What is permaculture?
The term permaculture is derived from “permanent agriculture”. Permaculture is a system entirely dedicated to sustainable development. The general goal of permaculture is to permanently secure the livelihoods of people: ecologically – socially – economically.
Specifically, healthy and energy-efficient living, learning and working spaces are aimed for. In the implementation, old and new methods, techniques and experiential knowledge from different cultures are adapted to local conditions.
How is permaculture different from organic?
Permaculture – the difference from organic.
As is largely the case with organic cultivation, permaculture does not use 100 percent synthetic chemical pesticides and fertilizers or genetically modified material. Permaculture uses only organic supplemental fertilizers or mulch, which conserve soil and water. Above all, the soil should be kept as natural as possible in permaculture. Microbes and other microorganisms in the natural humus layer of the soil ensure that the soil remains fertile. This in turn guarantees that the fruit and vegetables grown in this way are full of vitamins and minerals.
In general, the approach is based exclusively on the natural ecosystem and near-natural cycles. For example, permaculture growers cultivate their vegetables in mixed cultures, which means that different plants provide each other with the different nutrients they need, and they also undertake to use water as sparingly as possible.
Another difference between permaculture products and organic products is that the fruits and vegetables are even more different from the standard sizes of fruits we are used to nowadays, because they grow even more naturally than pure organic products. Also, permaculture products are offered only at their actual harvest time and they bear seeds that themselves produce fruit-bearing plants again – they consequently have seed-proof seeds, unlike the hybrid seeds of the agricultural industry. Unlike organic, permaculture guidelines also say there should be no long transport distances. According to permaculture supporters, organic potatoes from Egypt and organic apples from New Zealand that end up in stores here are just a sign that organic does not mean a complete departure from industrial food production.
Why are trees so important?
Trees provide us with oxygen, which we – and all other living things – need to survive. You can use trees not only to improve air quality, but also to change the temperature on their site and even to keep a house cool in the summer. Trees can also be used as windbreaks for vulnerable plants, to improve soil structure, and to prevent evaporation from a pond or pool.
Trees can even increase the amount of rainfall on a property. And of course, trees can provide us with all sorts of delicious food.