James Driscoll

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since Oct 31, 2011
UK Zone 8a <br/> (53.81°N, 1.55° W )
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Recent posts by James Driscoll

A number suffix would be useful too for some idea of power output.
Solar blah nW
4 years ago
This looks similar to the Jeavon's bio intensive method (http://www.growbiointensive.org/index.html). I'd like to have the space to give it a try but, to be honest, I'd like to get as many staples from perennials (I'm still looking a list of perennials that will compete with the likes of potato and maize for calorific content). The crop rotation and replanting every year sounds like work to me
4 years ago
Hugelkultur-swales-berms - I can see the logic in all of them in the summer season and at other times in the current climate. This same weird climate is about to send a months worth of rain on us in one day when the ground is already saturated with water. Is there a good solution to coping with a deluge of water without washing all your hard work away or passing a field worth of run off on to your neighbour to deal with in the same day they receive a months worth of rain? I'm particularly interested in solutions that fits a couple of acres (I know ponds and lakes come into the thinking but on this scale they too are likely to be overflowing). I realise that established trees will do a lot to keep some soil in place but we have to keep it there long enough in this crazy climate to establish them

Thanks for your thoughts.
5 years ago
Hi paulo, I'm struggling to see how you can manage this in such a small area but maybe I'm just jealous of your zone . Have you had any thoughts on what you would need in your zone 5 location ? Apart from a very large polytunnel... Does anyone have any data on expected yields for different USDA zones?
5 years ago

Ivan Mayes wrote: I look at places like http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/LifeTrac and think, there needs to be a place to do this for permaculture!


Has Paul already started one??
http://www.permies.com/wiki/index.php?n=Permaculture.Permaculture

Although I think it's a great idea I've never found wiki's to be the most tech friendly things for people to contribute to, it might be time consuming to get the entries organised - maybe Paul can comment on how long the wiki link has been on this site and how much enthusiasm it's received...
(again I'm conscious of the drift from the original post maybe this should be moved to a wiki thread...Sorry Collin but I blame you for writing such an interesting question )
5 years ago
Thanks, machua is certainly something new to me, struggling to find refs on the Internet so it might be new to others too! Yeh I appreciate if you only eat local crops the diet might be less interesting but surely the permaculture methods should increase diversity
5 years ago
Hi Aranya, looking forward to reading your book. I'd be interested in hearing your view on how much land you think someone in the UK (Yorkshire) would need to, say, get around 80-90% of their calories from it without significant imports, and any suggestions on high calorie staple crops suitable for north England greatly received, I live in the rhubarb triangle
5 years ago
It's entirely understandable you don't want to weigh and log your harvest Greg I appreciate it's a serious chore Still, logging how many calories you are buying in would give an insight.(or keeping a food diary for a week or two and knowing what came from your land). Norris Thomlinson has kindly offered to send me the software he used to log on the.2 acre plot. If I can stick a Web interface on the front of it I'll share with the community but it will still be time consuming to weigh and log harvests. I appreciate permaculture is more than the calories but I think high calorie yields are pretty important.
5 years ago

greg patrick wrote:So no, we aren't quite there, but we're moving there.


It stories like this greg that make me think this is the road I want to go down. I know it's a serious task to undertake but detailing a years harvest from this type of plot is the sort of thing that would expand on the fantastic work already undertaken by the .2acre project. Knowing what the inputs were and and what you got out would add so much to our knowledge. (and also add to your work load quite a bit too!). I'm not sure there is enough Sun where I am to have such a density of trees but if I spread that out over an acre.....
5 years ago
Just for info, there's a similar interesting comment from Martin Crawford around the 6 minute mark here,
http://permaculture.tv/martin-crawfords-food-forest-at-schumacher-college/

You don't use a forest garden (at least at my latitude) to obtain a staple carbohydrate crop. I'd still like some high carb perennial crops I can grow in an open space though. Sorry if this is starting to stray from the OP but I think obtaining high carb staple food in a 'permaculture environment' (whatever that means!) might be the same topic
5 years ago