[permaculture] fukuoka_farming mailing list needs aco-moderator.

Dieter Brand diebrand at yahoo.com
Sun Oct 28 05:52:55 EDT 2012

Frances, I don’t have to consult a dictionary to understand the meaning of traditional farming.  I grew up in the 50s on a small family farm in the North of Europe.  I can’t remember if there was a tractor in the village at that time.  But we certainly didn't have the money to afford one.  Nor did we have money to buy fertilizers or herbicides.  My grandfather cultivated the land like it had always been cultivated.  Today, I live in a poor region in the South of Europe.  My land has never seen a tractor or any other heavy equipment.  The previous owner cultivated the land with a donkey like generations before him.

So, the meaning of traditional farming and what it was like to produce most of what you needed for life is still in the living memory, even though it seems totally incomprehensible to most contemporaries who have lived all their life in an industrial society.

I appreciate Permaculture for its emphasis on practical solutions, yet I think there is a basic approach in NF that isn't very well reflected in PC.  As I said, it is impossible to exactly copy NF methods from the Far East, yet I do find inspiring the examples of some NF pioneers who have farmed their land for decades without mechanization and without fertilizers or any other external input.  Even if we cannot use their exact same methods, it demonstrates that we can, under certain circumstances, do without any external inputs, and that it should not be our first priority to soak our land with all kinds of amendments.


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