by Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
(NaturalNews) Modern industrial agriculture is a disastrous failure, as it defies practically every natural law related to food cultivation, ecological and environmental protection and stewardship, and human nutrition. But there is a new agricultural revolution sweeping the land that is changing the way humans eat and grow food, and its methods are derived from the concepts found in permaculture.
Permaculture is basically an all-encompassing term used to identify the strategic and creative ways through which human structures and agricultural systems are unified into harmonious, sustainable entities. As opposed to factory farming systems, which rely heavily on chemical and fertilizer inputs and destroy the environment and human health in the process, permaculture farming systems take advantage of the many unique ways that natural systems work together to complement one another and sustain life.
With food costs on the rise and the economy increasingly on the brink of collapse, more and more people are turning to the self-sustaining methods of food production found in permaculture that will persist in the event of a regional or national crisis. So NaturalNewshas put together a list of ways you can begin growing your own fruits and vegetables at home in ways that draw from permaculture growing concepts.
The Mandala Garden
If you have a fairly sizable growing area, you may want to consider creating a mandala garden. This unique setup utilizes moveable chicken “tractors” that can be rotated around for the purpose of naturally fertilizing and tilling soil, and creating an environment in which fruits and vegetables grow easily with minimal labor.
You can learn more about the mandala garden concept by visiting: http://www.small-farm-permaculture-and-sustainable-living.com
Vertical, indoor farming
A surprising number of herbs, greens, nuts, and even grains can be grown indoors with a little creative thinking and conscious placement of growing containers around windows that get lots of natural sunlight. And even if sunlight is limited, special growing lights can also be used to grow food indoors in otherwise dark areas. When stacked and tiered around these light sources, vertical, indoor farms can thrive.
Check out this VertiCrop design for an idea of how this might work for you on a smaller scale at home: http://www.verticrop.com/about.html
You can also learn more about indoor farming at: http://www.veganorganic.net
If land and suitable soil area is in limited supply, hydroponics is another self-sustaining growing option that relies on water and nutrients to grow food. Hydroponic systems work well in urban settings where physical space, and even natural sunlight, is in short supply. Hydroponic systems can be stacked in small spaces, which allows for maximized growing capacity in a small amount of space.
You can learn more about hydroponics by visiting: http://www.aces.uiuc.edu/vista/html_pubs/hydro/hydroponic.html
Just like hydroponics, aquaponics is a method of growing food at home using water. But instead of just fruits and vegetables, aquaponics systems incorporate fish and other sea creatures into the mix as well. A hybrid of the two systems, aquaponics provides some city dwellers with adequate space the ability to produce their own fish for meat, and even sell it to generate revenue.
You can learn more about aquaponics by visiting: http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/ http://www.urbanaquaponics.com/
Sources for this article include: