3. Earth Care

direct link to this page: http://bit.ly/EarthCareEN

Permaculture started as "Permanent Agriculture" & although very soon we realised that an ecological food system cannot work longer-term inside an exploitative economy or an un-just society (we need to design systems that integrate it all), the bio/ecological aspect of permaculture keeps being of central importance, even as we realise.    

Not only because there are great design lessons in all natural systems (it's advisable to study them in great depth), nor because it's the historical origin of Permaculture (and its most develop facet), but also because it's a level on which we can act most easily, changing our economy in an immediate form, & where we most easily learn the lessons of nature &, on the way, also of connexion and self-esteem.  

This module consists of 10 classes or chapters:

You can see the subjects covered in each class in the programme of the slide show at the top on the first page of each chapter.     

Some of the additional materials available in this manual for each chapter are detailed here in the menu to the right >>>

Below are some more general introductory materials for this chapter.

Free Conference

Restoring Vital EcoSystems, the Most Important Challenge

            Many 'natural disasters' are actually created by the ignorance of human interventions in the environment.   In this conference we look directly at the urgency of the consequences of this, to the great effectiveness of permaculture systems for repairing the damage, and we pay particular attention to learning to understand our place in Nature. 
We suggest watching these great videos before the online conference

How to Repair the World

Willie Smits: How we re-grew a rainforest

Bibliography for Module 3

Permaculture, a Designers Manual, Bill Mollison

Dirt - The Erosion of Civilisations, by David Montgomery

The Permaculture Home Garden, by Linda Woodrow 

A British Trio of Permaculture Projects

Faith in a Seed: The Dispersion of Seeds and Other Late Natural History Writings , Henry D. Thoreau

A collection of the natural history studies that Thoreau was working on at the time of his death. Among his most thoughtful, this book is full of unique and interesting observations on seed dispersal and other seed-related processes. Thoreau's ideas on natural history - taken from his keen observational skills and unique way of seeing—were elegant, profound and far ahead of his time.

Shattering: Food, Politics, and the Loss of Genetic Diversity , Fowler and Mooney

A fascinating account of the politics and mechanisms supporting genetic erosion of our food plants. Discusses weaknesses of cold storage for genetic conservation (i.e., 'seed banks') as opposed to 'living seed banks' such as Seed Savers Exchange. University of Arizona Press.

Tree Crops: A Permanent Agriculture , J. Russell Smith

A classic of sustainable agriculture first written in 1929. Smith passionately talks about damage from modern agriculture taking place even in the 1920's (writing two decades before J.I. Rodale... probably an inspiration for Rodale as well as Bill Mollison and many others). Smith describes viable, visionary alternatives for a mixed agriculture based on high-yielding, low-care tree crops. An interesting perspective, much information not available elsewhere, and intriguing seed breeding project ideas.

Creating a Forest Garden: perennial crops for a changing climate, Martin Crawford

Video Lectures

here for a series of 38 lectures by by Will Hooker on permaculture
courtesy of Permaculture Media Blog (PMB)

(would be great if someone could please make descriptions of each video so we can slot them in the various chapters?)

EcoFarming article (march2011)

A Farm for the Future

A classic documentary about the sustainability of our food

Contents of these 10 Chapters:

"You cannot teach anyone 
to be a philosopher, 

but you can teach anyone 

to be a gardener, 

& from a gardener 

naturally grows 

a philosopher".