Anyone can produce a plentiful harvest with a similarly small plot of raised beds growing a wide variety of simple food plants that are adapted to many conditions.
By working with – not against – nature, and diversifying our farms, landscapes, fishing waters and the foods we eat, agroecology supports biodiversity, contributes to the majority of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and promotes resilience. All while supporting livelihoods and some of the healthier diets on the planet.
As we cannot now afford to take vast tracts of land out of production due to the high and growing global population, the only viable option has to be to farm all land in harmony with wildlife and preserve what little wilderness is left.
Weeds. A very negative-sounding word for many. However, weeds might not exactly be what we used to think they are. Let me take you on a walk in the countryside, observing fields of barley as we pass them by.
I have the feeling that we are on the threshold of a transition to more sustainable practice which, if it could be made economically viable, could quite quickly become mainstream.
The joy of being immersed in a meadow – surrounded by the fluttering of butterflies, the chirping of crickets and the buzz of bees – is increasingly rare. Without urgent action to tackle dwindling biodiversity, these memories will disappear.
Revitalizing the practice of seed saving is vital for the world’s collective food security. Conservation techniques, such as the creation of seed banks and seed exchanges among farmers, gardeners, and even nations, play an important role in not only preserving ancient, heirloom varieties of important food crops, but also in mitigating against the increasing risks of pests, diseases, and climate change.
Healthy land needs diversity. Have you ever seen a patch of wild nature occupied by just one species?
A species of bee declared extinct in the UK almost 30 years ago is flying again – thanks in part to the efforts of farmers.
A small but persistent sustainability movement has been slowly growing and I was delighted to find a budding food movement working against the odds to retain their rich agricultural heritage.
In the Gascony region of Southwest France, famously home to the Bordeaux grape, farmland biodiversity may be higher than what’s found in any other agricultural region of Europe…