Chris DeBoer

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since Feb 10, 2015
Boulder, CO
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Recent posts by Chris DeBoer

Hey Sonny!

I have planted some apples on my father's property which has a creek that forks and then merges back together a few hundred meters downstream creating what we call "the island"... We are in a semi-arid region of the Colorado Rocky Mountains and during spring snow melt I think the water table rises a bit but I dug 4 feet down and didn't hit water so decided to just go for planting the trees.

I agree with Eric in that as the roots hit the top of the water table they will likely grow more horizontally (I think pines generally grow this way).

I just planted a second pair rare varieties from an orchard restoration project in southwest colorado.
2 years ago
I'm inclined to agree with you that the intangible rewards are working are working least for what they were designed for. And maybe messing around with it would be a bad idea, especially where the forum is in its development.

And yet it is my opinion that the reward system is just limited...perhaps for good reason. Interesting questions to me are, if we tried it and it failed, what would the negative impacts on the community be? Are those worth risking given the opportunities provided by other potential benefits?

Michael Cox wrote:I'm going to ask "Why?"

Well, really it was just an idea. And I do understand it would be rather demanding to integrate it. I don't know enough about how to design the code for such systems to know how simple or complex they can be.

I guess really it was just something I thought to put out there to see if the community would find it valuable. Granted enough value would need to warrant the workload for any one individual.

For example let's take the PERMIES coin

- It might make the apples, thumbs up and other incentive structures more attractive if they were redeemable for something of value...say a discount for the rocket mass heater videos or w/e Paul deems appropriate

- the community could express the value they receive from particular posts
- members of the forum could place bounties for possible solutions or sources for problems
- coins given for bringing in a new member to the forums, connecting someone for a podcast and such
- Maybe there are things to come in the Ant Village where a means of exchange other than say work for trade/work for food and this money can only be spent within Paul's Laboratory/Ant Village community and thus keeping the "wealth" in the community.

There are probably countless spinoffs to this. But again, this kind of thing takes a lot of care and attention to designing, and ultimately, crypto coins, and even the things they can be redeemed for, are not to be mistaken for the inherent value in permaculture projects themselves.

Anyways, maybe your right....more headache than its worth. Or maybe like I said, something to shelve for the future....maybe not.

Kelly Smith wrote:
knowing what i know now - i wonder if there should have been some sort of interview process.

a suggestion I think made by Diana Leaf Christiansen on one of Paul's podcasts a while back.

R Hasting wrote:
So one thought is that some of the people that wanted to experiment at the labs were willing to uproot because they had already burned their bridges, or were not socially or intellectually capable of actually performing, and so they didn't really make it in the real world to begin with.

A possible, and if correct, astute observation R Hasting

Paul, usually this is the point where I'd ask if your open to feedback after having listened to the last few episodes....

I have lots of thoughts and opinions but not having been there and experienced it I really don't think theres much I can say.
What I will say is that, take some time for yourself, purge the poison, remind yourself why your doing this.

Much of our culture has lost a sort of robust vitality in the way of social capital. Having become disconnected from a sense of community (for most people) and lacking rites of passage that renewed social compacts and reverence of elders. We have to relearn this way. There are simply not enough of these communities for everyone to join one, although this is how it has been sustained for the last few decades. (back to the land etc.)Those bold enough and with the leadership qualities will have to start them.

You have visited and lived in many intentional communities, perhaps trusting in the experiment of starting your own brand, forgiving yourself for your mistakes, forgiving others for theirs, and taking a new step at a time.

I commend you, Jocelyn and everybody "noble" for contributing to this project and sharing your lessons learned. I do indeed reflect on them.

I think Mollison said something like "The only ethical decision is to take responsibility for your life, your children and the generations to come."

Burra Maluca wrote:Like this? - PERMIES coin

Nice! should searched crypto currency in the forums first

seeing as it was posted last year it didn't seem to integrate well into the forums....thats why it could be interesting to write it in from the backend

Not sure how familiar the premies community is with Bitcoin or crypto currency but a surprising number of parallels are in both worlds. Just a shout out to Paul, since your a techie, I thought creating an altcoin that is just used in the premies forum for people to "tip" posts.

I realize you just got done sort of purging the malfunctioning parts of your fiefdom and are working on building out the ant village model......but I do think this sort of element could be really valuable to the premies forum.

Take a look at the way Let's Talk Bitcoin website did it.

Could be pretty easy to incorporate it with the existing rewards system.

Again, i know you're probably hesitant to take on more projects......maybe shelve it for a while.

FYI you can create your own tokens fairly easily on some rather new companies and nascent technology on bit coins block chain.....check out Counterparty



Thanks for the links...I put another post about my site and conditions in this forum

I'm definitely looking into phytoremediation with some halophytic species (ideally native to Western U.S.)

Questions to All:

If I choose species that are salt-accumulators and then either A) compost them and spread it back out or B) use them as animal forage

how does this affect the nutrient cycle of minerals in the salt?

I read one academic report that had success with this and thought acidic compounds had a chelating affect on the Na+ ions and was able to separate the other various metals and thus making them available to microbes to then feed the plants. This increased the biomass of a variety of (rice?) they were measuring.

Should I leach water through the compost and risk losing the humus and other nutrients?
What happens when they are ingested by a ruminant? Does it just come out in their manure and go right back to the surface or get broken down by the anaerobic organisms in their tummy?

Thanks any suggestions on other ways to gather the accumulated salts would help too!
3 years ago

I've been poking around some more on the internet on this issue. I while back a read a study out of Montana State University about using saltbush to mine the salt out of the soils.

Special glands on the leaves accumulate the salts and then burst, if caught or collected somehow, this could be a cheap and chemical free way to desalinate the soil.
Saltbush can also be used as animal fodder but I don't know enough about how animals might metabolize these mineral salts to know if it will just come out the back end.

My only issue is, if these salts DO contain valuable minerals then collecting them might also result in mineral deficiencies, an expense I'll take on by putting them back from some other source.

Does anyone know how mineral salts can be best incorporated back into the nutrient cycle without affecting the soil?

The best I can come up with is cycling them through animals or microbes while trying to cover the soil, improve water infiltration and adding organic matter so that when they do make it back to the field they aren't left at the surface by evaporating water. Sounds like a strategy worth trying but might take a couple years to see the be it.
3 years ago

This is very interesting indeed!

I was considering some way to encase the seed balls in ice so that when the spring weather melts the ice the moisture breaks the clay and the seed germinates....

perhaps a seed-snowball?

maybe some good ideas but practicality also has to be considered and simply broadcasting on top of a late winter snow might be the way to go...

Also, on reading the article its suggesting bare soil works best for seed to soil contact...since a lot of permaculture farms won't be wanting to expose bare soil (weed pressure etc.) Maybe, as the article points out, cattle tromping around can help seed to soil contact. In fact, using cattle to gently work seed balls into the ground sounds interesting... seed balls aren't likely to fall into the cracks in the soil from heaving though

I think there definitely could be a proper sequence of these techniques for my situation and climate. Great stuff!
3 years ago
Hey permies!

So I know this is an old thread but Paul recently linked to it in his daily'ish email and I had a few "Ah Ha" moments I thought were worth posting...

Towards the end, as they are discussing how to deal with the negativity and ick, Kelly mentioned something I thought quite profound in comparing these trollish people to weeds we didn't necessarily invite into our permaculture garden.

I've always found important lessons in nature and part of my philosophy/outlook on life is finding how to draw meaning from observations in the natural world. (no wonder I resonate so well with permaculture!)

Seeing as weeds are often a symptom of underlying causes, be they mineral deficiencies, bare soil, invasive rhizomatic spreaders etc., remediating soil conditions and improving fertility goes a long ways towards building a better situation.

So while laying down a mulch barrier helps, there's a reason we have zones of decreasing activity and interaction...and if everyone walled themselves off in secluded ecovillages, at least in the present state of affairs, the planet might not have enough biodiversity to recuperate for eons. Most people, at least most permies, don't do that....we have permaculture business, permaculture conferences, permaculture design courses etc. We are all interdependent and we do interact with the outside world.

This makes a cute metaphor what? How does this inform us about actually building a better world?

Well, besides carefully considering the invisible structures (essential in this context), in fact I would argue that, in many ways, the metaphor is the answer. By that I mean, by using permaculture as a design methodology, we are creating a better world.

So, carefully observing how people new to permaculture interact, learning how to meet them where they're at in understanding, and encouraging future participation...we spread more than just the food we grow (or whatever tangible thing you might be selling/trading/giving)...we are spreading even nurturing ideas, inspiration, meaningfulness.

The weeds, eventually, just won't have a cultural context to germinate and invade....they'll still crop up every now and then but our systems, with thoughtful interaction, will keep things in check and balance them the mean time guys....we have SO much work to do!

With perennial seeds of love and abundance....onward we grow!