The best permaculture walnut guild, and how to produce more food from a smaller area

A plant guild is a community of plants that grows well together. Synthesizing these conditions involves mimicking how plants grow in natural ecosystems. In forests, savannas, and prairies, some plants grow well together and influence each other positively, and some don't. When they don't have a beneficial impact on each other, plants can be either neutral or harmful to each other. But that's … [Read more...]

Mulching fruit trees and shrubs for higher and better quality yields

What is mulch and mulching? Mulch is a layer of material applied to the top of the area of soil. Mulch is, usually, used to converse moisture and improve the fertility and health of the soil. Some people also use mulching as a way to reduce weed growth as well as to enhance the visual appeal of the area. Mulch is usually but not exclusively organic in nature. It may be permanent (e.g. plastic … [Read more...]

Best nitrogen fixing tall trees for temperate climate

Nitrogen is one of the more essential plant nutrients. Without sufficient nitrogen level in the soil, plants’ growth will be extremely slow. That's why the best pioneer plants that are being used in permaculture design are nitrogen fixing plants. But just because a certain plant is a nitrogen fixing plant, it doesn't ensure that it fixes nitrogen efficiently. That is why I decided to create a list … [Read more...]

Sea water and sea salt as organic fertilizer that makes healthy plants grow fast

You might be surprised to hear it, but some people use seawater as a... fertilizer. I know you might think that's crazy, because seawater contains a lot of salt (sodium chloride). Well, that's true. But that's not the only ingredient! Seawater chemical composition. What elements and minerals are there in the seawater? Sea water contains many different elements. In fact, most of the naturally … [Read more...]

How to get the benefits from rock dust fertilizer without hauling tons of material

Sometime ago I was researching the topic “how to use different rock dusts (basalt rock dust, stone meal, granite rock dust, azomite rock dust, etc.) as fertilizers in agriculture.” Usually most of the research is clear – the more stuff you put in, the better the results are. 10 tons per acre/20 tons per hectare are often better than 1/10 of the dose, and even 20 tons per acre/40 per hectare are … [Read more...]

How to permanently improve your sandy soil

One of the problems a lot of people have is how to improve the fertility of sandy soil. One solution is to add more organic matter (compost, manure, wood chips), but unfortunately if you live in a hot and humid climate the stuff you put in the soil is going to decompose quickly, since microbial activity is so fast. That creates a serious problem, because your poor sandy soil is not holding … [Read more...]

Getting your soil right part 1: Cation Exchange Capacity and base saturation

I've already mentioned a few times that to produce healthy fruit, vegetables, cereals, animals and ultimately humans, soil need to be “balanced”. And by “balanced” I don't mean any esoteric term. I mean that minerals and plant nutrients need to be in the soil in certain quantity and they need to be balanced with each other. I don't know will you believe me, but the knowledge how to grow high … [Read more...]

Basalt rock dust as plant fertilizer

One of the most valuable soil amendments and organic fertilizers is volcanic rock dust. Granite rock dust is one example, basalt rock dust is another. Basalt rock dust as a source of natural nutrients for plants Basalt is an igneous rock. That means it wasn't processed or transformed by environment, so the plant nutrients in it, are just as they were when they came out of the center of the … [Read more...]

Mycorrhizal fungi are greedy capitalist pigs!

If you know something about permaculture, then probably you heard that mycorrhizal fungus: live in symbiotic relationship with plants help plants to extract nutrients from the soil promote more abundant yields improved resistance to soil pathogens and environmental stress It comes with a price as fungus does not do it because it have "a good heart", but because it gets carbohydrates from the … [Read more...]