Shawn Harper

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since Mar 01, 2012
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forest garden fungi foraging
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Recent posts by Shawn Harper

I always feed mine to my mushroom beds, sometimes i soak them for a day. They won't keep a bed fed for me by themselves but they do help cut down the amount of chips i need to add.
4 months ago

Nicole Alderman wrote:Think about it from a certifier's viewpoint. If you're looking at a picture of something that has already been done, without any pictures of it being done, how do you tell that person did it? For all the certifier can tell, their spouse or friend or hired person (or a previous owner of the land), could have done it. We want to make as sure as we can that the person who's got a badge, actually has those skills.

Say someone tries to hire someone who has a roundwood working badge, or an animal care badge. But, they "earned" it just by just showing pictures of things already done. They never actually did any of the work. So, they come to work and actually know nothing and end up building a bad shelter and feeding your animals the wrong things and not keeping their house sanitary. That'd be horrible!

Now, of course, the lower level of skills aren't usually what you'd hire someone for. They're basic skills that show that someone can learn stuff. Say you might want to hire someone with an Wood badge in rocket stoves to make you one. Or maybe a Iron badge in natural building to make you a wofati. And, we went and certified a person that said, "hey, I made this wofati and it's rocket mass heater!" But, they never showed progress pictures, and it turns out, their X-wife did all the work, and they know nothing.

This is something every certifying agency has to deal with. Right now, my husband has a coworker that is a phlebotomist (the people who draw your blood), but it's apparent the person knows NOTHING about phlebotomy. Their wife probably took all the tests for them. When asked to take a test at work, the person stormed out, refusing to do so.

We're trying really hard to make sure that:
(1) The documenting requirements aren't TOO complicated
(2) The people who are getting certified have a high chance of actually having done the stuff and know what they say they know
(3) It's easy for someone who's looking at hiring or giving their land to a badge earner to look at their pictures and judge for themselves the quality of the persons work
(4) To have an online resource full of pictures of people doing useful things, so others can learn from what they did.

I don't like videos, either. But, sometimes, a video seems like the only way to prove that someone has done it. And, it helps other people online learn and find out about permies. We're building a vast collection of knowledge that is FREE and available to everyone.  None of us are getting paid to certify. And when someone tries to get something certified that doesn't have documenting proof, that makes it really hard on the certifiers. We don't want to accidentally certify someone who never did a lick of work and has not one ounce of knowledge about a subject!

This is easily the best explanation I've seen on this. I can easily understand your reasons. However I think that "We're trying really hard to make sure that: (1) The documenting requirements aren't TOO complicated" Needs some work. Maybe a thread with exact documentation expectations instead of several sometimes contradictory posts?
The other point I would make is not everyone has so much land that simply doing a project again will work.
4 months ago

r ranson wrote: You can use past projects so long as you have the images to meet the requirements.

Is there a good list of what those are? I skimmed through the topics and couldn't find what would and would not count as good enough.

r ranson wrote:So do I.  But I know a lot of people who have no idea how to make their phones take stills.

I only saw one badge that had video requirements.  Are there a lot of them?  The ones I saw had video OR photos or said: "show XYZ" which could be either video or photos.  

After reading more than this topic it looks like photos will work(?) I guess this part could be changed to a request for clearer requirements.

r ranson wrote: On the whole, it sounds like you want something different than what Paul's created.  Perhaps you could make PES - Permaculture Experience according to SHAWN.

I've seen a similar response to several others who posted suggestions. I guess I don't see what about my comment caused this canned response? I don't see a reason why in my reason I would need to deviate from pauls. However if this is a thing and not just a paul thing (hence the badges) I think it should be more inclusive. Things like this are great for motivating people to get out and create content. However it also runs the risk of alienating part of the user base if they feel left out in the cold. Just food for thought.

4 months ago
I feel like the food prep from the gardening badge belongs to this one.
4 months ago
Some constructive criticism.The lack of being able to use past projects, makes this really irrelevant to me and probably many others. The video requirement also is lame! I shoot exclusively photos. Most find my voice annoying. Is there some reason why only video works? Managing a video camera while soloing a project sucks!
4 months ago
My uncle planted my nemesis apple tree with a chunk of log and a single small branch. I didn’t argue them putting it between two raised beds because I thought it would not work. It does.
4 months ago
Saturday market if you have a weekend free.
4 months ago
I'm in and either day works fine for me.
4 months ago

Joseph Lofthouse wrote:

Has any descendent of colonists successfully planted a 3 sisters garden?

I guess this is where I chime in. I have had mixed success. To put it simply it’s never completely failed me. I even had one great year where I harvested way more than should be possible in the square footage! Unfortunately I have no pictures, but hope to document next years growing.

There are a few tricks to three sisters and I’m not certain it would work for everyone or anyone with subpar genetics. The first trick is only winter storage varieties. You want to harvest all three at the same time. The second trick is a very hardy and fast growing/slow maturing corn. It must be planted about a month before beans or squash.

Cons: you have to plant dense and it’s slow to take apart at seasons end.
5 months ago