. Seed banks are doing a great job of saving rare and true seeds for our future.

Harvest rainwater. When the rain goes into the rivers and flows out into the ocean it is no longer usable for us. Set up a catchment system on your house roof by using gutters. Have this water that you catch go into a tank and use it for outside watering. If you buy a UV system, you can use it for household purposes, even drinking.

Design your home for passive solar heating and cooling. Learn ways to store heat. Build your home using sustainable products or recycled lumber. Plant trees around the home to shade it in the summer heat. Have energy efficient windows and think about cross ventilation. Find out which appliances you can buy that use the least amount of energy.

Avoid debt. Start a home based lifestyle. Ride a bike. Walk. Plant trees. Read and learn about sustainable systems and products. Speak up about your beliefs. Act! Spread the word about permaculture systems. Protect the forests. Keep water from becoming the world's rarest mineral. Water is life. Maintain diversity. Having diverse vegetation keeps the insects from getting out of control. You want a variety of insect, good bugs to eat the bad bugs. Everything has a purpose. Use natural, organic products instead of chemicals. Let things function in a natural way.

There is so much to learn about permaculture. Live on the permaculture principles. Even changing one thing is a start.

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