Permanent agriculture is an effort to provide humanity with a design system, a tool-kit to act in a beneficial way, as a part of creation.
The methodology to observe nature is about observing things happening and evolve a design strategy from the observations.
At this time you're in the field, taking notes. Looking for patterns.
Look at something happening, then start to reason as to why it happens and ask:
"How can I use this information?"
When we ask nature for a proper way to behave, we gain ethics.
When we ask what patterns there are that we can rely on, we gain science through studying reliable patterns.
There is an experiential factor to design, because our natural capabilities are some of the best instruments available.
We can sense very small differences in temperature.
Another thing we're good at is time, by singing we can measure time.
We can measure distance by walking.
The ethics are reasonably well understood in that it's an earth, life and human care system which aims for prosperity. There are many forms of surplus, such as time, nutrients, information and other forms of resources.
We have faced that the only thing that can repair the systems on Earth and get everything into good health is for us humans to integrate ourselves with nature. So that we are the beneficial element we are supposed to be.
We want to care for the earth, for life and for humans.
In natural ecosystems, production is a default event.
As we approach ecosystem restoration favored towards productive species in the assembly, production is a default of that activity.
With humane design and thoughtful application, humanity is a beneficial element.
So that we are in alignment with how life is happening on this planet.
It's a matter of actively observing life and what happens around us in the environment. It's a matter of finding a directive to act.
We want to create productive ecosystems, where production is a byproduct.
We are all invited to align our activity to promote prosperity as part in creation.
So, first integrate with nature and tend to your own needs, your own house, your own garden and have some of your own food supplies sorted out for yourself.
These design principles are about how we can do that anywhere and to help all humans to integrate with life in a purposeful manner. We need to get involved with the resources and the possibilities that we have available. Eventually, you can go anywhere on the planet and work in all sorts of climates, landscape profiles and landscape forms.
Everything in nature is connected to everything else. Some major elements like trees have some 500 living connections. Each function is supported by many elements and every element should serve many functions.
So this is the how we supply the needs and how we use the products of all elements included in a system. A simple way of looking at elements in a system is natural forces, water flow, plants, animals and structures. A requirement is to have the area cycle the nutrients naturally and to produce all necessary nutrition for prosperous living conditions.
The energy input for our living systems here on earth starts with the Sun and all energy eventually sinks out of systems. So we know we've got a source and a sink. In between, this energy exists in different states such as electricity, heated water, life and so on.
The purpose is to maintain and distribute the energy in the system to sustain the best living conditions. It's also about the functional relationship between the elements, because permanent agriculture is about connectivity. These connections are as important as the elements themselves. So the input is sunlight and the values are such measures as soil health, nutritional quality and availability, synergies, ease in maintenance, sustainability and stability.
The life web consists of connections and interactions between elements. When we are designing a land for human prosperity, we make these connections.
Permanent agriculture is a connecting system between disciplines, in how you connect the waste system and house to the garden and animal systems, how the water and other natural forces connect to the landscape, the connections between the elements, how everything connects over time and how to attain stability in these connections.
The connections and elements form a life web, which need to be maintained as a safety net. It's the connections that provide stability.
When we have a good enough stability, then even if half of the elements in the system fails, it will keep producing and recover.
As a comparison, a fishing net will catch fish with a majority of the strands broken and then it'll dramatically drop off, in the same way a spider web will catch flies even if much of the web is broken.
So we look at how many connections we can make to reach the required stability. It's a dynamic system since we are reaching towards living self-maintained systems that naturally provide all our needs.
This is a photo of soil on a sandy ground with high salt content, yet look at the top layer here. Life is happening here, that top layer is living soil.
Carbon translocates to the plant roots where it exudates out into the soil in order to feed microscopic life. In other words liquid carbon is going out in the soil. The organisms in the soil then feed the plant. So there is an exchange at the root surface.
This is how nature cycles nutrients.
This white foam is liquid carbon. It's carbon dioxide absorbed through photosynthesis, going into the roots and being exuded into the soil. A large part of this is consumed by microbes and some is converted to carbonic acid. This mild acid dissolves rocks and such, helping to make nutrients available to plants.
This is an air bubble in the soil with protozoa feeding on bacteria that are trapped around the air. There's more microorganisms in a teaspoonful of healthy soil than there are people on earth. When the soil is properly nurtured, the life in it cycles nutrients. We need to care for all life.
Fungus is important in the soil because mycorrhizal fungi produce the glycoprotein glomalin. This is vital in soil particle formation so that the soil will hold together.
This whole planet is ready to prosper with life and lush landscapes. All we need to do is align with creation and enjoy life in abundance.
To develop a permanent cultivation of land, as a food forest, we only need up to 30 years.
We then have a multi-layered, living system with animals, light requiring canopy trees, shade tolerant trees that give shelter to the understory, shrubs and bushes, herbaceous plants, ground cover, climbing vegetation and root crops.
When we look at aquatic systems, these are very productive.
Aquaculture is the most productive in protein per area, up to 30 times more productive than land based protein systems.
Aquaculture is also where the most soil creation potential is possible.
The whole idea is abundance with vegetables and fish. The fish are eating healthy; algae, roots of the plants and any insects larvae that come in there. Chinese Water Chestnut is an abundant, aquatic plant, that produces the highest known yield of food by weight.