Permies Converge in NORTHERN Alberta!

We did it! Our team at ACIL pulled off the Northern Alberta Permaculture Convergence. See photos below. At our busiest, I would estimate we had about 75 attendees. This convergence demonstrated the diversity in the Albertan permaculture movement by having a very distinct vibe from the convergence that happened in the South earlier this year….

NAPC Schedule and a Case for Learning Close to Home

First things first! The final Northern Alberta Permaculture Convergence schedule is live and can be seen below at the bottom of this post!¬† I’m really excited for our lineup of workshops. One of the many things that make this Convergence special is our line-up of social permaculture workshops. Social permaculture is a more recent, and…

One Year of Dog Ownership

Today is Jupiter’s first “got-me” day! I have officially been a dog owner (dog stealer? dog picker-off-the-streeter?) for one year. It has been quite the journey and I look forward to many more happy years, new adventures, and improved dog training and raising skills as I slowly figure out what I’m doing. It’s been quite…

Alberta Open Farm Days: YYC Growers Tour

This weekend is Open Farm Days in Alberta, where farmers welcome anyone interested into their farms to see how food is grown locally. I was enlisted by one of my research farms, Leaf & Lyre, to help out with the YYC Growers and Distributors tour. It was a hoot! Not worry, I live tweeted and…

Upside-down Tomato Update: Meh

(For all of my email followers, apologies for the premature posting of this update.) Nearly two months ago I posted this post about the crazy tomatoes I planted at the homestead. So far I’ve only lost one tomato plant early in the experiment. Everything is alive and there are tomatoes ripening on the plants, but…

Permies Converge in Southern Alberta!

I just returned from my first permaculture convergence in Turner Valley in Southern Alberta! A “convergence” is a conference with workshops surrounding different permaculture topics, tours of permaculture sites and other permacultural activities. I find “conference” is too sterile a word to describe a permie gathering.¬† There was an emphasis on the sharing of food,…

What?! Flying Upside-Down Tomatoes?

Permies try some pretty odd things to get as many yields as possible out of their gardens. I had too many tomato starts and too little garden space, so I thought I would try out one of the more eccentric permaculture ideas out there: upside-down hanging tomatoes. Supposedly, this not only saves space, but also…

What is Permacutlure? Revisited

On this blog I’ve presented a simple definition of permaculture and tried to unpack what constitutes¬† “real” permaculture and even questioned the very sustainability of permaculture. In my recent research survey of individuals practicing alternative agriculture in Western Canada (find posts analyzing the results here and here) I asked: ‘How do you personally define “permaculture”?’…

The Results Are IN [Part 2]

Preliminary Research Survey Selected Results Last month I posted a blog reporting results of the preliminary survey for my ongoing research. I asked alternative agriculture practitioners in Western Canada to complete a survey online and the number of responses exceeded my expectations. My first report looked at the organizational structures and administration of respondents that…

The Results Are IN!

Preliminary Research Survey Selected Results For the past two months I have been asking alternative agriculture practitioners in Western Canada to complete this survey online for my ongoing Fulbright research. I have been wonderfully overwhelmed with responses achieving nearly 4x the number of submissions I expected. If this is the first you are hearing of…

Is Permaculture Sustainable? (Class Presentation)

Here is the brief presentation (with some minor revisions) I gave yesterday in the University of Alberta “Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture” class. The assignment was to choose an agriculture system or strategy and discuss if it is sustainable. I used the presentation as an opportunity to share my research and also share a very simplified version…