[permaculture] No-till potatoes - surface cultivation and deep mulching

Scott Vlaun scott at moosepondarts.com
Tue Jun 26 16:35:56 EDT 2007


We've been growing our potatoes under straw for a few years with good  
results. We cover the entire plant when it is about 6 inches tall  
with a fairly dense covering but making sure to break up all the  
flakes completely. When the plants all shoot through the mulch 6 or 8  
inches we repeat. This has worked well to keep the CPBs at bay,  
pretty much eliminates hilling, watering and weeding,  and also makes  
for a lot less digging and cleaning at harvest time.

Good luck with it!


Scott Vlaun
Moose Pond Arts+Ecology
Design Solutions for a Sustainable Future

450 Main St. Studio 2
Norway, Maine 04270
207-739-2409 Studio
207-890-4099 Cell
http://www.moosepondarts.com



On Jun 26, 2007, at 2:35 PM, rafter t. sass wrote:

> This is a question about mulching technique for near-surface  
> cultivation of potatoes:
>
> We are currently growing potatoes with a fairly conventional no- 
> till trench-and-hill technique. We are not mulching, in part  
> because of a carbon bottleneck, wanting neither to pay $$$ for  
> straw or seed our beds with hay.
>
> I am growing a test plot (about 18 row feet) under shallow  
> cultivation. No trench, seed taters buried 4 inches, and mulching  
> with straw. My question about specific mulching technique: how  
> dense? How closely packed between plants? Should I lay down and  
> bury side shoots, or gather the plant into a central bundle and  
> mulch around it?
>
> If anyone has experience with this, I would greatly appreciate any  
> help!
>
>
>
>
>
>> From: permaculture-request at lists.ibiblio.org
>> Reply-To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
>> To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
>> Subject: permaculture Digest, Vol 53, Issue 46
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 12:00:27 -0400
>>
>> Send permaculture mailing list submissions to
>> 	permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
>>
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>> When replying, please edit your Subject line so it is more specific
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>>
>>
>> Today's Topics:
>>
>>    1. Re: BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress Votes to Outsource
>>       Presidency! (Kenneth Benway)
>>    2. Re: BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress Votes to Outsource
>>       Presidency! (Kenneth Benway)
>>    3. Re: BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress Votes to Outsource
>>       Presidency! (Lawrence F. London, Jr.)
>>    4. Permaculture Activist (John Wages)
>>    5. Re: Seedballs (Linda Shewan)
>>    6. the night of the living dead (Lawrence F. London, Jr.)
>>    7. Re: Seedballs (jedd)
>>    8. Re: Keith Johnson for President! (Keith Johnson)
>>    9. [Fwd: [SANET-MG] Growing Nonfood Products in Transgenic
>>       Plants a mild proposal] (Lawrence F. London, Jr.)
>>   10. Re: Pollies and permies (Keith Johnson)
>>
>>
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------- 
>> -
>>
>> Message: 1
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 06:11:05 -0400
>> From: "Kenneth Benway" <ken at arcadiandesign.org>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress
>> 	Votes to Outsource Presidency!
>> To: "'permaculture'" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <007a01c7b0c7$d195bba0$660aa8d2 at arcadian.local>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1250
>>
>> I just couldn't let this one get by without sharing it with the  
>> group. I
>> think that we can always us a good laugh, I know I can.
>> Ken
>>
>> Congress Votes to Outsource Presidency
>>
>> May 24th, 2007: Washington, DC (AP) -- Congress today announced  
>> that the
>> office of President of the United States of America will be  
>> outsourced
>> to India as of July 1, 2007.  The move is being made in order to save
>> the President's $500,000 yearly salary, and also a record $521  
>> Billion
>> in deficit expenditures and related overhead that the office has
>> incurred during the last 5 years. "We believe this is a wise  
>> financial
>> move. The cost savings are huge. " stated Congressman Thomas Reynolds
>> (R-WA). "We cannot remain competitive on the world stage with the
>> current level of cash outlay." Reynolds noted.
>>
>> Mr. Bush was informed by e-mail this morning of his termination.
>> Preparations for the job move have been underway for some time.
>>
>> Gurvinder Sing h of Indus Teleservices, Mumbai, India will assume the
>> office of President as of July 1, 2007. Mr. Singh was born in the  
>> United
>> States while his Indian parents were vacationing at Niagara Falls,  
>> NY,
>> thus making him eligible for the position. He will receive a  
>> salary of
>> $320 (USD) a month but no health coverage or other benefits.
>>
>> It is believed that Mr. Singh will be able to handle his job
>> responsibilities without a support staff. Due to the time difference
>> between the US and India, he will be working primarily at night, when
>> few offices of the US Government will be open.  "Working nights will
>> allow me to keep my day job at the Dell Computer call center," stated
>> Mr. Singh in an exclusive interview. "I am excited about this  
>> position.
>> I always hoped I would be President." A Congressional spokesperson  
>> noted
>> that while Mr. Singh may not be fully aware of all the issues  
>> involved
>> in the office of President, this should not be a problem as President
>> Bush had never been familiar with the issues either.
>>
>> Mr. Singh will rely upon a script tree that will enable him to  
>> respond
>> effectively to most topics of concern. Using these canned  
>> responses, he
>> can address common concerns without having to understand the  
>> underlying
>> issue at all.  "We know these scripting tools work," stated the
>> spokesperson.  "President Bush has used them successfully for years,
>> with the result that some people actually thought he knew what he was
>> talking about."
>>
>> Bush will receive health coverage, expenses, and salary until his  
>> final
>> day of employment. Following a two week waiting period, he will be
>> eligible for $140 a week unemployment for 13 weeks.  Unfortunately he
>> will not be eligible for Medicaid, as his unemployment benefits will
>> exceed the allowed limit.  Mr. Bush has been provided with the
>> outplacement services of Manpower, Inc. to help him write a resume  
>> and
>> prepare for his upcoming job transition. According to Manpower,  
>> Mr. Bush
>> may have difficulties in securing a new position due to a lack of any
>> successful work experience during his lifetime.  A Greeter  
>> position at
>> Wal-Mart was suggested due to Bush's extensive experience at shaking
>> hands, as well as his special smile.
>>
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
>> [mailto:permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Kenneth
>> Benway
>> Sent: Sunday, June 17, 2007 1:10 AM
>> To: 'permaculture'
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Design-Bioregional-Energy Policy-Feasible
>> Power Solutions.US.Fl
>>
>>
>> The name of the topic has been changed.
>>
>> Recent input from other topics has indicated that we need to look at
>> system design in terms of scale. By that I mean for example, the  
>> solar
>> array on a home system might be simpler and perhaps stationary, as
>> larger power systems might have motorized controls, with parabolic
>> reflectors, that track the sun throughout the day, maximizing power
>> output.
>>
>> Ken
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
>> [mailto:permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Kenneth
>> Benway
>> Sent: Saturday, June 16, 2007 10:07 AM
>> To: 'permaculture'
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Energy-Energy Policy-Bioregional
>> Design-Feasible Power Solutions.US.Fl
>>
>>
>> Recently I posted an article titled:
>> "Energy Policy and Bioregional Design-The Sustainability of Biofuels"
>> I received a large response from this article which for the most  
>> part, I
>> found insightful and relevant to the article.
>>
>> To whoever changed the topic name I would suggest that maybe next  
>> time
>> you consider using a more empowering title like "Feasible Power
>> Solutions" which has a more positive intonation than "Infeasible  
>> power
>> fantasies". This is just a suggestion. In my view our focus should  
>> be on
>> solutions that work not dwelling on those that don't as the topic  
>> name
>> implies. Certainly we must support our "solution" proposals with
>> examples of why other approaches are flawed, this I have no problem
>> with.
>>
>> As I have mentioned in earlier posts, I am taking on a new  
>> permaculture
>> design project which is focused on the Florida biogregion at the
>> bioregional level. Anything we could do to keep the topics and input
>> relating to this specific design would be greatly appreciated. It is
>> very time consuming for me to have to jump all over this list to  
>> dig up
>> and compile information relevant to this project.
>>
>> Jedd pointed out my use of the word "should" in the context of my
>> previous article. Jedd, I agree with you completely, "should" is
>> actually a word that I avoid in conversation due to its obvious
>> connotations, I thank you for your input and will be more vigilant in
>> the future.
>> My only request is that, as Jedd has done in the past, we all  
>> strive to
>> provide these suggestions off list as they tend to distract us  
>> from the
>> topic.
>>
>> Below I have pulled relevant content from the "Infeasible power
>> fantasies" thread and posted them below in a manner that they  
>> relate to
>> a particular system configuration or technology.
>>
>>
>> FEASIBLE POWER SOLUTIONS-FLORIDA BIOREGION
>>
>> Viable Energy System Technologies for the Florida Bioregion
>>
>> 1. Photo Voltaic Power Systems coupled to the grid via a net meter.
>>
>> 2. Photo Voltaic Power Systems disconnected from the grid using  
>> battery
>> systems for energy storage.
>>
>> 3. Photo Voltaic Power Systems using a combination of net meter and
>> batteries
>>
>> 4. Solar water heating systems that provide both hot water for  
>> personal
>> use 	as well as meeting the heating requirement of a building.
>>
>> 5. Passive Solar Design methods that reduce the energy demand of a
>> building.
>>
>> 6. Other emerging Solar to Electric conversion technologies.
>>
>> 7. Other emerging Solar to Hot Liquid conversion technologies.
>>
>> 8. Geothermal technologies that leverage ground water temperatures  
>> with
>> respect to stabilizing ambient air temperatures to a desired level.
>>
>> 9. The use of DC or low voltage AC appliances and other electrical
>> devices 	to both reduce system costs and in house component
>> costs.
>>
>> 	I'm sure that I've missed a few, please feel free to add any
>> that you may be aware of.
>>
>>
>> List participants input:
>>
>> On Sat, 16 Jun 2007, Robyn Francis wrote:
>> > Solar Voltaics are only one means of solar power generation.  
>> Many of
>> the
>> > new solar thermal systems actually peak at 2am so the issue and  
>> some
>> store
>> > heat to generate energy for several days. The only issue then is
>> backup for
>> > extended cloudy wet periods.
>>
>> The above comment begins to discuss key issues that impact system
>> design. Thanks Robyn, for your input.
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------- 
>> ---
>> ----
>> Jebb wrote:
>>
>>  "Are these the things that look like a black corrugated iron roof,
>>  and that get stupidly hot in even the mildest heat .. ?  I've seen
>>  these, and am expect I'll head down that path for my own hot
>>  water system.  Do you have some pointers to manufacturer or retail
>>  pages of the 2am-peak style systems that you're referring to?
>>
>>  As you say, storage of energy becomes the big one, and this is
>>  why solar will always be a component of a green energy provisioning
>>  system .. until room temperature superconductors are invented,
>>  that is."
>>
>> Here Jedd is has brought up several excellent points.
>> 1. relates to solar hot water system designs and related storage  
>> issues.
>>
>> 2. relates to sourcing components for a system. This is a need we all
>> have and perhaps we might consider developing a new sub topic that
>> begins developing a source list for system components by system type.
>> 3. relates to emerging technologies such as "room temperature
>> superconductors" which I would certainly like to know more about.
>>
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------- 
>> ---
>> ----
>>
>> Jedd wrote:
>> "On Sat, 16 Jun 2007, Kenneth Benway wrote:
>> > Solar should meet nearly 100% of Florida's energy needs.
>>
>>  Should is such a useful word, isn't it.
>>
>>  Anyhoo, how do you propose to supply energy when the
>>  sun isn't shining?
>>
>>  Have you calculated the surface area that would need to be  covered
>> with PVC's in order to provide the necessary power?"
>>
>> To address Jebb's comments above:
>> The first is handled. ( perhaps we might consider outlawing the word
>> "should" from this list, just kidding!)
>> With regard to the second remark the answer is storage batteries.
>> With respect to the third comment, We need to find creative ways to
>> reduce energy consumption which ultimately would drive the power
>> requirement which would determine how much surface area we need for
>> photo voltaic. The remaining question will be resolved using simple
>> math.
>>
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------- 
>> ---
>> ----
>>
>> Robyn wrote:
>>
>> "Jedd, you need to think beyond the isolated individual household
>> systems. At that scale currently solar voltaics are pretty-much all
>> that's on offer. However there's a lot of innovation happening with
>> solar thermal systems and most of these operate on a larger scale to
>> power from 20 up to 200,000 households. Many of these employ  
>> parabolic
>> reflectors. Some store heat overnight using various liquids.
>>
>> Some of these could be installed on flat rooftops in innercity  
>> areas and
>> industrial estates or even over roofed carparks. Other prototypes  
>> have
>> been set up on farmland with no disturbance to livestock free-range
>> grazing underneath.
>>
>> You might like to check out
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_thermal_energy just to see how  
>> a few
>> solarthermal power generation systems work. I've seen other
>> systems/variations in documentaries and various science & technology
>> articles.
>>
>> There's also the solarthermal power station being built in Western  
>> NSW
>> with a big glasshouse covering hectares of land. The hot air
>> accumulating under the glass feeds convectively through a huge  
>> tower in
>> the centre driving a turbine. This system also is expected to peak  
>> daily
>> at 2-3pm.
>>
>> Robyn,
>> Now we are hitting the nail on the head. Scale is a key issue here  
>> and
>> the system design configuration will change as a function of scale.
>> Thanks again for your powerful insights.
>>
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------- 
>> ---
>> ----
>> Thanks to all that contributed to the previous topic. If I missed any
>> input, I apologize. As I mentioned earlier it can become difficult to
>> find these valuable nuggets of pertinent information when  
>> searching this
>> list.
>>
>> Regard,
>> Ken Benway
>> Arcadian Design
>> St Petersburg Fl
>> www.KenBenway.com
>>
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this outgoing message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this incoming message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this outgoing message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this incoming message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this outgoing message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 2
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 06:15:06 -0400
>> From: "Kenneth Benway" <ken at arcadiandesign.org>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress
>> 	Votes to Outsource Presidency!
>> To: "'permaculture'" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <008001c7b0c8$615f1ec0$660aa8d2 at arcadian.local>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1250
>>
>> Whoops! I forgot to rip out the irrelevant material from previous  
>> topic.
>> Sorry. The coffee hasn't kicked in yet.
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
>> [mailto:permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Kenneth
>> Benway
>> Sent: Sunday, June 17, 2007 6:11 AM
>> To: 'permaculture'
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress  
>> Votes
>> to Outsource Presidency!
>>
>> I just couldn't let this one get by without sharing it with the  
>> group. I
>> think that we can always us a good laugh, I know I can.
>> Ken
>>
>> Congress Votes to Outsource Presidency
>>
>> May 24th, 2007: Washington, DC (AP) -- Congress today announced  
>> that the
>> office of President of the United States of America will be  
>> outsourced
>> to India as of July 1, 2007.  The move is being made in order to save
>> the President's $500,000 yearly salary, and also a record $521  
>> Billion
>> in deficit expenditures and related overhead that the office has
>> incurred during the last 5 years. "We believe this is a wise  
>> financial
>> move. The cost savings are huge. " stated Congressman Thomas Reynolds
>> (R-WA). "We cannot remain competitive on the world stage with the
>> current level of cash outlay." Reynolds noted.
>>
>> Mr. Bush was informed by e-mail this morning of his termination.
>> Preparations for the job move have been underway for some time.
>>
>> Gurvinder Sing h of Indus Teleservices, Mumbai, India will assume the
>> office of President as of July 1, 2007. Mr. Singh was born in the  
>> United
>> States while his Indian parents were vacationing at Niagara Falls,  
>> NY,
>> thus making him eligible for the position. He will receive a  
>> salary of
>> $320 (USD) a month but no health coverage or other benefits.
>>
>> It is believed that Mr. Singh will be able to handle his job
>> responsibilities without a support staff. Due to the time difference
>> between the US and India, he will be working primarily at night, when
>> few offices of the US Government will be open.  "Working nights will
>> allow me to keep my day job at the Dell Computer call center," stated
>> Mr. Singh in an exclusive interview. "I am excited about this  
>> position.
>> I always hoped I would be President." A Congressional spokesperson  
>> noted
>> that while Mr. Singh may not be fully aware of all the issues  
>> involved
>> in the office of President, this should not be a problem as President
>> Bush had never been familiar with the issues either.
>>
>> Mr. Singh will rely upon a script tree that will enable him to  
>> respond
>> effectively to most topics of concern. Using these canned  
>> responses, he
>> can address common concerns without having to understand the  
>> underlying
>> issue at all.  "We know these scripting tools work," stated the
>> spokesperson.  "President Bush has used them successfully for years,
>> with the result that some people actually thought he knew what he was
>> talking about."
>>
>> Bush will receive health coverage, expenses, and salary until his  
>> final
>> day of employment. Following a two week waiting period, he will be
>> eligible for $140 a week unemployment for 13 weeks.  Unfortunately he
>> will not be eligible for Medicaid, as his unemployment benefits will
>> exceed the allowed limit.  Mr. Bush has been provided with the
>> outplacement services of Manpower, Inc. to help him write a resume  
>> and
>> prepare for his upcoming job transition. According to Manpower,  
>> Mr. Bush
>> may have difficulties in securing a new position due to a lack of any
>> successful work experience during his lifetime.  A Greeter  
>> position at
>> Wal-Mart was suggested due to Bush's extensive experience at shaking
>> hands, as well as his special smile.
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> No virus found in this outgoing message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.472 / Virus Database: 269.8.15/848 - Release Date:
>> 6/13/2007 12:50 PM
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 3
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 06:26:29 -0400
>> From: "Lawrence F. London, Jr." <lfl at intrex.net>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] BodyPolictic-Political Humor-Congress
>> 	Votes to Outsource Presidency!
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <46750C55.3090301 at intrex.net>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii; format=flowed
>>
>> Kenneth Benway wrote:
>>
>> > I just couldn't let this one get by without sharing it with the  
>> group. I
>> > think that we can always us a good laugh, I know I can.
>> > Ken
>> >
>> > Congress Votes to Outsource Presidency
>>
>> This crosses the line, it has absolutely nothing to do with  
>> permaculture.
>> Do we need to pass the hat and pay for therapy for you Ken?
>>
>> Read my keystrokes, no more political posts. These ladies say it too:
>> http://www.ibiblio.org/ecolandtech/images/bush3.jpg
>>
>> We've been losing a subscriber every few days, unusual for this  
>> forum.
>> Back to PC. Be Permaculturally Correct.
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 4
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 05:57:31 -0500
>> From: "John Wages" <jwages at earthlink.net>
>> Subject: [permaculture] Permaculture Activist
>> To: "permaculture" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <410-220076017105731500 at earthlink.net>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
>>
>> Issue #66 of the Permaculture Activist (submission deadline:   
>> Sept. 1) is
>> about "Animals in Permaculture."  Although we are always open to  
>> new ideas,
>> a few topics of special interest for this issue follow.  If you  
>> would like
>> to submit an article, please do so.  It would be good to let us  
>> know in
>> advance so that we can better plan the layout.  Writer's  
>> guidelines are
>> found at
>> www.permacultureactivist.net/writersguidelines/writersguidelines.htm
>>
>> Possible topics:
>> miniature livestock (i.e., Dexter cattle, pot-bellied pigs),  
>> preferably in
>> a permaculture setting
>> poultry forages:  temperate, as well as tropical
>> low-input systems to feed poultry:  earthworms, mealworms
>> successful application of ducks for slug control (with specifics)
>> draft animals
>> appropriate uses of dogs, cats in a permaculture setting
>> "wildcrafting" game animals and livestock like guinea fowl,  
>> pigeons, quail,
>> pheasants
>> raising rabbits in colonies (warrens)
>> fencing:  specifics on electric net fencing, living fences, etc.
>> specifics of successful guilds that incorporate animals
>> protecting young plantings from wild animals such as deer
>> humane slaughter methods:  does anyone "gas" chickens on a small  
>> scale?
>> examples of highly integrated systems:
>> greenhouse/vermicompost/chickens/ducks
>> specific breeds that have advantages in particular permaculture  
>> systems
>> microlivestock
>> animal health:  holistic approaches, medicinal herbs
>> beekeeping:  Does anyone keep bees successfully without miticides and
>> antibiotics and without experiencing CCD?  How do you do it?
>> insects and other low-on-the-food-chain species (freshwater  
>> shrimp) as
>> human food
>>
>> John
>>
>> John Wages
>> Guest Editor, Permaculture Activist
>> jwages at earthlink.net or editor at permacultureactivist.ne
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 5
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 21:36:53 +1000
>> From: "Linda Shewan" <linda.shewan at bryn.com.au>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Seedballs
>> To: "permaculture" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID:
>> 	<81E7377A1303BC46A46DD9DDB0FE82CB33DDED at EXCHSV01.bryn.com.au>
>> Content-Type: text/plain;	charset="us-ascii"
>>
>> Thanks Dieter,
>>
>> I have no option but to try the clay covered option as broadcast  
>> sowing
>> simply feeds the crows/ravens, magpies, sparrows, currawongs,  
>> cockatoos
>> and countless other winged friends. And a covering of straw/hay  
>> has no
>> impact except providing light entertainment for the birds...
>>
>> When we get this project going I will report back on our success  
>> rate.
>> It's a school project that will hopefully be grant funded so we  
>> will be
>> recording the results.
>>
>> Cheers, Linda
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Dieter Brand [mailto:diebrand at yahoo.com]
>> Sent: Saturday, 16 June 2007 9:05 PM
>> To: permaculture
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Seedballs
>>
>> Linda,
>>
>>   Last fall and the year before, I did some tests with seedballs in
>> parallel
>>   with the direct broadcasting of seeds. I found that it either  
>> didn't
>>   work at all, or that the seedball plots germinated much later  
>> than the
>>   directly seeded plots.
>>
>>   Going by the discussions on the Fukuoka farming group, this is
>> probably
>>   similar to what a lot of people experience, since one usually never
>> hears
>>   from people again who announce that they are going to try it.
>>
>>   The problem I found was that the seeds in the seedballs didn't
>> germinate
>>   with light rain, at a time when the directly broadcast seeds had
>> already
>>   germinated. When the rain would get stronger, the clay would be  
>> washed
>>
>>   away, and the seeds, I had taken so much trouble to enclose in the
>> clay
>>   balls, where laying on the ground just as the directly broadcast
>> seeds,
>>   except that the latter had germinated much sooner. I live in a
>> semi-arid
>>   region in the South of Portugal, where the climate is very  
>> different
>> from
>>   the humid climate encountered by Fukuoka in Japan. This may account
>>   for some of the problems I had.
>>
>>   If you do give it a try, don't use the mesh-method. I went to great
>>   expense to buy 3 differently graded metal meshes and fix them to
>>   wooden frames. It was extremely messy and took ages just to
>>   pellet a handful of seeds. It is amazing that Fukuoka should have
>>   included this method in his book, which he very obviously can't
>>   have tested himself.
>>
>>   For a small-scale test use a large bowl (or tray) with a smooth  
>> inner
>>   surface, throw in a handful of seeds and about 3 to 5 times that
>>   amount of finely pulverized clay (you need to smash dry clay, then
>>   pass it through a fine sieve so as to get rid of all stones);  
>> then one
>>
>>   person needs to swing the bowl around (great for your belly  
>> muscles),
>>   so that the contents will roll along the inner side-surfaces of the
>>   bowl (back and forth with the tray), while another persons adds  
>> water
>>   little by little (best to use a spraying device of some sort).  
>> After a
>>
>>   while the pellets will form. It usually can't be avoided that some
>>   pellets contain more than one seed.
>>
>>   For growing a crop by this method one needs some sort of revolving
>>   drum device like a concrete mixer without the inner shovels. But I
>>   wouldn't go to the expense of building one before testing if I want
>>   to use the seedball method on a regular base.
>>
>>   Once I get a little more time, I will give it another try since the
>>   pelleting of seeds allows for a much more flexible seeding  
>> schedule.
>>   Right now, I can only use direct broadcasting from 15 Nov. until
>>   the end of March because of the ants. I can use mulch to protect
>>   the seeds against birds, while rodents and other wee creatures only
>>   take a small part, but the ants will get every single seed even  
>> under
>>   a layer of mulch.
>>
>>   Dieter Brand
>>   Portugal
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 6
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 09:13:39 -0400
>> From: "Lawrence F. London, Jr." <lfl at intrex.net>
>> Subject: [permaculture] the night of the living dead
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <46753383.5050307 at intrex.net>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
>>
>> -------- Original Message --------
>> Subject: [SANET-MG] the night of the living dead
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 06:46:58 -0400
>> From: jcummins <jcummins at UWO.CA>
>> Reply-To: Sustainable Agriculture Network Discussion Group <SANET- 
>> MG at LISTS.IFAS.UFL.EDU>
>> To: SANET-MG at LISTS.IFAS.UFL.EDU
>>
>> 'Zombie crops' funded by British taxpayers to 'get
>> round' GM ban
>> By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Editor the independent
>> Published: 17 June 2007
>> "Zombie" GM crops - so called because farmers will have to pay  
>> biotech
>> companies to bring seeds back from the dead - are being developed  
>> with
>> British taxpayers' money.
>> The highly controversial development - part of a ?3.4m EU research
>> project - is bound to increase concerns about the modified crops  
>> and the
>> devastating effect they could have on Third World farmers.
>> Environmentalists charge that it appears to be an attempt to get  
>> round a
>> worldwide ban on a GM technology so abhorred that even Monsanto has
>> said it will not use it.
>> The ban is on the so-called "terminator technology", which was  
>> designed
>> to modify crops so that they produce only sterile seeds. This  
>> would force
>> the 1.4 billion poor farmers who traditionally save seeds from one
>> year's harvest to sow for the following one instead to buy new  
>> ones from
>> biotech firms, swelling their profits but increasing poverty and  
>> hunger.
>> Since the ban was agreed under a UN treaty seven years ago, companies
>> and pro-GM countries - including the United States and Britain - have
>> pressed to have it overturned, so far without success. But the new
>> technology promises to offer companies an even more profitable way of
>> achieving dominance.
>> Zombie crops would also be engineered to produce sterile seed that  
>> could
>> be brought back to life with the right treatment - almost  
>> certainly with a
>> chemical sold by the company that markets the seed. Farmers would
>> therefore have to pay out, not for new seeds, but to make the ones  
>> they
>> saved viable.
>> A report published last week by ETC - the Canada-based Action  
>> Group on
>> Erosion Technology and Concentration that led the campaign against
>> terminator technology - calls this "a dream scenario for the Gene  
>> Giants".
>> It says it will be cheaper for them to sell farmers the chemicals to
>> revive saved seeds than to pay the costs of storing and  
>> distributing new
>> ones. It
>> adds: "They will initially keep prices low. But once farmers are  
>> on the
>> platform, and the competition has been destroyed, the companies  
>> can start
>> pricing the chemical that restores seed viability as high as they  
>> like.
>> The key point is that the viability of the crop would be  
>> controlled by the
>> corporation that sells the seed."
>> The three-year EU research programme, called Transcontainer, which
>> involves 13 universities and research institutes and is partially  
>> funded by
>> taxpayers in Britain and other EU countries, says that it is  
>> developing
>> the technology to try to "reduce significantly" the spread of GM  
>> genes to
>> conventional and organic crops.
>> Such contamination - long denied and downplayed by the industry  
>> and its
>> supporters - is now accepted to be one of the main obstacles to the
>> advance of modified crops.
>> ETC's report also says that if the new technology is developed,
>> governments and regulators will insist that all GM crops will have  
>> to be
>> engineered to be "zombies" to try to prevent contamination and in the
>> process deliver farmers into complete dependence on the biotech
>> companies.
>> It adds, however, that no containment strategy is foolproof and  
>> that the
>> genes will inevitably spread anyway through pollen.
>> The Transcontainer project insists that it is "specifically  
>> targeted at
>> European agriculture and European crops". But it admits that such
>> technologies "may become a problem for farmers in developing  
>> countries."
>> ETC warns that if the technology is commercialised it will  
>> "ultimately
>> be adopted indiscriminately" everywhere. It concludes: "A scenario  
>> in which
>> farmers have to pay for a chemical to restore seed viability  
>> creates a
>> new perpetual monopoly for the seed industry."
>> 'Zombie crops' funded by British taxpayers to 'get round' GM ban -
>> Inde... http://environment.independent.co.uk/lifestyle/ 
>> article2666422.ece
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 7
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 23:14:55 +1000
>> From: jedd <jedd at progsoc.org>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Seedballs
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <200706172314.55351.jedd at progsoc.org>
>> Content-Type: text/plain;  charset="ansi_x3.4-1968"
>>
>> On Sun, 17 Jun 2007, Linda Shewan wrote:
>> > I have no option but to try the clay covered option as broadcast  
>> sowing
>> > simply feeds the crows/ravens, magpies, sparrows, currawongs,  
>> cockatoos
>> > and countless other winged friends. And a covering of straw/hay  
>> has no
>> > impact except providing light entertainment for the birds...
>>
>>  Linda,
>>
>>  Out of curiosity, what types of plants are you trying to get going,
>>  and on what scale, with this method?
>>
>>  I've never used seedballing - it's always seemed a bit too much
>>  effort compared to seedling things out, or just broadcasting
>>  very opportunistically.  I know it works well in particularly dry
>>  regions where you don't want to stick around for the rains, but
>>  if you're in Vic (?) I wouldn't have thought that'd be the problem.
>>
>>  Jedd.
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 8
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 12:05:34 -0400
>> From: Keith Johnson <keithdj at mindspring.com>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Keith Johnson for President!
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <46755BCE.3090608 at mindspring.com>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
>>
>> Thanks for the votes :-) ...but I've got 600 emails that arrived  
>> while I
>> was away teaching a two week course, more projects than I can shake a
>> stick at, and I'd rather be in the garden than ANY office.  
>> Politicians,
>> in general, would be more effective if they were  
>> mulched...deeply ;-) .
>> Keith
>>
>> J Kolenovsky wrote:
>> > I thought Martin Naylor was better suited for White House Press
>> > Secretary.
>> >
>> > By the way, I meant Keith Johnson for Permaculture President. He  
>> could
>> > be like an emissary (word?) for Mollison and Holmgren. Pay  
>> should be
>> > pretty good.
>> >
>> --
>> Keith Johnson
>> "Be fruitful and mulch apply."
>> Permaculture Activist Magazine
>> PO Box 5516, Bloomington, IN 47408
>> (812) 335-0383
>> http://www.permacultureactivist.net
>> Impeachment: It's not just for blowjobs anymore.
>> Switch to Solar Power the Easy Way
>> http://www.jointhesolution.com/KeithJ-SunPower
>> http://www.PowUr.com/KeithJ-SunPower
>> Blog: http://kjpermaculture.blogspot.com/
>> also Patterns for Abundance Design & Consulting
>> http://www.permacultureactivist.net/design/Designconsult.html
>> also Association for Regenerative Culture
>> also APPLE-Bloomington (Alliance for a Post-Petroleum Local  
>> Economy) It's a small world after oil.
>> http://www.relocalize.net/groups/applebloomington
>> also Bloomington Permaculture Guild
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 9
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 11:21:17 -0400
>> From: "Lawrence F. London, Jr." <lfl at intrex.net>
>> Subject: [permaculture] [Fwd: [SANET-MG] Growing Nonfood Products in
>> 	Transgenic Plants a mild proposal]
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <4675516D.50201 at intrex.net>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii; format=flowed
>>
>> -------- Original Message --------
>> Subject: [SANET-MG] Growing Nonfood Products in Transgenic Plants  
>> a mild proposal
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 09:25:50 -0400
>> From: jcummins <jcummins at UWO.CA>
>> Reply-To: Sustainable Agriculture Network Discussion Group <SANET- 
>> MG at LISTS.IFAS.UFL.EDU>
>> To: SANET-MG at LISTS.IFAS.UFL.EDU
>>
>> An interesting idea is given below. In thinking about the proposal I
>> would like to offer the idea that the Province of Alberta in  
>> Canada  and
>> the State of Washington should be designated places where food crops
>> cannot be planted ,only transgenic pharmaceutical and energy crops  
>> may
>> be grown. In both of these places GM non food crops  have tested  
>> so much
>> that  the  food crops grown in the areas are in question. However,  
>> the
>> lesson has been that the transportation corridors for movement of  
>> the GM
>> crops soon become polluted by the GM crops as has been shown in Japan
>> and in Canada. Thus transportation  corridors will have to be set  
>> aside
>> for the movement of the GM non-food crops. Of course, it would be  
>> much
>> easier to just not grow such crops.
>>
>> Published in Crop Sci 47:1255-1262 (2007)
>> DOI: 10.2135/cropsci2006.09.0594
>>
>> Methods for Growing Nonfood Products in Transgenic Plants
>> John A. Howarda,* and Elizabeth E. Hoodb
>>
>> a Applied Biotechnology Institute, Bldg. 36, Cal Poly State Univ.,  
>> San
>> Luis Obispo, CA 93407
>> b Arkansas State Univ., P.O. Box 2760, State Univ., AR 72467
>>
>> The relatively high cost of producing select industrial and
>> pharmaceutical products in traditional hosts has led many groups to
>> investigate the benefits of plant-based production systems.  
>> Transgenic
>> plants can offer significant cost advantages for select products, but
>> the advantage can be eroded occasionally by the cost of  
>> confinement to
>> segregate them from commodity crops. The conceptual similarities and
>> differences between transgenic plant production systems and other
>> transgenic hosts are discussed in regard to regulations and public
>> perception. A system of regulated transgenic production is described
>> that is based on dedicating an area solely to industrial products.  
>> This
>> system would take advantage of surrounding crops that are also  
>> grown for
>> industrial applications to offset the cost of growing the regulated
>> transgenic plants. Examples are given that demonstrate the economic
>> advantages of the system while concurrently creating a clearer
>> distinction between food and nonfood products. This system may also
>> increase public confidence, as it is modeled on current systems  
>> used to
>> produce regulated transgenic products in nonplant hosts.
>>
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> Message: 10
>> Date: Sun, 17 Jun 2007 13:25:08 -0400
>> From: Keith Johnson <keithdj at mindspring.com>
>> Subject: Re: [permaculture] Pollies and permies
>> To: permaculture <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
>> Message-ID: <46756E74.4090504 at mindspring.com>
>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
>>
>> ditto.
>>
>> David Riley wrote:
>> > Ken, when I see your name now, or anyone referring to the  
>> politician that you feel the need to rant on about, or the word  
>> POLITICS, I delete the message or skip it. Through your adamant  
>> stance you have, in my view, assigned your own name and subject to  
>> the no read list.
>> --
>> Keith Johnson
>> "Be fruitful and mulch apply."
>> Permaculture Activist Magazine
>> PO Box 5516, Bloomington, IN 47408
>> (812) 335-0383
>> http://www.permacultureactivist.net
>> Impeachment: It's not just for blowjobs anymore.
>> Switch to Solar Power the Easy Way
>> http://www.jointhesolution.com/KeithJ-SunPower
>> http://www.PowUr.com/KeithJ-SunPower
>> Blog: http://kjpermaculture.blogspot.com/
>> also Patterns for Abundance Design & Consulting
>> http://www.permacultureactivist.net/design/Designconsult.html
>> also Association for Regenerative Culture
>> also APPLE-Bloomington (Alliance for a Post-Petroleum Local  
>> Economy) It's a small world after oil.
>> http://www.relocalize.net/groups/applebloomington
>> also Bloomington Permaculture Guild
>>
>>
>> ------------------------------
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> permaculture mailing list
>> permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
>> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/permaculture
>>
>>
>> End of permaculture Digest, Vol 53, Issue 46
>> ********************************************
>
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