Sunday, June 14, 2009

Permaculture Principles

No-dig, weed-free gardening?!  Hmmm...Birchwood Motel has 2 cottage gardens, 5 vegetable and fruit beds, 3 raspberry hedgerows and various fruiting and flowering shrubs, hedges and trees. Sign us up for some of that!

this much I know, nitrogen-rich clover is a friend to man and bee!

The savvy are long hip to the benefits of permaculture. For the rest of us, catching up won't be so hard thanks to the NewForest Institute in Brooks. NewForest is an educational non-profit with a mission of connecting people to the land by creating mutually sustaining relationships using permaculture design principles. 

NewForest came on my radar last week when they launched PermaFeast! with a  screening of the Sepp Holzer (the granddaddy of Permaculture) film series "Farming with Nature". PermaFeast! is a six-week series of hands-on workshops demonstrating the principals of permaculture and natural farming. When they asked for host sites for the series we were happy to volunteer. 

Birchwood Motel will host the first workshop "Secrets of Soil" on Wednesday, June 24 at 4:30pm. We'll learn through hands-on practical application no dig, weed-free gardening, sheet mulching, compost building and compost tea brewing. The cost will be $20 for the workshop. If you're interested in the whole series, the cost is $100 for all six workshops. Advance registration is required; please call Newforest at 722-3625.

Here's the series schedule: 
June 24: The Secrets of Soil; July 1: Water in the Landscape Ponds, flowforms, swales, aquaculture; July 8: Stone Age Economics Wild food foraging, perennial vegetables, and native medicinals; July 15: Manna from Heaven Hand-built, wood-fired cob ovens; July 22: Feathered, Flying and Fat Friends Backyard chickens, ducks, bees and pigs; July 29: Playing on the Edge Natural playgrounds and wild spaces.

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