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Another effort from last week. Now we have half the lower garden in! With the help of our trusty massey-furgeson tractor driven by our vey own John Black and wonderful strong wwoofers,  we managed to move the soil for a heap more beds this time.

I noticed my internal debate about using the diesel, and the appreciation for the resource still being available. My thinking went along the lines of – if  only we had used oil for activities that brought about food security or social gain instead of churning out crappy plastic commodities that just get thrown in the landfill, and developed our cellulose and hemp based products  then… oil may not have peaked. If we  had used our resources wisely.

Other philosophical thoughts went through my mind as well, about a concept I have  heard around permaculture that  says, ” nature doesn’t produce straight lines” –  and ” create more edge”  which I have seen translated into some very beautiful, and path intensive mandala gardens ( I do think they are neat looking) , which from a food growing perspective look like they have lots more path than growing area, and a lot of edge to maintain. After many years of large scale growing for the community I appreciate certain things about long straight beds- ease of planting and harvesting, ease with wheel barrows, hoeing, ability to use netting and frost cloth on hoops, ability to use hoops and netting for chicken tractors, thinning carrots, frames for beans and tomatoes,  other community members finding the food!. So while I was working I was pondering ” does nature really not produce straight lines?” And I looked around, well there were the cabbage trees and ponga ferns with long slim straight trunks, the middle stem of the ponga frond leaf , the leaves of the cabbage tree, blades of grass, bamboo, trunks of pines, the stem of most leaves… there were plenty of lines, not straight like a ruler but certainly straight in their pattern. So what I observed was that nature does use straight lines, when the function is appropriate!

Don’t get me wrong I like curvy beds too, and curvy things in general, but I think the pattern needs to fit with the functions, and of course there is no right way of doing it!

So tomorrow we will have new seeds sown on the bare areas of land, sow our meadow of rejuvenating, beneficial insect and wild flowers, and hopefully plant the first food in the new garden!

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About livingpermaculture

Permaculturist, educator

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