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Episode three of the Permaculture Smackdown continues with Paul and six of his patrons – Katie, Kyle, Elliot, Julia Winter, Opalyn et al. to review up to page 16 of Sepp Holzer’s Desert or Paradise.

Chapter 1 - Reading Nature - continued:
What is purple?  Everyone is purple to some degree or another, so when standing next to two people, one could look dayglow purple to one and rock-brown to the other and what is seen as purple can change over time.  Paul’s view is that purple refers to an idea or practice that doesn’t make complete logical sense, but is liked anyway.  Neither purple nor anti-purple are “bad guys”.

“I began reading a book by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren and one by Masanobu Fukuoka, and found a lot of similarities in all three methods, eventually renaming my methods to Holzer’s permaculture”

“[…] I had observed that plants take on different colours depending on the species of other plants growing next to them […] my explanation for this is that through the continuous decay of the roots (and leaves) nutrients are released into the soil and are then passed on to other plants […]” Sepp tends to differentiate himself from most other permies by effectively demanding that heavy machinery be used in permaculture as they were used to make the problems, so they be used to fix them.  Although he states that a shovel won’t work, it probably would if you had some ancient Egyptian pyramid builders (and Mike Oehler made the first $50 with a shovel, so yeah).

“Humanity has spent generations on land consolidation, deforestation, regulating rivers, and draining and building canals and culverts.  We can not expect to undo this with a spade – big steps are asked for here” As before, this isn’t absolutely true – just get enough people together to work on it for long enough.  All that said, Paul does own an excavator.

“Holzer’s permaculture is creating landscapes while thinking ahead for generations.  Above all, Holzer’s permaculture means creating a hydrological balance, is a symbiotic agriculture in harmony with nature in cycles and all inclusive.”

Relevant Threads

Desert or Paradise thread
Desert or Paradise documentary by Sepp Holzer

Sepp Holzer forum

Sepp Holzer's 3-in-1 Permaculture documentaries (Farming, Terraces, and Aquaculture)

The $50 and Up Underground House Book by Mike Oehler

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This podcast was made possible thanks to:

Dr. Hugh Gill Kultur
Eivind W. Bjørkavåg
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Bill Crim
Kerry JustTooLazy
Jocelyn Campbell
Wade Luger
Kyle Neath
Chris Sugg
Bill Erickson
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Julia Winter, world's slowest mosaic artist
G Cooper
Penny McLoughlin
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Mehron Kugler
Lisa Goodspeed
Pasquale DeAngelis
Sean Benedict
Greg Martin
Rita Bliden
Dana Martin
Candace Dahlk
Keith Kuhnsman
Eric Tolbert
Ruwan Nanayakkara
Polly Jayne Smyth
Collection of 14 Permaculture/Homesteading Cheat-Sheets, Worksheets, and Guides
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