Trying to apply the gardening aspects of Mollison's books to my situation is a bit complexicated by the fact that he speaks in terms of plants and trees familiar to Australia but not so familiar to us. But, I grasp for the concepts that seem to translate reasonably well to my situation and figure that if I can do even that much, I'm doing fairly well.
So, what are some of the concepts I hope to implement here on my homestead? Let's see:
- Each element should perform multiple functions. (example: chickens provide eggs, meat, manure, and bug control)
- Each important function should be met by multiple elements. (example: water supply from well/city and rain catchment and pond)
- Efficient energy planning -- zoning..put those things requiring the most attention closest to you
- cycling of energy, nutrients, and resources (example, composting)
- small-scale intensive systems
- diversity, including guilds (no monoculture...mix the plantings)
- edge effects (the most benefit comes at the edges...)
- work with nature not against it...it's not about wiping out all pests but keeping the system in balance
- make the least change for the greatest benefit
Chickens here...rabbits there...tomatoes over there...wait, no...tomatoes over here, chickens there...no, that's not right...I think I need more of my son's pear butter to fuel my thought processes....