Tag Archives: perennial

Looking Back, and Forward.

A short while ago, I posted about the books that I’ve read this year, Reading List, and I’ve written two posts about the direction that I’m taking to become more self reliant, here at the Sustainable Smallholding. Creating a Permanent Agriculture, and 2012 Plans, Experiments, and Direction, both look at where I’m heading.What I wanted to do was expand on the same theme, and add a bit more detail.

The catalyst for this post was the understanding of how much has changed this year. I’m moving away from no dig gardening, to digging, and double digging, once in a complete rotation. I am concentrating much more on ‘staple’ foods, and less on interesting, or unusual vegetables, and despite being passionate about trees, and Forest Gardening, I recently found myself wondering if perhaps I should have left a bit more room for growing grains.

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Creating a Permanent Agriculture

My interest in growing grains has just increased, with the arrival of more seeds, this time from America. The packet contained a corn variety, a variety of millet, and most exciting of all, a perennial rye. Luckily I have all winter to consider how to link this in to my Polyculture Experiment, and where.

maximilian sunflower

Maximilian sunflower

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Polyculture Update, Mid September

I’ve spent some time planting up another bed to extend the Grain/vegetable polyculture experiment. It’s only about a days work in total, but has been spread over four. Having harvested maincrop potatoes on Saturday, re-shaped the bed, and then added compost on Sunday, today I planted out another batch of Rye.

Cereal rye seedlings

Cereal Rye Seedlings

The planting is late. I wanted to grow another batch of rye, as the first batch started to go to seed, as reported in an Polyculture Progress. I also had to delay planting until the bed was empty. The planting of this bed was also a conscious decision to expand the scope, and scale of the experiment.

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How Much Land Do I Need to Grow All of My Food?

Hi all

I’ve been looking at the question of how much land we need to grow our own food for some time now, but the question is not an easy one to answer, or find answers to. Whilst thinking about the problem, and during my research, I’ve also thought about how our ancestors lived, although that is obviously from an English perspective. The post doesn’t give a definitive answer to the question, so I’m deliberately not going to put too many tags into it, so that it isn’t accessed by too many people looking for hard facts. Continue reading

Will 2011 be the busiest year ever at The Sustainable Smallholding?

If you have read my recent posts, you could be forgiven for thinking that all I’m doing at the moment is catching swarms. I did think that if ever I wrote an autobiography, this chapter would be entitled ‘Summers in a bee suit’, but I’m trying hard to keep up with all of the other chores that need doing. With no swarms for two days, and after a concerted effort to get ahead of the bees in terms of hive and frame assembly, I have actually managed to spend some time repotting, potting on, planting out, and thinking about the future.

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