Robin Kyle

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since Jan 09, 2015
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Recent posts by Robin Kyle

Full disclosure, Im listening to this but I also wrote and sang it. This song is called An Open Letter to Animals on Permaculture Farms, and is performed by my band Valet.
Hope you enjoy!
1 year ago
This is an interesting topic to me also. As far as I'm aware any glass will block the UV B rays which is the wavelength that reacts with the cholesterol on our skin to create that very important hormone Vitamin D. Regular glass will not block UV A light though which actually decreases Vitamin D production. Using polycarbonate will block all UV light and I wonder if that is healthier for the plants than having the UV wavelengths split? Seems there are always correlations between our bodies and the rest of nature.....?
1 year ago
I would love some advice on what incubator to purchase to hatch between 10-15 duck eggs this spring. There doesn't seem to be a thread about incubators on permits. Im sure some of us have plans for homemade incubators and some can tell us why we shouldn't even attempt that, heck Im sure someone could tell me why I shouldn't even hatch my own. Id love to hear all of those opinions please.
1 year ago
I am in MN so pretty cold. We have Anconas 4 layers and a really nice guy named Charles. Im pretty sure your egg laying issue is a breed issue. Pekins as you know are terrible foragers and layers, they are as you suggested the cornish cross of the duck world!
         For water I have 2 different set ups. One is a black concrete mixing tub available at any hardware store. Its about 2 by 1 feet and 6 inches deep. It is sunk into a wood chip hole in a sunny spot in the yard with a window I found propped up on the southside. This does freeze every night but I usually just scrape off the film in the morning unless it was cold enough to freeze the whole thing. Then i take the giant ice cube and set it on a garden bed to melt in spring (my kids did recently ask if we could build an igloo with them, which could make a nice duck house!). I like to make sure it has fresh water once a week if it gets warm enough and they get a nice bath. When the temps get down to zero and below I just use the metal bowl that is in their house. I use an infrared heat lamp in their house and it gives enough heat to slow the freezing of the water and to make them comfortable even at 26 below last week.They also have a regular LED bulb in the house that is on for a couple hours every evening to keep the eggs coming. I do have to take their bowl inside at least three times a day when it is that cold to clean it out and get fresh water or if Im lazy I just boil a kettle and pour that in the bowl when I bring them food.
         For feed I give them spent brewery grains from a microbrewery in my neighborhood. This is non gmo barley and or rye that has been soaked in water to extract most of the carbs and sugars and so by volume has more protein and fiber which I think is healthier for them. They get all our veggie and meat scraps but I do have to chop or blend them as unlike chickens they can't peck stuff apart. They get kelp and egg shells free choice. They also get a small amount of organic feed, and worms and even in winter never stop foraging. They also do eat/drink snow. The eggs are definitely bigger and tastier in the summer but they still lay very consistently all winter except when molting.
                    
1 year ago
I give this DVD 7 out of 10 acorns , but really I hate to make a judgement based on what I was hoping for. I was hoping it would be more instructional and have more shots and better angles of each stage in the process. Having said that I still learnt a lot and was not bothered by the arrows on Willy Smits or other attempts at humor, The music was quite good too. Wish there was a better explanation about why Pauls idea to vent underground in the tipi worked.
1 year ago
Joseph Lofthouse wrote:

I was a research scientist trained in a rigorous science (chemistry) . The laws of chemistry and physics are the same everywhere and every-time. With that bias I am skeptical of claims that permaculture is a science... Industrial agriculture qualifies as a science in my mind, because soil samples are taken to a lab, and absorption spectrometry is done on the samples, and so many pounds of boron, or other elements are added to the fields... I don't see that happening in permaculture.


Not all the laws of physics and chemistry are the same everywhere and everytime. The speed of light for example is varies in different locations and different times, for some reason scientists have just decided to take an average from some readings and haven't bothered to question why it can vary so much. Science tends to do its observing in what it calls a controlled study which mostly means how does something react in this particular lab environment. Permaculture practices observation in the actual environment of the observed. Since i live outside of a lab environment observations made outside of that environment are more useful to me. Weather or not this observation and assessment process is considered scientific or not doesn't really matter to me.
2 years ago
Permaculture is the radical idea that humans are also nature. if we live from that understanding our interactions with the rest of nature will be beneficial, and when our environment heals we do too.
2 years ago
I recently watched Paul's interview on the summit with Nathan Crane and in it he said raised gardens will give you and extra two weeks at both ends of the growing season. I understand that in spring the raised bed thaws quicker but I would think that in fall the raised bed would also freeze quicker. Can someone explain why I don't understand this? Thanks
2 years ago
Debra I would love to see your outline for the class, I have been thinking about how to teach a class on permaculture at my boys school, it is a very small school and all I would need to do would be to offer to do it and it would happen, the kids currently have 2 aquaponics systems and start seeds for the school fundraiser plant sale so they are ahead of the curve but teaching the basics and principles of permaculture in a way that makes sense to their lives is something I really want to do. I have zero experience in teaching outside of doing so am really looking for a lesson plan that I could edit for my particular situation. I would also love to collaborate with teachers who understand permaculture to create some learning materials for 5-12 year olds. Matt Powers has created a program that I understand is for high schoolers but that is not applicable for me yet.
2 years ago
Hi Evan

I believe that treating natural remedies with the same viewpoint as pharmaceuticals does not give you a very high rate of success. Treating symptoms without dealing with the root cause can improve life in the short term but with not heal the whole. When using pharmaceuticals there will almost certainly be other problems down the road, when using natural cures their effectiveness can wear off in time. I believe what science is now starting to discover, that the root cause for a lot of allergies is a lack of balance and amount of good bacteria in our bodies and particularly in our gut. Never before have human beings been in so much daily contact with a myriad of low level toxins that kill bacteria and brain cells, never before have we eaten a diet so devoid of life.
I think every bodies cure is site specific (permaculture thumbs up!). You should make sure you are eating lots of live foods, fermented and raw vegetables, raw milk and stinky cheeses, raw honey kombucha, cider vinegar, are some of the best. You should look into really powerful pro-biotics, from really reputable company's like Get Real Nutrition (all the products grown on a permaculture farm btw). Look into mushrooms for immune support ( Fungi Perfecti, is another company practicing permaculture). By all means try nettle and other recommended herbs to see if they offer immediate relief, pay attention to your body and how it reacts to things ( use the feedback loop!). We have been conditioned by our culture of separation to think that we need to ask someone else how to fix our bodies even though we are the ones inhabiting them.
For what it's worth since it is by no means a controlled study my family of 5 suffers from zero allergies, my children are the only kids in their class at school to be allergy free and they have never suffered from ear infections, they have been drinking raw milk and Kombucha since they were born and eat kimchee and dirt on the regular.
I really hope you find the answer you are looking for so you can enjoy a life around nature.
2 years ago