[permaculture] Fwd: Re: pasture cropping

Lawrence F. London, Jr. lflj at bellsouth.net
Mon Mar 4 17:05:02 EST 2013

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [SANET-MG] pasture cropping
Date: Tue, 5 Mar 2013 08:56:44 +1100
From: Dennis Argall <dennisargall at GMAIL.COM>

I write from Australia, former organic farm, permaculture design, now in 
country town with house disappearing in jungle.

The interesting project reported at The Solution's Journal seems an 
excellent local adaptation for continuing established purpose with a 
no-till system (vastly better than spray-kill no-till practices). But 
its parameters are still pretty tight. In that relatively dry depleted 
soil environment it would require a greater revolution to do as Steve 
Lawton has demonstrated in the middle east:

On those Australian farms engaged in 'pasture cropping' placement of the 
annual grain crop is by direct drill of major machine. Vegetables would 
fail in that environment and probably an environment consistent with 
good vegetable growing would be bad for sheep, risking fly-strike and 
footrot. Massed poultry would be more valuable in the latter, moveable 
electric fences are available. I have used this product happily:

I don't know what vegetables you had in mind, broad leafy types may tend 
to smother and reduce perennial grasses.

Fukuoka made small scale coated seeds in clay pellets to broadcast into 
previous crop, clay protecting the seed from pests before rain arrived.
see also
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ft0ylk4sU5M n.b. around 24 minutes and 29 

In One Straw Revolution
see especially pages 118-9

Also see Mollison's Permaculture Designers Manual (not the skinny books)

'Stacking' of plants is an alternative to rotation, enabling 'no-till'. 
In permaculture teaching in the past I have suggested soil biota might 
be compared usefully with Manhattan, very lively especially if not 
turned upside down. I am trying to find the right geriatric's garden 
weapon to chop weeds and grasses low, rather than pull them out. 
Carefully cycling ducks and chickens through can achieve this - when 
I've gotten the vulnerables all up in raised beds! In my small jungle I 
am concerned about production per cubic metre, not per plant.



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