[permaculture] Natural hydroponics, aquatic foodweb & quality food

sals3 sals3 at cox.net
Mon Apr 8 21:21:37 EDT 2013


what I'm trying to say is you can set up a soil-food-web, hydroponically
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "sals3" <sals3 at cox.net>
To: "permaculture" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
Cc: "Toby Hemenway" <toby at patternliteracy.com>
Sent: Monday, April 08, 2013 4:56 PM
Subject: Re: [permaculture] Natural hydroponics, aquatic foodweb & quality 
food


>> Been busy since yesterday and hadn't seen this thread (with three
>> separate subject headers) until now.  This is how it started (I wrote):
>>
>>> Wikipedia defines hydroponics as follows:
>>>
>>>      *Hydroponics*  is a subset of hydroculture and is a method of 
>>> growing
>>>      plants<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plant>  using mineral nutrient
>>>      <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutrient>  solutions, in water, 
>>> without
>>>      soil<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soil>. Terrestrial plants may be
>>>      grown with their roots<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Root>  in the
>>>      mineral nutrient solution only or in an inert medium,
>>>
>>>
>>> Which the way I understand hydroponics:  There's no soil, no
>>> soil-food-web, no soil biology - it's not even agriculture (much less
>>> permaculture), which helps explain why I become distempered if I eat
>>> even a little (something which I would not knowingly do).
>> Lawrence took exception (he said it wasn't true) and cited you, and
>> wanted me to look for your earlier posts on this subject, (which i did
>> not intend to do), but then he reposted them, so I read them and must
>> admit that water (or swamp, or compost tea) can be a (very) biologically
>> active medium.
>>
>> In practice (however), in most cases it isn't, because most of those
>> that implement hydroponic systems aren't thing in biological terms. Be
>> that as it may, it CAN be built into the equation, if and when:
>>
>> Whoever doing it wants create an artificial ag production system and use
>> it for growing food because THAT (dear friends) is what all this is
>> about (sez me)!
>>
>> O lives in the Everglades or Okefenoee Swamp (on a house boat or an 
>> island)
>>
>> And are willing to forget about little things like Soil Tilth and all
>> that it stands for.
>>
>> So it's kind of an academic issue, IMO.
>>
>>
>>  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:AlligatorFL2007.JPG
>>  <cid:part5.09060908.02080201 at gmx.net>
>>
>> An alligator lounges on a log in the Okefenokee Swamp.
>>
>>
>> Earlier Today April 07, 2013 at 01:52 PM, Toby Hemenway wrote:
>>
>>> ... I have mixed feelings about hydroponics, like aquaponics and many 
>>> other tech-heavy forms of food production (which is most of modern ag: 
>>> How much of your food uses a tractor?)
>> Not a heck of a lot.  This is what I ate today:
>>
>> Guamuchiles Pithecellobium dulce
>> <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pithecellobium_dulce>
>>
>> Mangoes <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mangifera_indica> (but not the
>> ones sent to the USA, which are all grafted varieties)
>>
>> Mamey Sopote <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pouteria_sapota>
>>
>> None of these are grafted.
>>
>>> Hydroponics makes sense to me in limited cases, such as where soils are 
>>> toxic and organic matter, access to land, and the other pieces of 
>>> "natural" agriculture are limited, and where tech resources are easy to 
>>> get. Cities, in other words.
>> I may live in a city at present (because politics and ag policy is what
>> I am doing) but my food (what keeps me alive) is brought in from outside
>> (but nearby).
>>> Hydroponics and such can't be considered regenerative, so I can see why 
>>> anyone slightly purist would loathe them.
>>
>> Don't loathe, I just don't eat them.
>>
>>> I would like to see us all growing food in healthy soil,
>>
>> <snip>
>>
>>> In (narrow) terms of nutrition, soil is a delivery medium to get 
>>> minerals into plants.
>>
>> IMO, soil is the result of a long term evolutionary process and an
>> environment in which terrestrial organisms have evolved and adapted.
>>
>> Sure, there are other ways to go, but I myself have a long evolutionary
>> history and I accept it. I'm not adapted to swamps or cities, flying in
>> the sky or life in the deep blue sea.
>>
>> I want to remain close to my source and artifical life support systems
>> are of little interest to me, personally.  But to each, his (or her) own.
>>
>> BTW, Coahuayana, Michoacan was a swamp before drainage canals were dug
>> and now it produces prodigious amounts of excellent tropical fruit .
>>
>> So Lawrence, I said what I meant and I meant what I said.
>>
>> I am a soil based critter myself and that's where MY food comes from.
>> Good luck with your water cress.
>>
>> Douglas
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