What Is Permaculture? Ethical Basis And Role In Sustainable Agriculture

As you browse newspapers these days, you will likely find that their desperation is growing in the face of the effects of climate change and environmental degradation. However, countless communities are making incredible efforts to bring the wave of environmental responsibility back to life. Permaculture is a system of teaching the principles of permanent culture to those interested in the environment and those who want to thrive in such an environment.

What is Permaculture?

Initially, permaculture included agriculture and permanent but has evolved into a more inclusive field, combining permanent and culture. This concept was pioneered by Australians Bill Mollison and David Holmgren in 1978. According to Molson, it is unclear and somewhat difficult to define what a federal code should really be about.

Permaculture is a set of tools for creating communities that work in harmony with the natural world and work with nature, not against it. For example, It creates communities that can adapt to climate change while improving the health of the land and those involved. It helps grow food.

In his book Chronicle to promise, General Nagger summarizes these ideas: “Permaculture is about remembrance of more meaningful relationships between people and the systems that support us through this approach and result in higher food production.”

The Ethical Basis of Permaculture

The principle of equitable distribution is based on the fact that the land belongs to all of us, and we all share land that has everything – food, energy, money, and time. Consequently, surplus resources must be shared with those in need or return to the land.

It is these three ethics that together provide a flexible framework on which permaculture practitioners can build and transform their local systems. These ethical principles ensure that permaculture practitioners can apply a variety of transformation techniques that can be applied in it.

The Permaculture Institute has conducted research in conjunction with the Purple Care Fund, which provides an outstanding example of how natural systems feed each other, producing both abundant food for farmers and a healthier ecosystem. Using the principles of permaculture to revitalize relationships with local communities and the environment is also a key part of projects like City Repair, which apply the ideals of permaculture to artistic and eco-friendly activities.

By providing tangible and ethically grounded solutions for systemic change, it has become more important than ever as it offers solutions that go beyond sustainability and provide sustainability to not only survive but thrive in a changing natural world.

The principles of permaculture are removing people’s dependence on consumer-centered lifestyles by replacing them with a more sustainable approach. We can create a lifestyle that respects wildlife, nature, and local communities. We can appreciate our support and our pursuit of interpersonal relationships more fully when we embrace this new worldview.

How It All Started?

Permaculture concept’s creator David Holmgren shared his insights on the origins of permaculture in the 1970s. At the time, Holmgren and Bill Mollison co-developed the Permaculture technique in 1978.

He said: “Sometimes there are two stories that tell how the idea of ​​permaculture actually came about. One story is that Mollison was my scientific advisor and I was just a technical assistant working with him. And then there is the opposite of what is; I was a brilliant student and he was an academic who stole my work from me. Neither of those is true. I mean, to begin with; he was my mentor while I was working on the permaculture manuscript. ”

He further said that “If it had been left to me the Permaculture manuscript would have just molded away in a draw. It was Bill who was like, no we’re going to take this to the world. The core of the idea of permaculture really came about when I was coming towards the end of my first year in Environmental Design and my interests were gravitating around ecology, agriculture and landscape design”.

Origin and The Concept of Ownership of Land

While sharing the whole journey about permaculture he said:

One of the speakers at the seminar about ownership and control of land said very interesting things. Despite having the opportunity to handle the rabbit problem in Australia, rabbit trappers did not do so due to their lack of incentive because they didn’t benefit from better soil. So, they raised rabbits on farmland as beneficial pests for profit. ”

Initially, he explained that land ownership is essential to creating sustainable productive agriculture. We can create permanent cultures and permanent agriculture for incredible benefits. Eventually, it became permaculture.

Ultimately, it is a system that persists over time, supporting a person. Its roots go back to two Latin words: “permanens,” meaning persistence in time, and “culture,” meaning action that preserves life.

Role of Permaculture to Boost Sustainable Agriculture

We made the mistake of treating food and agriculture as two different things, that is, food is a tool for solving problems. Agriculture is one of the ways to solve them. Food makes us happy, but agriculture creates problems for us.

Agriculture is critical to all aspects of health and livelihoods because these three factors affect us as much as we do them. Here we have applied methods that support the earth, water, and air.

It is a permanent land cultivation method that collects rainwater, does not require heavy machinery to plow the land, and grows crops seasonally while growing different crops at the same time.

It is imperative that we protect our environment, including air, water, and earth, and permaculture can help achieve this.

Principle Feature of Permaculture

Its rooting principles are what make it so effective:

  1. Conserving space

In small areas you can produce large amounts of produce, so you can save some space for other activities.

  1. Conserving biodiversity and wildlife

Rather than set itself up against nature, permaculture works in tandem with it and is inspired by nature. Through this collaboration and action, it benefits from the diversity of nature.

  1. Preserving Earth’s Resources

Using renewable sources of energy (solar, wind) and saving natural resources (such as water) are the main ways to achieve this goal.

  1. Less effort and energy required

It advocates keeping soils natural by not cultivating them or tilling them. Tilling and cultivating the soil can be detrimental to underground insect populations, which can destroy the soil’s biological system and enhance disease.

  1. Organically grown produce

A permaculture gardener can even sacrifice produce to pests as an alternative to using chemical pesticides. Natural pest management is recommended as it allows nature to self-regulate, so there is never a need for chemical pesticides or insecticides.

  1. Promoting health

The organic produce that permaculture produces is good for health, but it is also good for individuals’ mental health since it allows them to spend more time with their loved ones and their children.

An Exemplary Application of Permaculture in Mountains

To understand the concept of permaculture in sustainable agriculture we have consulted a farm manager to share his experience with us. While sharing his experience he said:

“This whole place is a mountain, when you walk around this place you will realize that there is no soil at a depth of 4 to 5 inches, only stones. The slope here is almost 40 degrees, but the trees and bushes are still growing so strong that they have to be cut down.

We have never plowed the land with a tractor, a destroyer of nature. We usually do this by letting water seep into the ground. This method is known as rainwater harvesting. In all villages in India, Iran, and Sri Lanka, artificial lakes are used for harvesting.

This farm is all hilly, if you dig a little deeper, after 4-6 inches the soil is gone. The total depth of the earth is equal to the length of my arm. This place has turned green because rainwater can seep into it. In addition, to save water, we dug wells to create ponds that can store rainwater for 1-2 years and can stand on their own.

However, there are 3 rules that water must first seep underground, slowing down the flow of water. Let the water drain and then seep underground. If the flow rate of water is high, it does not seep inside, such water tears off the top fertile soil layer and causes erosion.

When the water slows down, it will spread and seep through small holes and cracks, it fills the aquifers underground, and the next time more and more water will seep into it. Also, rainwater wastewater flows in several directions due to the slope of the mountain water going in all directions, but we designed the trenches so that all the water flows in.

This is the 5th year since the adoption of permaculture. This year we had the 5th rain. If it rains continuously for 3-4 hours, this large trench fills to the brim and water stays in it for about a month. The last monsoon water remained in this trench for 20-22 days; this means there is more empty space under the ground for water to seep into. This is the result of 4 years, 4 years of patience, that plants began to grow on stones.”

Role of Gravitation Indicate Soil

It’s called Living Soil. In a handful of earth, there are more living organisms than people. These living organisms make the soil fertile. When we press hard on the soil, all organisms in it die. A soil without living organisms is like cement.

Therefore, do not burn anything on the farm. Every year after harvest such as wheat, cotton, etc., if you burn the residues, organisms living at a depth of 4-5 mm will die. Farmers burn the leftovers 3 times annually. After burning the residues, farmers pour water into it, thinking that it is potassium.

Then they plow with tractors. Deeper soil is introduced from above. Later, the farmers harvest on this soil and then repeat the same harvesting and plowing of the tractor.

After repeating this process 4-5 times, know that the foot of the earth has become like a brick. The ground would turn to brick the first time, but the pressure of the tractor breaks it. Now they are adding urea and other chemicals to make the soil fertile.

Another aspect of permaculture is the cultivation of several seasonal and local crops. Farmers say that about pests affecting crops. The solution to this problem is that plants such as marigolds are also called pest attractors. Instead of pesticides that attract plant pests, 80 to 90% of pests that attack staple crops such as cauliflower will switch to marigolds. You can also plant onions or garlic. Because these plants give off an unpleasant odor that destroys pests.

There are 6 elements in Permaculture:

  • Fertilize your garden with homemade fertilizer.
  • Make sure to conserve your water.
  • Seeds should be saved and stored yourself.
  • Nothing should be wasted.
  • Crop residue shouldn’t be burned.
  • Be open to suggestions from other experts.

Advantages of Permaculture Garden and Farms

Permaculture gardens aim to save everything. Nothing should be wasted:

  • Among the many plants used in a permaculture garden are some designated for food consumption, others for medication, others to attract beneficial insects, and still others to deter pests. A permaculture garden is a great way to enjoy the abundant benefits of nature like medicinal plants, wild edible flowers, and so on. All this can be found in a permaculture oasis.
  • It is entirely self-sufficient once established, and once watered and harvested, the garden needs no additional care. It require only occasional mulching and require no other maintenance.
  • Many permaculture gardens recycle rainwater from gutters to fill water containers, to keep soil and plants hydrated, and attract wildlife. They also use water to attract wildlife.
  • Permaculture gardens do not have pests because water sources attract insects, birds, frogs, and other small creatures that consume pests in the garden.
  • Using garden waste makes compost, which can be used as fertilizer and soil amendment.
  • In addition, companion plantings are helpful in keeping insects and other pests away.

There are no places on Earth to grow money. The Earth is a place to grow food and live.

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