Permablitzing Our Way to Community

By Mark Juedeman, Shawn McFarland

Transition Houston had its origins in a permaculture class offered by the Permaculture Guild of Houston and Urban Harvest in 2007-2008. Mark Juedeman, a member of the class, had discovered the Transition movement online. He was so excited when Rob Hopkins’ The Transition Handbook was published that he bought a number of copies and gave them away to others he thought might be interested. Shawn McFarland, a teacher in the class, also purchased a copy and was likewise smitten. Mark’s design project for his Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) was to organize Transition Houston. The first organizational meeting was held in March of 2008, and Transition Houston became an official Transition Initiative in September 2009. Several action groups formed early on, with one of the most successful being the Permablitz group. Marybeth Seligmann, another member of the permaculture class, took on organizing permablitzes as her PDC project, mentored by Shawn. Permablitzes grabbed the...

agroforestry in valley

Letter From The Farm: Realism And Planning For Utopia

By Chiara Garini, ARC2020

Ed. note: This article first appeared on ARC2020 is a platform for agri-food and rural actors working towards better food, farming, and rural policies for Europe. This is part of a series of Letters from the Farm. Read more letters from Chiara's farm here. **** We are back on Chiara Garini’s forest farm at the foot of the Italian Alps. Three years in, her mushroom farm and forest garden is at a crossroads: should she expand or diversify? In any case Chiara is determined to bring utopia into her business plan, and tells us about an exciting new development on the farm… Temperatures today are again close to zero. But the snow in the last days has finally started to melt after weeks pretty much spent in an unusual peace, with lots of snow and inevitably limited social interactions. Leaving aside the moments of loneliness and concerns due to the...