Paul continues the smackdown with most of the usual suspects (Kyle, Opalyn, Katie) to finish up 20 of the 40 remaining pages in Sepp Holzer’s Desert or Paradise.
“The creation of various microclimates is an important principle in Holzer’s permaculture. This gives plants a chance to grow and thrive in areas which they otherwise could not. This makes a greatly biodiverse garden possible, enabling the growing of great variety of vegetables, herbs and fruit. Sensitive plants need frost protection, so here are some ideas (cue happy Paul noises). Avoid morning sun – it is the coldest just before sunrise, when sensitive plants are exposed to the first rays of sun, they can burst because ice within them expands in the process of melting. One example: when I put a jarful of water in the freezer, nothing happens. The water freezes. It’s only when I take the jar out and put it in the sun the jar will explode. I can avoid this by putting the jar in the fridge and the ice will melt slowly and the jar will not explode.” Well, that sounds like a fun experiment.
“The same is true for the flowers on a plant – if the frost is allowed to melt slowly, out of the sun, the plants will hardly be damaged, so grow sensitive plants on the west side of your house, or protect them by planting taller plants in front of them. Create water retention spaces – the water moderates extremes in temperature. During the day, water warms up and heat is subsequently released at night. Overall humidity is also increased and this benefits plant growth. Incorporate rocks and stones in the landscape – they store heat during the day and release it at night. Place frost sensitive plants between rocks, and you’ll find that they’ll be much better protected.” This works better with larger rocks, as they have more mass to store heat in. Katie asks if it’s better to put the rocks on top of mulch or to half-bury them. Paul thinks putting them on mulch has no apparent value, but believes that the surface/half-buried question is worth digging into, whilst currently being biased towards “surface”.
Dr. Hugh Gill Kultur
Eivind W. Bjørkavåg
Suleiman, Karrie, and Sasquatch
Jocelyn Campbell Chris Sugg
G Cooper Dominic Crolius
havokeachday Penny McLoughlin
Julia Winter, world's slowest mosaic artist
Polly Jayne Smyth
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177 hours of video: the Permaculture Design Course and Appropriate Technology Course