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what is wrong with greenhouses?

 
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Location: Western WA,usda zone 6/7,80inches of rain,250feet elevation
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Robert:cultural dependence on industrial technologies which are dependent in manufacture on a scale outside the ability of the local community to reproduce.
 
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Canning is okay. Recycled greenhouses are okay. Cars are okay. Airplanes are okay. Computers and cell phones are okay. Residences - not sure what the qualifications for non-industrial are. Clothes - are you wearing only the clothing made from your farm production?

Importing foods is not okay. (Let me point out that cultures have been importing non-native foods and spices for centuries.)

No offense but I'm still rather lost.
 
gardener
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Still trying to get a handle on this so we're talking about the same thing, a previous post: "a reused greenhouse would escape the industrial production critique" is that industrial production different than than industrial technologies?
What is the definition of cultural dependence?
In a melting pot like my circle of friends some have religious restraints that prevent them from eating some foods and some are vegan so we each have independent cultural items we produce, harvest and eat is that what you mean by cultural dependence?
 
Robert Ray
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I think we agree on many fronts and we as a society have to move away from as Mr. Frey says where, "our tools have become our masters".
I also think that we have to clearly define our feel good phrases.
"Environmental justice" for example, who wouldn't want that? But what does it mean?
"Industrial input", who would want that in their garden? But what is it?
A constructive discussion is hampered when some of those phrases are used without clarification of what it is. When I, or anyone for that matter, uses a feel good ephemeral phrase might appear superior for a moment, the open mouth look isn't one of awe at the brilliance of the statement but one of WTF does that mean?
 
pollinator
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i see your points and i think they are good ones, yet i wish i had a big nice greenhouse =)
and a fridge! a freezer!
i suppose not having these things for a long time...well even though i see it as somewhat of a good thing i dont have a fridge or freezer, i almost have to talk myself into the benefits. because i cant store food for very long i cant stock up ice cream, insta food, other stuff i shouldnt be eating..... and it keeps me looking to my garden and eating fresh food. but then i really do wish i could stock up stuff like that, and use it to preserve foods...like being able to freeze a bunch of bberries when they re so plentiful for later in winter and spring. course i would probably also eat way too much ice cream or frozen prepared foods or stuff like that if i did have a freezer!

i feel like what you are talking about i would call the *power of limits*
and its a good thing. how many people can actually get it together enough to have and use a greenhouse, only those who are dedicated to it enough to be even thinking to build one. or those who basically have to, or feel they have to anyway because of their climate.

theres sort of a natural effect of the power of limits...and i would think its increasing...more and more people are being forced into having make choices like this...its less likely they will do it willingly?? at least most. but in other areas, in making priorities as people are having to look at this more and more...it could naturally happen that people use less and less greenhouses, and many other things that are not as sustainable. people are basically being forced into having to down size like this.

as far as greenhouses go i think it depends on what kind, how you build them, of course. someone could build a small recycled building materials greenhouse that was unheated...with a low footprint...this would be a different matter than a fancy one. theres an unheated "atrium" area, sort of like a greenhouse, here...it is allowing me to have fresh lemons this morning, so i find it hard to think this is a bad thing =)

i stretch my climate a bit and plant some interesting plants that need some fussing over. and have other gardens that are self seeding easy to grow stuff that needs little to no care. i think it s ok, at least for me and what i am trying to do with the gardens and food, to do both in the now. different gardens have different purposes, people are at different places with it, why they do it, what they want to do.

if i lived in a cold climate i think i would prioritize having a greenhouse, AND have other areas that are those hardy no maintenance plants. i dont know if you have to go to one extreme or the other, at least thats what i feel. to fuss over a small amount of plants, use some stuff like plastic pots, in a somewhat low footprint way is not quite as good as not using it from that perspective i guess....but to me in the now it feels ok.

but it doesnt have to be...huge inputs, fancy equiptment, etc...too many inputs, fertilizers or whatever else thats not being sustainably produced, thats imported stuff...it could just be the little extra warmth from an unheated greenhouse that makes it so you can grow something more interesting than kale, or foraged greens.....or whatever other hardy plants that dont need much care.

so again i think it makes a difference how you do it, i think it can be done in an ok way, but no not totally in that purist way....

i like being able to start seeds in the small greenhouse like area i have, seedlings do way better there than outside or if they get broadcast, especially with those fussier plants. and i like that there are more interesting foods i can grow than what the self seeding gardens contain, that keeps me out of the grocery store.
 
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I'm new to the entire concept of permaculture, so please forgive me if I don't have the whole picture on some of the issues, or am not familiar with the resources and experts listed in these posts.

This discussion reminds me of the "how vegan is vegan" debates that occur on veg forums. Once stance on that subject that I was impressed with was to not focus on the correctness on an individual action, but to do what would do the least amount of harm to animals in the bigger picture. So while yes, the bone char that may of may not have been used to filter sugar is not vegan, telling a brand new vegan that if they eat anything that has sugar in it that they do not know the history of then they are not a true vegan because they failed the vegan purity test (and then be sure to mention how "natural flavors," "honey," and "camera film" are forbidden as well), it drives more people away from veganism because it makes it seem too hard. So that person goes back to eating the actually body parts of animals instead of having the occasional animal byproduct that is only used because it is cheap and readily available because so many people consume animals (and likely would no longer be used if more people were encouraged to veganism).

So the point of all that, is that it's better to have a world full of moderate vegans than a world full of meat-eaters and a handful of perfect, purist vegans.

I'm only using veganism as an example, but this discussion of greenhouses seems similar to me (not a criticism, debating the finer points is how individual ideologies are worked out).

While this is not the first year I've attempted to grow food crops, this will be the first year I plan on growing the bulk of my food with almost all added foods being locally produced.

I'm in my early 30's, but I have a cognitive disorder that causes memory impairment. Every year I plant a garden and every year I kill everything before harvest. This year, however, I'm very, very excited because I've learned about ways to grow crops without watering them, and since I'll never remember to do this (or will do it so many times in one day that I drown them), this is a miraculous life changing discovery for me =D

Things like mulch, and hugel--? (the thing where tree branched are made into mounds and planted on top of), the three sisters, the pipes to collect rain, etc. are all brilliant because they don't rely on my remembering to do them (yay!). I also have a greenhouse/sunroom kit. I bought it a billion years ago because I needed a safe place for a cat that was afraid of children, but then ended up never using it. Now I plan to set it up as a temporary greenhouse and then later attaching it to a house I'm building as part of a passive solar design. It does not require caulk. The purchase was unethical on the whole industrial manufacturing front, but it was done long before I was enlightened to such issues, so I'm not going to beat myself up about it. I am comforted by the idea of using the greenhouse because it gives me leniency in planting times -- and since I'm already messing all that up, I NEED the leniency, ha ha.

Anyway, I hope this makes sense outside of my brain. The thing I'm trying to say is that while there is always room for improvement, it's very, very difficult to be perfect and all of us are going to have different areas where we accept compromise. New people are going to need an adjustment period while they work these thoughts out for themselves. Growing a fruit in a passive greenhouse is better than going to a store and buying one that was shipped from the other side of the planet. Never having a favorite fruit ever again may be too discouraging for some people, but not others.

But if someone wants to go without a greenhouse then that's great. I'm attempting to grow mostly heirloom Appalachian crops because I feel it's the right thing to do (and should be easier to keep alive here). But I will still eventually try to grow a loquat tree because it's my favorite fruit and in the center of many childhood memories, and it's been almost fifteen years since I've had one. It keeps me excited about independently growing food, which I figure is a good thing.

I don't mean any offense by this post. The discussion thus far has been filled with very knowledgeable people, and I thought a less knowledgeable take might be refreshing(? or aggravating, heh ;p )
 
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Location: the state of jefferson - zone 7
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Okay, wow, what a thread. I have to chime in a little bit. I read that quote in Sepp's book, which is rather WITHOUT context, just a caption on a picture of broken greenhouse panels, not really explaining exactly what he means, as he often doesn't!

Sepp DOES have a greenhouse. This came up in some questions he was asked at his workshop in Montana last spring. He is NOT completely ANTI-GREENHOUSE. He is PRO EXPERIMENTATION AND TRYING THINGS OUT. He uses his greenhouse for various experiments whenever he feels it's appropriate. Over all, if I interpret him correctly, he thinks that for the most part, direct mixed seeding is a more effective overall solution than all this tedious planting things in greenhouses and transplanting them out again. I believe that even in his EXTREMELY cold climate (what zone is he in, 2? 3?), he has found that direct mixed-seeding WORKS for him, since he develops his plants generation by generation to tolerate and like that. He says things like "don't pamper you're plants!".

At the workshop, it was March and we were in Montana and we were planting lots and lots of seeds into the freshly made hugels-beds. Marisha asked him directly: "There will be more frosts for certain, isn't it too early to be planting these cucumber (and other tender type) seeds?!" His answer was essentially: "plants aren't so dumb as to come up before it's time! trust nature!"

Now, I bet there is truth to both of them. SOME of those plants might come up early and die, but the ones that wait and come up a bit later and survive will be hardier, and that site will be selecting for that trait, and year after year as you plant those seeds, that will be less and less of a problem. That way, instead of the labor-intensive replanting, he can just cast his seed mix every spring fairly early. So in summary, he's not anti-greenhouse, just pro direct-seeding (IMOO).

--Joshua
 
Robert Ray
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Sepp is zone 3/4 at 4000 ft I guess Austrian zones are the same as here.
Other than cuttings from berries I don't transplant from greenhouse to outside beds.
I use tilted raised beds for solar gain as well as hugel beds. It's not like my entire production is dependent on a greenhouse just another layer of the system.
Big Ag has eliminated the wonderful diversity of heirloom seeds that were available not so long ago experimentation is what will bring them or new varieties back.
Coleman, Frey, New Alchemy Institute, all interesting examples of greenhouse use.
 
steward
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By USDA standards, Austria is split between zones 5 and 6.
From Google maps, I am guessing that he is in the colder zone 5.

As you get into these colder regions, each zone drop will basically halve the plants that can survive the winters.
Zone 5 still has a decent collection that are plausible.

AustriaZones.JPG
[Thumbnail for AustriaZones.JPG]
 
Robert Ray
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For reference I am in USDA zone 4b/5b avg. first frost Aug 21/31, avg. last frost July 1/10, just under 20 inches of rain a year.
 
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Thats a nice topic Ray! very nice quote too" There's enough food for everyone's need...." from Mahatma Gandhi. Yup, we agree that green-houses are a way of adapting and can be used as 'systems', keeping close to the holistic sense. just now, we are building one with earth and stone, it wil be mostly used for sowing special heirloom seeds and protect them during germination period from winter wind in Karst area, namely the 'bora'. Off late, changing climate mixes up the cycles, last year we had hale-storms in spring and drought in the summer
 
Robert Ray
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Garden of the sun
Fortunately we don't have a cold wind like the bora. I do occasionally get seasonal warm Santa Anna influenced winds from California. The main issue is for my area is that it is a valley that is influenced with cold air coming down at night from the mountains. There can be a 50 to 60 difference in temperatures from daytime to night time.
 
Matt Ferrall
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Joshua:thank you for clarifying Sepps position.Sounds like hes not opposed but just views greenhouses as crutches.Yes,perhaps a non judgemental stance like that would be better.
 
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Can I toss my rock into the pond? Every area has seasonality of crops. The ability to supply a market early or late in the season can make or break a permaculture produce operation. So if one uses solar green house or a green house that burns biomass to extend a growing seasons does this violate permaculture? How about heat from hot composting? Also, some plants flower at different times. Would it be wrong to use a green house to force willow buds or flowering branches to bloom for late winter market? Or let’s say one collects excess bulbs from an agroforestry system, is it wrong to force flowers for market? RAMPS require a period of heat and then cold, do I have to wait two years or can I treat the seeds? Some seedlings can grow with 20 hours of lighting. Is it ok to apply heat and artificial light to young seedlings to reduce time for next generation of plant to one year instead of two if I need them for plant breeding? If I use large rocks as solar heat collectors is it better than using recycled black pickle barrels? I am asking these questions because I am not sure where you draw the line. Is natural better if it has to be hauled thousands of miles? Where does recycled materials play its part? I understand the focus on adapting to nature instead of forcing nature to adapt to us. Just from some of the posts it becomes opinion without any clarity.
 
Matt Ferrall
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I dont think there is clear lines of right and wrong here but that doesnt mean we cant talk about what is wrong.As for making compromises for profit sake,well thats just par for the profit course.
 
alex Keenan
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I believe permaculture has patterns and anti-patterns. I just do not see anyone in the feild working with this concept. I believe one can easily develop a system of patterns and anti-patterns for permaculture.

Below are three examples of patterns being used within a branch of science. There are many, many more.

Pattern in architecture is the idea of capturing architectural design ideas as archetypal and reusable descriptions. The term "pattern" in this context is usually attributed to Christopher Alexander,[1] an Austrian born American architect. The patterns serve as an aid to design cities and buildings. The concept of having collections of "patterns", or typical samples as such, is much older. One can think of these collections as forming a pattern language, whereas the elements of this language may be combined, governed by certain rules.

In software engineering, a design pattern is a general reusable solution to a commonly occurring problem within a given context in software design. A design pattern is not a finished design that can be transformed directly into source or machine code. It is a description or template for how to solve a problem that can be used in many different situations. Patterns are formalized best practices that the programmer must implement themselves in the application.[1] Object-oriented design patterns typically show relationships and interactions between classes or objects, without specifying the final application classes or objects that are involved. Many patterns imply object-orientation or more generally mutable state, and so may not be as applicable in functional programming languages, in which data is immutable or treated as such.

landscape ecology is the science of studying and improving relationships between ecological processes in the environment and particular ecosystems. The most salient characteristics of landscape ecology are its emphasis on the relationship among pattern, process and scale and its focus on broad-scale ecological and environmental issues.
 
Matt Ferrall
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Nice post!Now,for the layman,could you use the word "greenhouse" in some sort of context so we could understand more explicitly your point.
 
alex Keenan
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“could you use the word "greenhouse" in some sort of context”

Plants grow naturally outside, so why do we need a structure to grow them in?

What is the purpose/function of a greenhouse - to provide a protective environment for crop(plant) production.
This is done by controlling environmental factors related to Lighting, Temperature, Moisture, Pest Control, and Nutrition.

So the question becomes:
1) Which systems can provide the desired environmental factors within the given environment?
2) Of these systems which are acceptable within a permaculture system?
 
Matt Ferrall
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1-one system provides/relies on a controled enviroment for success.The other provides/relies on genetics for success?
2-For better or worse,permaculture lacks standards.
 
alex Keenan
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Matt that is not fair. (Yes fair is subjective.)

1-one system provides/relies on a controled enviroment for success.The other provides/relies on genetics for success?

But you are modifying the environment. Hugelkultur modifies the hillside to allow plants to grow where they could not before. The use of rocks to capture heat modifies environmental factors to allow plants to grow where they could not. Creation of ponds provides heat sinks that allow buffered temperatures so plants can grow where they did not before. Attracting beneficial insects allows problem insect densities so plants could grow where they could not before.

I can buy into the importance of genetic selection since I breed plants and animals so I can select those best adapted to my created ecosystems.

2-For better or worse, permaculture lacks standards.

If permaculture lacks standards then why are there so many comments on subjects that are so much alike? I can make several statements about permaculture that I know are wrong in a discussion group and I can bet the farm that I can predict the response. This is because permaculture has patterns and anti-patterns. It is just that most permaculturalists do not formally recognize the patterns and anti-patterns.
 
Matt Ferrall
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true,the enviroment is modified regardless but relience mainly on enviromental control is not my ideal.Also,enviromental alteration has differences as well.A well built swale will last, potentially,for a hundred years or more.I would love to see the total waste generated over a hundred years of a greenhouse.
I guess I would like the general pattern of control over enviroment to succum to the anti pattern of acceptance of local limitations.
 
Robert Ray
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I'm finding many more permaculture books mentioning at least limited greenhouse use than a standard that suggests not using them.
 
alex Keenan
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Ok we have our first high level patterns

1. Creating an environment over reliance mainly on environmental controls.
2. One time investments in ecological feature over annual investments in environmental control.
3. Applying the concepts of lean manufacturing in the elimination of waste generated. Google Toyota Production Method or LEAN manufacturing to get details.

Anti-patterns
1. anti-pattern of acceptance of local limitations (need to define local limitations)


Would anyone like to build on this?
 
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In January I picked the last of the beets from my unheated greenhouse in Zone 5. The tops of a couple were somewhat nibbled by frost, but they were otherwise excellent. The green onions are still healthy, but I left them alone so that they give me good fat onions next summer.

Like Elliot Coleman, I cover the growing beds with layers of plastic sheets, and I use that protection to keep the Fall vegetables from being killed by frost. That way I can harvest them as I want to.

What is the downside? While the frame is home made, the plastic is bought. That includes the plastic that covers the greenhouse. To be honest with you, the vegetables that I grow int he greenhouse are worth less than the vegetables that I grow in it!

Then again, In zone 5 the winters are 6 months long. Since plants need a few weeks from seed to table, that means that the harvesting season is 4 months long: with the greenhouse I can harvest at least a little for an additional 4 months or so.

Again, economically it does not pan out. Emotionally, though.... to harvest for 8 months instead of 4? AWESOME!!!

 
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I must say, I am more than a little shocked by this entire thread. I am in the first couple of seasons of building up my permaculture garden. Our winters are so extreme, and our growing season so short, that it would take me several more Springs to establish my garden if I didn't have a greenhouse to harden off plants. I lost several berry bushes and a fruit tree last year, in part because of the short season. My plants are all regional. My greenhouse is all recycled windows and wood and I hope to have a rocket stove heating it soon enough.
 
Matt Ferrall
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Ed-sounds like your using a 'training wheels' approach to get hardy plants off to a quick start.As well, you have a salvaged greenhouse.I would think that to be appropriate use.
 
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Location: Zone 7a
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Matt Ferrall wrote:Limitations give us definition.I like to limit my industrial inputs.This forces me to adapt and be creative in my approach."Neccesity can be the mother of invention"even when self imposed.The natural limitations of my environment give me cultural definition.By attempting to circumvent these limitations through technological means(greenhouse),I miss an opertunity to explore other unique possibilites of food production and storage.Part of our celebration of place is an acceptence of the environmental conditions around us and our creative adaption to those conditions.The idea that we should be eating in a certain way regardless of our surroundings is largly responsible for much of the unsustainable practices in agriculture.



My limitations and environmental conditions would mean that the bunnies, deer and ground hogs will eat everything before I can in the city. My small no electricity green house will provide a protection from my garden predators and give me some greens in winter.

Would a creative adaptation be to eat the wildlife instead of the greens?
 
Matt Ferrall
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Definately!Rather than arming our defenses against the elements,the problem is the solution.Personally,Ive invested plenty of time in attracting herbavores to my place.Really though,some balance has to exist between nature and human needs.These should not be in opposition/a duality but they become that when we seek to arm ourselves against nature or attempt greater levels of control.Its like we are choosing to alienate ourselves from nature and I see the greenhouse as a symbolic and very real representation of that division.
 
Nechda Chekanov
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Matt Ferrall wrote:Definately!Rather than arming our defenses against the elements,the problem is the solution.Personally,Ive invested plenty of time in attracting herbavores to my place.Really though,some balance has to exist between nature and human needs.These should not be in opposition/a duality but they become that when we seek to arm ourselves against nature or attempt greater levels of control.Its like we are choosing to alienate ourselves from nature and I see the greenhouse as a symbolic and very real representation of that division.



Hm, while I am quite willing to eat the herbivores... I don't see how using a greenhouse that uses only the sun for heating alienates me from nature. I think if anything it provides a connection through difficult times, bits of green things give hope. Green things that have been destroyed makes me sad. I think it sets an unnecessary limit and creates a hard and fast rule instead of following a principle of stewarding well. I see permaculture as a life of good interdependent stewardship.

How is it different than to use plastic bags to root cuttings indoors (to hold moisture and heat)? It is using the very same concept of the greenhouse but in a much smaller scale.

To live by rules we must constantly be making reasons and exceptions. To live by principle we are restrained only by the wisdom of stewardship.
 
Matt Ferrall
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Right.I dont know that definative rules will ever exist.Reality is,after all,what a person can get away with.Rules can be used as a tool however.A way to challenge ourselves.Priciples dont have a standard to compare with.In an enviroment saturated with cheap energy and global products touted as solutions,it takes some sort of personal standard to maintain a cultural connection to a particular place.
 
Robert Ray
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What is a cultural connection? What culture are we emulating? Are you promoting some as yet undefined culture?
 
Matt Ferrall
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A unique cultural activity that only people in a certain area practice.So while a global culture would have everyone eating tomatoes regardless of how elaborate their space ship/greenhouse has to be to achieve those results.A more localized cultural connection would be growing and prosessing a food that does well where you live.
 
Robert Ray
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For that answer a thumbs up. Localized being the key as to why a low impact greenhouse might be an acceptable ( cultural) use in areas with a challenging climate. Since I often see last frost into July and first frost can be as early as late August. My particular localized culture needs a bit of a boost.,
 
Nechda Chekanov
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Matt Ferrall wrote:A unique cultural activity that only people in a certain area practice.So while a global culture would have everyone eating tomatoes regardless of how elaborate their space ship/greenhouse has to be to achieve those results.A more localized cultural connection would be growing and prosessing a food that does well where you live.


And in Alaska then one can only eat whale, seal oil and any dried fish or caribou, moose meat plus some occasional berries in spring and wild plants in summer.
Which would deal with the massive obesity and diabetis problems, but would exclude all vegetarians from the entire state.
Hm....
 
Terri Matthews
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A slight amendment to my earlier post: I MEANT to say that the plastic skin of the greenhouse was more expensive than the worth of the vegetables that I grow it it.

I still enjoy harvesting for 8 months instead of 4!!!
 
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Nechda Chekanov wrote:

Matt Ferrall wrote:A unique cultural activity that only people in a certain area practice.So while a global culture would have everyone eating tomatoes regardless of how elaborate their space ship/greenhouse has to be to achieve those results.A more localized cultural connection would be growing and prosessing a food that does well where you live.


And in Alaska then one can only eat whale, seal oil and any dried fish or caribou, moose meat plus some occasional berries in spring and wild plants in summer.
Which would deal with the massive obesity and diabetis problems, but would exclude all vegetarians from the entire state.
Hm....



Uh, the whole state isn't snow and ice; there are plenty of vegetables that will thrive lots of places here even without a greenhouse (although one can be helpful). And unless one is an aboriginal Alaskan, obtaining marine mammal calories will most likely be illegal.
 
Nechda Chekanov
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Victor Johanson wrote:

Nechda Chekanov wrote:

Matt Ferrall wrote:A unique cultural activity that only people in a certain area practice.So while a global culture would have everyone eating tomatoes regardless of how elaborate their space ship/greenhouse has to be to achieve those results.A more localized cultural connection would be growing and prosessing a food that does well where you live.


And in Alaska then one can only eat whale, seal oil and any dried fish or caribou, moose meat plus some occasional berries in spring and wild plants in summer.
Which would deal with the massive obesity and diabetis problems, but would exclude all vegetarians from the entire state.
Hm....



Uh, the whole state isn't snow and ice; there are plenty of vegetables that will thrive lots of places here even without a greenhouse (although one can be helpful). And unless one is an aboriginal Alaskan, obtaining marine mammal calories will most likely be illegal.



Oh, are you in Alaska? I lived there for 3 years in in bush village south west of anchorage. We were not even as cold as its got, and you could not have grown a thing to eat in the winter outside.
My point is made... If we only a native diet, consistent with the cultural environment, (it is legal for Alaskan natives to subsistence hunt marine mammals) then we would be 1. Native 2. Non vegetarians. And 3. Only eating most vegetables for a very short though intense growing season.

It is too heavy of a requirement to make 'cultural' food rules.
Again, principles will mean that wisdom is our guide, not rules - which will keep our tables empty and bellies growling.
 
alex Keenan
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"And in Alaska then one can only eat whale, seal oil and any dried fish or caribou, moose meat plus some occasional berries in spring and wild plants in summer.
Which would deal with the massive obesity and diabetis problems, but would exclude all vegetarians from the entire state."

I lived in Alaska for a long time. Obesity and diabetis became a major problem when the diet changed to Western processed foods!!!

My grandpa's friends were native and you did not see alot of obesity. In fact you did not see alot of fat people period!!!
My generation the baby boomers were able to eat the western processed foods because of improvements in logistics that made it available and affordable.
Many of us became the obese and developed health problems related to it.

 
Matt Ferrall
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Its not that vegetables couldnt be eaten year round,just that they would have to be fermented or dried.The diet would not be limited to native plants as the global economy had spread genetics around the globe.In fact,its the availability of plants from elsewhere that provides more options and ensures we do not have to go back to any previous culture.This added diversity has the potential to provide the novelty we seek currently by using greenhouses.I would recomend people to spend their time and money introducing plants that do good naturaly rather than equiptment to grow ill adapted plants.
 
Nechda Chekanov
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alex Keenan wrote:
"And in Alaska then one can only eat whale, seal oil and any dried fish or caribou, moose meat plus some occasional berries in spring and wild plants in summer.
Which would deal with the massive obesity and diabetis problems, but would exclude all vegetarians from the entire state."

I lived in Alaska for a long time. Obesity and diabetis became a major problem when the diet changed to Western processed foods!!!

My grandpa's friends were native and you did not see alot of obesity. In fact you did not see alot of fat people period!!!
My generation the baby boomers were able to eat the western processed foods because of improvements in logistics that made it available and affordable.
Many of us became the obese and developed health problems related to it.


Yes, like I said, going back to native foods would solve the obesity problem.
I'm just not sure how realistic it is for all people...



 
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