Triage Permaculture: Healing the Land

Sustainability is not enough. We need regenerative approaches to taking on the challenges facing humanity and all life on earth. As with all of the permaculture principles, regenerative design thinking can be applied to every aspect of modern human existence. Bringing land back to health is just one example.

On Kaitiaki Farm we have been bringing a worn-out horse property back to health for the last three years. For the most part the results have been incredible so far. This area was mostly bare soil with a light covering of thistles three years ago. Now it has a complete blanket of grass and not a thistle in sight.

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On the slope just below it we’ve planted manuka and poplars.

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Below that we planted tagasaste.

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And further down there are now olives and then avocados.

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And finally – at the bottom of the valley – we’ve fenced the stream and planted 1,500 native trees, shrubs and grasses.

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Elsewhere on the farm we’re also seeing great recovery. The slope below suffered a major slip during the floods of 2015. We have worked hard to protect and restore the hillside since then.

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All of this planting means lots of propagation. Here are 4 trays of tagasaste grown from seed.

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Additionally we buy in and have donated hundreds of native plants.

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On this farm we’re taking the long view. Investing in erosion control, soil health, and water management now will pay dividends in the future. I call this “triage permaculture.” Vegetable gardens can come later.

 

Peace, Estwing

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