Permaculture and Agroforesty:
The principles in Practice at TERRA
TERRA is about creating flourishing regenerative landscapes, both social and ecological.
The permaculture ethics of Care for the land, Care for the people and Fair Share guide our every process as we create resilient, closed loop systems that satisfy our need for wholesome, fresh, organic and locally-produced food.
TERRA is actively creating a new social ecology around the production and distribution of quality food.
No-dig vegetable beds
We could have ploughed our beds with a tractor and planted straight into them within a few hours...
Out of respect for the complex microbiology that makes up most of the goodness present in our living soil, we chose not to dig.
Rather, we heavily sheet mulched the grass with cardboard, straw or hay, to prevent the grass from growing through, and then added generous quantities of good compost on top - ready to be planted straight into: no compaction, no fossil fuels and some very happy plants!
Between rows of fruit trees we put vegetables. Between rows of vegetables we planted fruit bushes, herbs and flowers.
We added some animals to the mix: bees, horses, dogs, humans ...
And now we are close to creating an edible landscape that has the diversity, resilience and balance of a natural forest....
Prevention is always better than treatment, right?
In agriculture, we use prevention by companion planting, applying compost teas and increasing biodiversity.
At TERRA, we have taken into account beneficial relations between different vegetables and have used these to our advantage. Whether it's chives under our fruit trees, marigolds by our salads or celery next to our potatotes, we're making sure plants are part of a community rather than rows and rows of monocultured sameness!
Closed Loop Systems
We prune our trees and weed our beds.
We then make compost.
Then we add the compost to the beds and grow vegetables.
We feed our veggie scraps to the worms and make vermicompost.
Sometimes we might even feed a worm or two to our chickens,
they then provide us with wonderful manure which we use in our compost which eventually goes back to our beds where we grow our veggies.....you get the idea, right?