Coffee is an incredible plant. It is a shade tolerant bush that lives for many years, producing a small red fruit whose seed is roasted, brewed, and enjoyed all over the world. Guatemala produces over 200 million kilos of coffee for export each year, and it is a major cash crop in most of the rural highlands of the country. Aside from that, Guatemala also suffers from chronic malnutrition. According to the World Food Programme, one in five children in Guatemala experiences stunting due to malnutrition. A while back, I began to wonder if there was some connection between the rise of coffee production and malnutrition in Guatemala.
Today we're hearing from Neal. Many of you who have been to the farm in the past several years know Neal from his role as Volunteer Manager and Permaculture Course Facilitator, but you may not know that recently he and his partners have founded their own Permaculture-based homestead and regenerative design consultation firm, Abundant Edge.
Today, we've taken a trip to the city of Quetzaltenango, also known as Xela ("shay-la"). It's an amazing place to visit, with tons of culture, amazing food, amazing markets, and lots of cool permaculture stuff going on. We're going to catch up with my friend Juan Pablo, who has a market garden here in Xela, we'll make some ginger beer, and I'll review Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz.
There are lots of different designs and schools of thought about how to house chickens, such as free-range or rotational yards. We've tried a few methods over the years, and found that deep-bedding composting chicken houses are the best system for us. Imagine: on only 2 x 2 meters you can keep 8 hens and produce over 2000 eggs and over 5 m³ of compost every year! Check out the video and blog post below for the inside scoop on chicken houses:
Greetings! Today we'll take a look at how to use this Ukrainian cream separator. If you're dealing with goats and decide you want to make cream or butter you'll find this common model of cream separator on Amazon. It's good quality and a great price, around $130. The only problem? All my directions came in Ukrainian! It comes with a whole lot of pieces to assemble and it took me awhile to figure out, so I'll share it here in hopes that it may speed up the process for some of you.
Today I'll be sharing a closer look at plant division, with bananas, Everybody knows that bananas don't really have seeds. If you've seen them growing you'll know that they're also not woody and upright, but there are a lot of baby bananas growing around it. So we'll lift one out and take it over to our propagation station!