It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Permaculture Seedball Forest Gardening

page: 1
6

log in

join
share:

posted on May, 27 2010 @ 07:20 PM
link   
A simple form of gardening,
even a child could do,
to sustain themselves,
on abundant and diverse produce.

Like to dedicate this thread to Masanobu Fukuoka who rediscovered seedballs and natural farming.

Might be a member of the Orion Priesthood as indicative of his neutral focus.

from ‘The Natural Way Of Farming’
“One never blames nature, but begins by blaming oneself. One searches unrelentingly for a way to grow barley in the heart of nature. There is no good or evil in nature. Natural farming admits to the existence neither of insect pests nor of beneficial insects. If a pest outbreak occurs, damaging the barley, one reflects that this was probably triggered by some human mistake. Invariably, the cause lies in some action by man; perhaps the barley was seeded too densely or a beneficial fungus that attacks pests was killed, upsetting nature’s balance. Thus, in natural farming, one always solves the problem by reflecting on the mistake and returning as close to nature as possible.”

So it be the philosophy natural forest gardening.

Robert Hart from UK also has done forest gardening, but takes a more laborious western approach using pruning and mulching. This video is otherwise a good introduction to forest gardening.




Forest gardening is perhaps the worlds best hope for a future.
Plants for a future pfaf.org... has a database of over 7,000 useful plants.
Many plants commonly considered "weeds" actually may be edible and have many uses.




Seedballs are a natural way of planting seeds,
which is much simpler than tilling,
and more efficient than broadcasting.

As the bird or animal that eats some fruit,
mixes it with compost and clay,
and excretes a seedball,
so it is natural.



So have a go make a forest garden.
If you don't have a plot, guerilla garden.

Get the seed and skills you need,
to sustain yourself and your family.
Healthy, happy, and abundantly appreciative.


[edit on 27-5-2010 by lowki]




posted on May, 28 2010 @ 03:09 AM
link   
Sounds like a good idea for farming in a coniferous forest where soil ph is often far from ideal due to years of pine needles covering the soil.

A+ thread.

I wonder if seed balls stored in one gallon zip locks would keep for a couple of years. Think about the storage potential for a survival scenario. Imagine a single large ball, wrapped in burlap or thatched peat, dried out and stored with a seed packet in an extra large zip lock. You could grow any common garden vegetable that way.

You could make seed 'blocks' that resemble rockwool but lend more themselves to organic vegetable gardens.

A one foot block tightly bound in burlap could grow 16 carrots, 8 bean plants, one tomato plant, one corn plant

On those lines, imagine utilizing stored seed balls or blocks in the aftermath of nuclear fallout. Typical procedure after fallout is to remove the top soil to a certain depth determined by the amount of rain fall.

With seed balls one could wait till the fallout radiation to dissipate to reasonable levels (1 month+) and set out seed balls on a rinsed or protected surface, such as the interior walls of a sealed building that did not have central air running during heavy fallout periods directly after the disaster. Simply remove wall paneling outside and set the balls on them.

I am going to try this out. I am in the Pacific North West and it is not too late to try this out and get some small harvest in the fall starting with seed and transplants.

I may even write up an article posting my results here. I can take pictures and compare results with other mediums like rockwool and passive hydro systems that utilize similar volumes of water. Of course I would have to add fert to the passive hydro but now I will try to find natural and organic nutrients to add to the water.

I wonder if the soil ph would change from sitting on a bed of pine needles.

Oh, maybe you could place seed balls/blocks in trees to break the canopy of dense forest! You could rest a 1 ft block on a high tree branch secured with strips of burlap that wont harm the tree as it grows if it becomes necessary to leave the area quickly. Can you imagine pine tree full of tomato plants?

Talk about a good way to avoid slugs!

Man, this is just what I have been looking for to pass the time, I'll keep you updated.

Thanks OP for the idea!

Would be cool to see others in different climates give this a go too.

[edit on 28-5-2010 by cavscout]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:43 PM
link   

Originally posted by cavscout
Sounds like a good idea for farming in a coniferous forest where soil ph is often far from ideal due to years of pine needles covering the soil.



Here there is an advanced search where you can look for plants based on location, soil type or many other factors.

www.ibiblio.org...



A+ thread.

Thanks :-D

I learn from the top of ATS.
Truly a wonderful school,
of well organized posters.



I wonder if seed balls stored in one gallon zip locks would keep for a couple of years.

It's true that being in a seedball,
may make the environment more hospitable for the seeds,
as it will let the temperature and humidity fluctuate more evenly.

seeds generally only last a few years.
www.hillgardens.com...

here is a website on conventional ways of storing seed.
howtosaveseeds.com...



Think about the storage potential for a survival scenario. Imagine a single large ball, wrapped in burlap or thatched peat, dried out and stored with a seed packet in an extra large zip lock. You could grow any common garden vegetable that way.

seedballs are usually many marble size balls, with seeds in them already.
it's a method of distribution,
and it is true you can grow any common garden vegetable,
as well as many other kinds of plants in such a manner.

if you mean to have clay, compost and seed ready to make seedballs.
yes this is certainly a good idea.

in toronto the soil is so clayful that I usually just mix the topsoil with the clay layer underneath to make my seedballs.
so I make them directly in the field,
then I take seedball size clumps and throw them,
they dry into balls with the sunlight.
so it's a bit quicker and easier.

I've even done it with larger seeds,
like plum and peaches,
with correspondingly larger seedballs.



You could make seed 'blocks' that resemble rockwool but lend more themselves to organic vegetable gardens.

A one foot block tightly bound in burlap could grow 16 carrots, 8 bean plants, one tomato plant, one corn plant

this sounds more like container gardening.




On those lines, imagine utilizing stored seed balls or blocks in the aftermath of nuclear fallout. Typical procedure after fallout is to remove the top soil to a certain depth determined by the amount of rain fall.

With seed balls one could wait till the fallout radiation to dissipate to reasonable levels (1 month+) and set out seed balls on a rinsed or protected surface, such as the interior walls of a sealed building that did not have central air running during heavy fallout periods directly after the disaster. Simply remove wall paneling outside and set the balls on them.


Personally I think that's a bad idea.
Most of people that did that kind of stuff in Ukraine or Belarus after Chernobyl, died.
Dealing with radioactive waste is quite often fatal.



A much better solution is simply to go somewhere else,
where it is farther away from any fallout.

Most likely only highly populated centers,
and critical transportation junctures would be targeted.

So getting to an upwind rural or wilderness area is recommended.
Remember in the temperate latitudes we mainly have westerlies,
flowing from west to east,
so being on the west coast is upwind of the rest of the continent.

Make sure to avoid being on the east of any fallout.
Though as happened at Chernobyl where there were south easterly winds,
the wind might be traveling in a different direction than usual.
So check where it's going at the time.

Nature will naturally restore the land.
As it has in Chernobyl,
there are birds nesting on the reactor.

Nature is doing quite fine,
it's now called "wolfs land",
many wolves, chickens and pigs,
it's mainly the humans that have left.

Perhaps due to much genetic engineering,
homo-sapiens genes are more fragile.

Ra from Law of One has stated there are radiation resilient beings in some deep forests,
that will be able to intermix with us in case the radiation levels become excessive.



9.18 Questioner: I didn’t understand what these vehicles or beings were for that were appropriate in the event of nuclear war.

Ra: I am Ra. These are beings which exist as instinctual second-density beings which are being held in reserve to form what you would call a gene pool in case these body complexes are needed. These body complexes are greatly able to withstand the rigors of radiation which the body complexes you now inhabit could not do.

lawofone.info...

When I imagine (remote-view) them,
I see white and black fur with red eyes,
highly stealthy and quick,
they have tails.



I am going to try this out. I am in the Pacific North West and it is not too late to try this out and get some small harvest in the fall starting with seed and transplants.

Yes certainly is a good idea.

Getting good at gardening to a level sufficient
to provide for even just yourself,
can take a few years of practice.

Also when you garden you'll get lots more seeds.



I may even write up an article posting my results here. I can take pictures and compare results

Great Idea!
:-D *hugs*

I've done something quite similar.
From seedballs I threw last year I've gotten some wild strawberries growing:


From seedballs thrown earlier this spring already got some peas going strong:




with other mediums like rockwool and passive hydro systems that utilize similar volumes of water. Of course I would have to add fert to the passive hydro but now I will try to find natural and organic nutrients to add to the water.


in case of an SHTF event,
how are you going to get rockwool or hydroponics?
lol

might as well get your plants growing in the natural environment,
then they could spread "wild" so you wont have to seed them yourself.



Oh, maybe you could place seed balls/blocks in trees to break the canopy of dense forest! You could rest a 1 ft block on a high tree branch secured with strips of burlap that wont harm the tree as it grows if it becomes necessary to leave the area quickly. Can you imagine pine tree full of tomato plants?

I can imagine it.
Though I can also imagine how difficult it would be to get them up there.

One way I was thinking of getting more light through the canopy is by introducing honey fungus.
en.wikipedia.org...

They are tasty healthy mushrooms.
And are a self-sustaining way of clearing trees.
For immediate vicinity cases a saw or axe can be used.
For generally thinning out the forest for more light,
honey fungus can be self-sustaining,
and food bearing.


Mushrooms are the only natural sources
of supplemental vitamin D and B12 for vegans.




Talk about a good way to avoid slugs!

The forest gardening solution is ducks.
Many ducks love to eat snails.
So might want to have at least one pond.
Ponds can also be very high producers.

Ducks might also eat other things,
so make sure to have enough food for the whole family.




Man, this is just what I have been looking for to pass the time, I'll keep you updated.

Thanks OP for the idea!

Would be cool to see others in different climates give this a go too.
[edit on 28-5-2010 by cavscout]


Seedballing and forest gardening been done in many different environments.
In India and Africa some forest gardens are centuries if not millennium old.
Indeed one might say all of nature is a forest garden,
every animal doing it's part as a gardner.

Sumerian slave powered plow agriculture has made sustenance difficult.

Homo-sapiens can also work with nature,
to produce a plethora of food,
for self and others


[edit on 28-5-2010 by lowki]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 03:50 PM
link   

Originally posted by lowki
in case of an SHTF event,
how are you going to get rockwool or hydroponics?
lol


I always have rockwool around and passive hydroponics require very little, a bucket or tub will do fine, even a dugout tree trunk. With a little stirring you can infuse the water with enough oxygen to be successful. Trace minerals such as calcium and magnesium should occur in native water supplies, and nitrogen can be had by mixing one part human urine and 4 to 8 parts water. I would have to do some research on natural sources of phosphorous and potassium, animal blood would probably be an ok source for some ferts.

I was thinking along the lines of survival for my family of 8 in a coniferous forest, so blocks that I can make without storing planting containers would be great. Planting containers just scream "someone lives here." Plants in trees make for better concealment, particularly if the tree isnt filled with artificial containers. No one looks up until they start seeing orange pots in their peripheral vision.

That and I just enjoy doing things differently than everyone else, so something like this is appealing to me.

Thanks again OP.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 10:23 PM
link   

Originally posted by cavscout

Originally posted by lowki
in case of an SHTF event,
how are you going to get rockwool or hydroponics?
lol


I always have rockwool around and passive hydroponics require very little, a bucket or tub will do fine, even a dugout tree trunk. With a little stirring you can infuse the water with enough oxygen to be successful. Trace minerals such as calcium and magnesium should occur in native water supplies, and nitrogen can be had by mixing one part human urine and 4 to 8 parts water. I would have to do some research on natural sources of phosphorous and potassium, animal blood would probably be an ok source for some ferts.


Fukuoka say
"
Man, therefore, is compelled to act because he earlier created the very conditions that now require his action. Because he has made nature unnatural, he must compensate for and correct the defects arising from this unnatural state. Similarly, man's deeds have made farming technology essential. Plowing, transplanting, tillage, weeding, and disease and pest control—all these practices are necessary today because man has tampered with and altered nature.
"



I was thinking along the lines of survival for my family of 8 in a coniferous forest, so blocks that I can make without storing planting containers would be great. Planting containers just scream "someone lives here." Plants in trees make for better concealment, particularly if the tree isnt filled with artificial containers. No one looks up until they start seeing orange pots in their peripheral vision.

or plants in trees.

that's a sight.

"I wonder how come there's a vegetable patch over on that spruce tree",
some people say as they fly over by helicopter.




That and I just enjoy doing things differently than everyone else, so something like this is appealing to me.

Thanks again OP.



Yes forest gardening.

The forest is already full of life and food.
The gardner merely selects what of it they like,
and helps it spread it's seed and grow.

The inner bark of most trees is edible.
Can make bread with it.
Many natives used to.

There are tubers, berries, herbs.
Lots of things already available.
If you simply look up an edible plants book in your area,
you'll find a bewildering diversity of useful plants and mushrooms.

Of course it's better to get forest thriving seeds,
which can be created by having several generations succeed from seedball.

Fukuoka created a rice variety called Happy Hill,
which produced many more seeds than ordinary rice,
while growing in completely natural conditions.

Unfortunately some agribusiness swallowed it up and it's gone now.
But the technique of how to create a wilderness thriving species is with us.


When we attempt to make plants grow in artificial settings,
they become more accustomed to those settings,
and might not do as well when placed in a natural one.

By getting plants to get used to growing in your surrounding forests and fields,
they will have more chance of success and self procreation.

So as to have ample food for you, your family, and those of your community.



posted on May, 29 2010 @ 07:56 AM
link   
great thread! about time someone addressed the issue. long may it live! and very glad to see it has such an attentive op!

concerning natural fertilisers - unsurprisingly, human urine has proven to outperform commercial fertiliser on many counts (please excuse the lack of reference, but it is there to be found) - we all have plenty of it, and in my opinion it is the superior choice due to its natural balance as none of the nutrients have been isolated (and it doesn't carry any factory/transportation energy.) just dilute 1:20 (roughly) for outdoor plants and 1:50 for any you have indoors, maybe once a fortnight or so. undiluted it can be put straight onto compost for an extra boost or on the base of established trees or even lawns. undiluted urine can burn more delicate roots. slightly weathered horse manure (a month or more old) is also an excellent addition to clay-rich soil, or any soil for that matter.
of course, fertiliser of any kind is no longer necessary for an established forest garden, as it takes care of itself, but your annuals will always be grateful for some extra nutrients


have yet to try the seed balls - am also still very much in the early learning stage of gardening, but both my wife and i agree that it is the most giving, grounding and connecting activity we have undertaken in a long time. nearly on a par with having kids


once again great thread, another highly valuable addition to the ats information library.
love and growth



posted on May, 29 2010 @ 05:46 PM
link   

Originally posted by darkcircle2009
and 1:50 for any you have indoors, maybe once a fortnight or so.


I have tried it indoors on some plants that needed it real bad, although in higher concentrate, and the smell was not great. Will not be using it again indoors.

BEST source of nitrogen I know of, though.

Remember though that when human urine is used you must pay very close attention to your TDS (total dissolved solid) level. As the the plant breaks down the nitrogen in urine, and other fertilizers, it leaves behind salts that can prevent future uptake of fertilizers and even water and oxygen. Urine has a higher sodium level than many other ferts.

Those salts can be flushed from soil with large amounts of rain water but cant see how that would be done with soil balls, although I think we seem to be getting away from the more natural gardening that op wanted to showcase here.

Oh, attention must also be paid to the soil Ph. To high or low and your plant will not be able to take in macro or micro nutrients. We all have differing Ph levels in our urine, so invest in a Ph tester and test the water/ferts that drain out of the container, or test before application if using these seed balls.

Along those lines, due to the inability to do much about soil TDS in seed balls, one could foliar feed through the leaves of the plant by spraying nutes, although I would not suggest foliar feeding plants that will give fruit within a month of harvest.



posted on Jun, 1 2010 @ 09:35 AM
link   

Originally posted by darkcircle2009
great thread! about time someone addressed the issue. long may it live! and very glad to see it has such an attentive op!

concerning natural fertilisers - unsurprisingly, human urine has proven to outperform commercial fertiliser on many counts (please excuse the lack of reference, but it is there to be found) - we all have plenty of it, and in my opinion it is the superior choice due to its natural balance as none of the nutrients have been isolated (and it doesn't carry any factory/transportation energy.) just dilute 1:20 (roughly) for outdoor plants and 1:50 for any you have indoors, maybe once a fortnight or so. undiluted it can be put straight onto compost for an extra boost or on the base of established trees or even lawns. undiluted urine can burn more delicate roots. slightly weathered horse manure (a month or more old) is also an excellent addition to clay-rich soil, or any soil for that matter.
of course, fertiliser of any kind is no longer necessary for an established forest garden, as it takes care of itself, but your annuals will always be grateful for some extra nutrients




Originally posted by cavscout
I have tried it indoors on some plants that needed it real bad, although in higher concentrate, and the smell was not great. Will not be using it again indoors.

BEST source of nitrogen I know of, though.

Remember though that when human urine is used you must pay very close attention to your TDS (total dissolved solid) level. As the the plant breaks down the nitrogen in urine, and other fertilizers, it leaves behind salts that can prevent future uptake of fertilizers and even water and oxygen. Urine has a higher sodium level than many other ferts.



It is true that urine can be used as fertilizer.
Manually applying it seems somewhat of a hassle to me personally.
Working with urine isn't a very pleasant activity from my experience.
If having a compost toilet where liquids and solids are seperated,
it could certainly be more convenient to use it.

might decide to add it to an irrigation stream or high slough.

normally if urinating in a forest,
it's best to do so under various trees or shrubs,
which is more likely to benefit from the concentrated fertilizer.

Also it is best to alternate,
as too much fertilizer can kill a plant,
and also smell unpleasant.




Those salts can be flushed from soil with large amounts of rain water but cant see how that would be done with soil balls,


If there is no loam or compost available, and only nutrient poor clay, it is possible to add diluted fertilizer water to give plants the essential nutrients for growth from seedball.

Little animals and birds
are also effective at fertilizing fields,
and are more self-sustaining.

The primary method of fertilizing in forest gardening,
is through planting with "green manure" plants that fix nitrogen,
as well as deep rooted plants that bring up minerals from distant places.
It's a much more long term solution, at the plant scale.

Planting a community of plants,
for the various levels rhizome, ground-cover, herbaceous,
increases yield and reduces niche room for weeds.

Mushrooms are also effective at aiding
with the composting and decomposition process,
also contributing a source of food.



Originally posted by darkcircle2009
have yet to try the seed balls - am also still very much in the early learning stage of gardening, but both my wife and i agree that it is the most giving, grounding and connecting activity we have undertaken in a long time. nearly on a par with having kids


:-) wonderful community spirit.

my partner and I have two kitties, two bunnies, and a highway forest garden.
hopefully we'll upgrade as time goes on. :-D



once again great thread, another highly valuable addition to the ats information library.
love and growth

You've also made a valuable contribution to the thread.
Thank you.


[edit on 1-6-2010 by lowki]

[edit on 1-6-2010 by lowki]



posted on Jun, 2 2010 @ 06:52 AM
link   
lowki and cavscout
thanks for your warm and insightful comments
as said, so much still to learn, and that's so much of the joy! great to have such helpful direction pointers. one thing i have noticed in the gardening world, the people are so very good to one another. respect for life goes a long way

surprised to hear though that you have both found urine problematic, smelly etc... i just piss into a bottle instead of the toilet and put it on the compost, and then every now and then, fortnightly or so, apply fresh urine in low doses, 1:50 as mentioned, and have not yet had any problem with smell at all. (and my wife has a hyper-sensitive nose!) but will pay attention to the points brought up. thanks again.
and all the best with the upgrade lowki!
they truly are a BLESSING



posted on Jun, 10 2010 @ 06:45 PM
link   

Originally posted by darkcircle2009
lowki and cavscout
thanks for your warm and insightful comments
as said, so much still to learn, and that's so much of the joy! great to have such helpful direction pointers. one thing i have noticed in the gardening world, the people are so very good to one another. respect for life goes a long way





surprised to hear though that you have both found urine problematic, smelly etc... i just piss into a bottle instead of the toilet and put it on the compost, and then every now and then, fortnightly or so, apply fresh urine in low doses, 1:50 as mentioned, and have not yet had any problem with smell at all. (and my wife has a hyper-sensitive nose!) but will pay attention to the points brought up. thanks again.

Quite dedicated to environmental sustainability.
Setting a beneficial example to others.



and all the best with the upgrade lowki!
they truly are a BLESSING


Yes, quite certainly.
The present moment becomes greater,
and ever more fruitful,
as it continues.

*hugs*
Seeing the future,
and bringing it into the present.



new topics

top topics



 
6

log in

join