This video is Part 6 of a series. The series playlist can be found, here:

Questions overview and key takeaways: Below are: 1) a summary of the topics addressed by each question, and a timestamp; 2) Below each question summary are key takeaways from Geoff’s answer.

Q1: Creating an emergency food supply garden in scratch in poverty-stricken areas 0:16

We work in refugee camps in Jordan, and we put in wicking beds made out of repurposed IBC totes. They are instant, extremely water-efficient garden beds. The same system can be used to build worm farms and for reed bed water filtering. Greywater can be filtered through a reed bed, fed on to the worm farm, until finally fertigating the wicking beds.

Q2: Thoughts on converting 5500 sq. meters of pine-oak forest to permaculture food forest 1:50

If there is a canopy forest already shading the ground, you won’t get much production. In acid mulch, you can grow strawberries and blueberries. You need to decide whether you are cutting some of it down, or you can pollard some of the oak. You’ll need to cut on the sun side of things, and you should still look for species that can tolerate some shade. The oak logs can be used for mushroom production.

Q3: What to do with creosote bushes 4:10

Creosote bushes grow in desert flumes and can live to a great age. They are allelopathic, but they do pick up lots of organic matter during rain and wind events. To get rid of them, they can be cut down at ground level and kept low there until they die. The allelopathic material should then be cut up, piled up, and kept damp. When ear mushrooms start growing around it, the allelopathy is broken, and it can be composted.

Q4: Using green wood chips to grow 6:45

This can’t happen. You have to go through a complex process to break it down. You should add lots of fresh green material and manure to get it decomposing. Combine it in thirds: manure, green, and wood chips. Let that pile sit for a week. Then turn it Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for the following three weeks, and that’ll make compost you can use.

Q5: Killing bracken fern by covering with a tarp 8:35

You can, but bracken fern is indicating that there is a lack of potassium, likely from burning. If you continually cut it and mulch it, it will gradually thin out as the soil becomes healthy again.

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About Geoff:

Geoff is a world-renowned permaculture consultant, designer, and teacher. He has established permaculture demonstration sites that function as education centers in all the world’s extreme climates — information on the success of these systems is networked through the Permaculture Research Institute and the website.

About Permaculture:

Permaculture integrates land, resources, people and the environment through mutually beneficial synergies – imitating the no waste, closed-loop systems seen in diverse natural systems. Permaculture applies holistic solutions that are applicable in rural and urban contexts and at any scale. It is a multidisciplinary toolbox including agriculture, water harvesting and hydrology, energy, natural building, forestry, waste management, animal systems, aquaculture, appropriate technology, economics, and community development.

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