Can permaculture feed Australia?

Discussion in 'The big picture' started by Warm Earth, Sep 5, 2008.

  1. Grahame

    Grahame Senior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    It's a long thread so someone may have mentioned this already, but...

    Another question might be 'Can current practices feed Australia?' and more to the point 'For how long!?'

    Seriously, what choice do we have? If something is unsustainable, it's unsustainable. If something is sustainable then that has got to be the option we take or it will be forced upon us more violently than if we move down that path voluntarily.

    My interpretation of permaculture isn't about folks growing all their needs in their own bedroom, it is about setting up sustainable systems that work together to create a holistic system of sustainability. And if that means we have to do away with inefficient buildings and living spaces then I guess that's what we'll have to do :D . Evolve to a better system
     
  2. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Ah milifestyle what I put up with for a laugh. Thanks for that.

    A simple fact that many do not realise:

    For a family to achieve social, economic and agricultural sustainability in pre-oil times, they needed about 25, fully irrigated, crops acres each year. That average figure comes from a study of pre-oil agriculture in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. 25 crop acres is not a bad starting point for this debate. All the best with the knitting.
     
  3. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    What, if i may ask is your occupation ?
     
  4. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Self employed: commercial horticulture. 30 yrs Vegetables / Agricultural consultancy, both systems and equipment design and construction. Some lecturing. Concurrent. Currently developing a large tree crops trial: seeking high energy dense food production that has the lowest input requirement.
     
  5. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Given your occupation and apparent negativity toward permaculture, do you in some way feel threatened by the Permaculture and Organic movement around the world ?
     
  6. Michaelangelica

    Michaelangelica Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    There were probably 2 million or more Australian aboriginals in Australia before white settlement
    They tended to follow the succession of fruiting plants especially along the coast and to use fire to 'weed" fruiting trees and provide pasture for kangaroos.
    We seem to be having trouble, with all our dams and technology, to get enough water for 20 million people.

    There were probably over 100 million Amerindians in N & S America before 1491
    A larger population than Europe with an extensive forest agriculture, botanic gardens and plant breeding programs (Maya in particular had developed many corn varieties and over 200 varieties of chilli.)
    They had developed "forest agriculture' to a fine art.
     
  7. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Puzzling, please elaborate.
     
  8. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    God
    Caught out yet again
    I don't think anyone REALLY knows how many people lived her before Cook and Phillip
    Just as the Amerinadian number is a guestimate. Although I think its figure are probably correct, as there are archaeological, landscape modification, and linguistic clues that support this.

    How many Aboriginal people?
    They were not into building Cities on Hilltops.
    Why bother when everyone was your brother and the land and you were one?
    it is estimated that they spent 4 hours a day getting food and shelter. The rest of the time developing a deep earth/land based spirituality akin to Buddhism
    Half their luck.!
    Pick a number between 1-4 million ALL have been mentioned, but how would we know?

    https://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/r ... 1/art00005

    https://www3.interscience.wiley.com/jour ... 1&SRETRY=0

    https://scholar.google.com.au/scholar?hl ... wport&pg=1

    (These links don't really support any of my assertions. they are there to look impressive)
     
  9. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    I don't think i'll bother... your position on permaculture seems as passionate as my belief in zero tolerance to herbicides and other chenicals...

    However, i will say...

    "...Those who say it can not be done, will not interupt those who are doing it..."
     
  10. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Yes, very weird
    I have reported this to the site owners. It is not the first time it has happened.
    I don't know why this is happening.
    Unless I have a specially-intelligent, Chinese Spammer who I have offended
    Pleas report it to Murray, as I will too

    OK Buddhism was a stretch. I agree with what you are saying . Much more sensitive and aware, than this what blundering bear has to say :bear: .of little brain

    Sometimes I feel a deep connection with the earth, going down thousands of kilometres and out thousands of kilometres. I sometimes know intuitively what is 'true' and 'right' about the planet.
    I wonder if this is what aborigines feel?
    There may be an aboriginal gene or two in my Celtic ancestry
     
  11. ho-hum

    ho-hum New Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    This subject/question needs to be explored.

    I am only just at home and cannot invest time now. It is Christmas Eve.

    Merry Christmas to all, I sincerely hope that Christmas can bridge family divides, cause reconciliation and grow the family spirit. For want of a better date it is a nice time for many across the globe to be nice to each other. [Maybe it is because Xtians are nicer to those around them.]

    cheers and nice times..

    ho-hum
     
  12. trimnut2

    trimnut2 Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Michaelangelica in your posting you have kept my name as the poster on your reply.
    Can that be changed to your name and my initial query assigned to me? Thanks.

    Logically enough no one really knows how many indigenous inhabitants this country had before the European invasion. Certainly the aboriginals had a most remarkable culture. The most remarkable oral tradition that has evolved on earth. The largest song collection of any culture. A remarkable sensibility built around land. A profound integration to landscape and all it's life forms. We are paying for our ignorance of our indigenous culture.

    I prefer not to describe the indigenous religious sensibility as similar to Buddhism. For me the religious sensibility like so much of the indigenous culture is very different from any other one. Describing indigenous culture and religion in familiar terms tends to reinforce the idea that we should be able to simply understand each other's culture. An attitude that inevitably creates alienation when genuine difference becomes apparent. There can be little doubt the alienation, perhaps created by our vanity in assuming that we can understand, is as much a symbol of our own cultural ignorance of ourselves as it is of our ignorance of the profundity of the indigenous culture.

    I tried to track down your links but did not get too far. Do you have easy (UNI) access?

    That's sad, I bothered to reply to your query. I am pleased to see that you claim to be "doing it". As I have said all along show me a apartment that is self-sufficient and I will happily believe you.

    May I guess this to be your other point? I have a passionate (unfavourable) view of PC. That is not my view.

    There is much in PC that is correct. There is much in organic ag that is important. Unfortunately both the practice and the outcomes for both these regimes in Australia is usually woeful. I am asking why? My hope is that somewhere someone has built a viable operation using these values in horticulture. I want to find it. If I cannot find a viable example, shouldn't I ask why not? Is the belief in the intellectual content of PC more important than building viable operations? Should we accept a belief in PC as being more important than feeding people? My belief is that viability will always be the determinate in successful farming. It is viable, successful farms that feed this country not ideology or belief.

    Just before "milifestyle" concludes that all my thoughts are the result of swallowing 200 litres of Roundup perhaps I should say a little about our farming practices. We mix crop. We produce about 2500 tonnes of compost a year. Last year we produced 600 tonnes of biochar. We use few artificial fertilisers. We have not used a spray boom for pesticides in four years. Does that mean that I wouldn't use a artificial fertiliser or a pesticide? If a crop was to fail which threatened our viabilty I would use the appropriate control measure.

    I pose this related question to "milifestyle" if your health was threatened would you maintain you zero tolerance in the case of medications? If not why not?

    Happy Christmas to all.
     
  13. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Here's a link with some information... https://www.pathtofreedom.com/ (not the one i was thinking of)

    The pictures i have been trying to find are of an apartment with balcony that is wall to wall "green". 90% sure it was in calafornia. I'll keep looking, as time permits.

    Apologies, i just felt that vibe...

    Trying to implement Organic and PC approaches in the same "Broad acre" setting within the same time frame as traditional agriculture is what i consider to be the biggest problem. I think if it where possible, many traditional farmers would try to reduce the size of the pod, increase the size of the Pea and double the acerage. This simply can't work. There needs to be conversion practices used so your viability can be maintained while reducing the scale of traditional agriculture and increasing the output in the PC/Organic area.

    I wasn't comparing your glyphosate use to mine. I was just saying your posts appear to be heading in the direction that permaculture is doomed for failure. And that our passion for both areas appeared similar (yet opposite).

    Its refrshing to read your Organic approaches.

    If i needed to chemically treat a crop to ensure its survival (and our viability, I'd let the crop fail. We have set ourselves up so that we do not rely on one stream of income. That in our opinion is where "desperation" enters the picture. A large majority rely on the survival of one crop to ensure an income and use desperate measures to ensure it s survival.

    If any crop looks like its gonna fail, i would call it green manure. Nothing really fails, espcially in PC, its use simply changes.

    Reactive medication is the result of failing to take a pro-active approach to health (IMO, and many others i believe). If we are not exposed to toxins etc, our chance of needing Reactive medicating is reduced.

    Thats not to say we don't need or use medication.

    We use medication when and as required - we can be toxin free in our own environment, but we can't control the environment around us. We don't smoke or consume alcohol, never have done drugs etc. All in all, we are pretty healthy.

    Would i stop my daughter taking her Epilepsy medication ? I'm Organic... not stupid!

    And a happy Christmas to you mate.
     
  14. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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  15. MamboLife

    MamboLife Junior Member

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    Re: Can permaculture feed Australia?

    Goodness, how big is this family? Can you elaborate on why so much land is needed? This is a sincere question, I gather you are taking into account fodder crops, grazing, orchards, etc. What would be growing on the land?
     

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