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RE: [fukuoka_farming] fukuoka's agronomical reform

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  • souscayrous
    Gloria, I doubt any of us are scientists on this list (lapsed, disabused, or just plain sick of technology s machines and contrivances, perhaps - as Fukuoka
    Message 1 of 10 , Dec 3, 2001
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      Gloria, I doubt any of us are scientists on this list (lapsed, disabused, or
      just plain sick of technology's machines and contrivances, perhaps - as
      Fukuoka himself) and, anyway, all communication is rhetoric; yes, even
      science.
      Open-pollination is a necessity for natural farming, it could hardly be
      otherwise. I would buy my seed from Burpees if need be, but rather an
      organic grower or non-profit seedbank. We must learn to begin with what we
      have and then grow an alternative. If I could find another natural farmer
      then I would know I was directly supporting this movement.
      I would also like to do away with grafting trees onto rootstocks, however,
      as this discussion is showing this is not necessarily as easy as scattering
      apple seed (or any fruit or nut seed?). Any thoughts on how to establish a
      viable and vital (economically and healthy - the fruit must be of a quality
      to sell) diverse fruit and nut orchard without using F1 hybrids or
      rootstocks?

      Thanks

      Souscayrous


      -----Original Message-----
      From: GLORIA BAIKAUSKAS [mailto:gcb49@...]
      Sent: Monday, December 03, 2001 4:04 AM
      To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] fukuoka's agronomical reform

      Of course we (nor he) would want to order them from Burpee. My point is
      that some plants like the apple have difficulties. In the old days when an
      orchard was planted from seed the farmer knew that he would be lucky if he
      got even one tree that would produce apples of the right sugar content and
      taste for eating. The rest would be good only for cider which could then
      have its taste manipulated with things like sugar added to the mash to
      produce something drinkable. I don't know all the plant genetics involved
      in getting the "right" apple. My point is that in providing seeds in this
      fashion one could not depend perhaps on a quantity of edible plant
      production in some vegetable and fruit types. In this way agronomy would
      become a bit of an iffy proposition at least in the beginning. Perhaps in
      time we would see better vegetable and fruit production in these types of
      plants with a better fruit to boot. But if people were depending on us for
      their daily bread (sic), then they wou
      ld possibly be sorely in need indeed. It would have to be factored in with
      hybrid plants and grafted trees for at least a time.

      I honestly believe that Nature would take over in time. I think we would
      regain strains we had possibly nearly lost with present agronomy methods in
      use. Think of what we have lost because man played with Nature to his own
      fancy! Remember carrots were not always orange. Man made them orange. Yet
      find a child today who would eat a white or yellow carrot. Maybe in doing
      all of this we would also regain the nutrition not present in today's food
      chain.

      I am not a scientist, so this is all rhetoric. I think we are all in charge
      of the research, though. Call us what you may.

      Gloria


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    • Rex Teague
      On 3 Dec 01, souscayrous wrote: --8
      Message 2 of 10 , Dec 3, 2001
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        On 3 Dec 01, souscayrous wrote:

        --8<---

        > I would also like to do away with grafting trees onto rootstocks,
        > however, as this discussion is showing this is not necessarily as
        > easy as scattering apple seed (or any fruit or nut seed?). Any
        > thoughts on how to establish a viable and vital (economically and
        > healthy - the fruit must be of a quality to sell) diverse fruit and
        > nut orchard without using F1 hybrids or rootstocks?

        Some clues at http://members.tripod.co.uk/orft. There was a
        discussion of potential difficulties on the <alt.permaculture>
        newsgroup... do a Google hunt, I can't remember the details. Phil
        Corbett of the above website participates there and is an obliging
        chap... contact him. 8<)

        Cheers... Rex
      • GLORIA BAIKAUSKAS
        I have no idea re apples. From what I have read you get what you get by planting seeds.....or you go with grafting the varieties you wish on rootstocks. I
        Message 3 of 10 , Dec 3, 2001
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          I have no idea re apples. From what I have read you get what you get by planting seeds.....or you go with grafting the varieties you wish on rootstocks. I suppose one alternative would be as is done by Seeds of Change in New Mexico in trying to bring back old apples from even the 1700s......maybe one is from the 1600s in Europe. They sell out fast, and I have not been able to obtain one as of yet. I will keep trying. By bringing back the older varieties to larger numbers perhaps the genetic strains available for natural pollination would bring about more variety in the product trees of the seeds? I am guessing here. I wish I were more highly educated in apple genetics. I had only begun investigating this when all of this came up.

          Growing apples in Texas is not an easy task. I try to stick to native varieties in most of my selections even hoping for volunteers to sprout on my 3 acres. It is I suppose why I used the apple as an example here.

          When I compost I sheet compost directly from my kitchen. In this way I often (luckily) get volunteer plants of unknown genetics. Fukuoka says the best will survive.

          I also go about different areas plucking seeds from the trees, etc., to use with seedballs on my land to see what I will get from it all. I am new at all of this. I joined this list to learn. I found out that what I was attempting on my own was similar to Mr. Fukuoka's principles. I had reported success with my experimental way of not arranging my newly reclaimed beds. By reclaimed I mean soil that I had to reclaim as it was basically dead. I had spent some years (about 4), allowing the soil to naturally come back after gross overchemicalization by farming for nearly 100 years, as well as composting, adding compost and natural amendments to a certain extent. Then I began planting things all together. As time went on the things in the wrong place, etc, died out, and the things that were happy were they were made amazing healthy spurts of growth. Native grasses are coming back in the back acre which is a slight hill now, as well as native plants that I did not plant. Probably birds, etc. did the deed. I had not planned anything for back there as yet. The land there has come back on its own totally. It is so exciting for me to watch it.

          I will most likely try seedballs up there eventually. I am not sure right now. I kind of like the way it is progressing on its own......and with the birds' or other critters help.

          My efforts at soil rebuilding have involved small areas at a time. Yet the land and Nature seem to have their own ideas, too. Mr. Fukuoka's ideas made sense to me immediately. I am learning now, but I know it will take time. I do not till. I just plant into what is there and see what happens as if it were all a great experiment.

          So, I am not one to comment in any large way anymore than I already have re how to obtain viable marketable crops naturally other than to say that because plant genetics differ it will be necessary to amend the processes in some categories. I do believe that having more genetic stock that has had less tampering will benefit it all, though.

          Gloria
          Texas
          USA


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