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Re: [fukuoka_farming] The Gap Between Seedball Promise and Performance

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  • burt levy
    Every time that I ve made seedballs, they ve always sprouted within 3-4 days. I ve made seedballs with vegetables, herbs, clover, and native plants and trees.
    Message 1 of 8 , Oct 1, 2002
      Every time that I've made seedballs, they've always
      sprouted within 3-4 days. I've made seedballs with
      vegetables, herbs, clover, and native plants and
      trees. Once they get watered they have always sprouted
      very well for me.
      --- Larry Haftl <larry@...> wrote:
      > Emilia wrote:
      > >to me: nat.ag is not only how one sows but the most
      > important element
      > is how
      > >the soil is kept so that his wild dynamic is
      > maintained in spite of
      > >manipulation: sprouting & growing annual/biennal
      > vegetables is totally
      > >different than growing cereals or bushes or trees:
      > may u all experimenting
      > >with nat.ag may accept this so that u persist in
      > this direction
      > even if it
      > >implies some modifications/adaptations & not
      > following fukuoka-
      > san in all
      > >its beautiful gestures...
      > Hello Emilia,
      > Like Robert, I've been trying to figure out why my
      > seedball experiment
      > has so far produced no plants. I can easily believe
      > that using seedballs
      > may be inappropriate in trying to grow most
      > vegetables. What bothers
      > me, however, is that so far I've had nothing sprout
      > from seedballs.
      > In my experiment there were flower and herb seeds as
      > well as vegetables.
      > I tried to get as broad a range of plants as
      > possible just to see
      > what would grow and what would not. This included
      > wildflowers and
      > some plants that are considered weeds by some people
      > and edibles
      > by others. The experiment is still going on. Our
      > fall/winter rains
      > are just beginning and I am waiting to see if there
      > is any delayed
      > sprouting. One of the possibilities is that I sowed
      > the seedballs
      > too late and they didn't get enough rain to
      > dissolve.
      > My original goals with this experiment were not to
      > get a vegetable
      > garden going. I think I was hoping to get something
      > closer to the
      > foraging garden that has been mentioned before, but
      > the main goal
      > was to just watch what happened and learn from the
      > experience.
      > To me your phrase "... some
      > modifications/adaptations & not following
      > fukuoka-san in all its beautiful gestures..."
      > touches on something
      > very significant.
      > I think we can look at what Fukuoka is saying/doing
      > from two different
      > perspectives. The first is to look at his teachings
      > as a method for
      > practicing sustainable agriculture/ecosystem
      > modification. From this
      > perspective we are looking at his work for ways to
      > grow things better
      > (cheaper, easier, more diverse, nutritous,
      > sustainable, etc.) and
      > so threads about foraging, permaculture,
      > biodynamics, etc. can be
      > relevant and helpful.
      > From this perspective there have been a lot of
      > legitimate questions
      > raised lately. For example, why did Fukuoka's family
      > convert to more
      > conventional agriculture? Has anyone had any
      > significant success
      > growing vegetables using seedballs? For that matter
      > have there been
      > any successful seedball projects outside of
      > Fukuoka's farm and if
      > so, what did they grow? What does it take to start a
      > Fukuoka-natural
      > garden (personally I think it requires at least
      > initial tilling)?
      > And other questions concered with his method of
      > growing food and
      > how it can be used/modified/adapted to fit other
      > environments/needs.
      > But I think there is a second way to look at what
      > Fukuoka is saying/doing,
      > a second and unique perspective. Fukuoka, like all
      > other sustainable
      > agriculturalists, is concerned with growing food in
      > a sustainable,
      > "natural" way. But that is not his main concern. I
      > think the clearest
      > expression of what Fukuoka is all about came when he
      > said...
      > "The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of
      > crops,
      > but the cultivation and perfection of human beings."
      > Perhaps this is one of those "elegant gestures" you
      > are talking about?
      > It is certainly possible/legitimate/useful to look
      > at Fukuoka's work
      > from the first perspective. Judging from the
      > conversations on this
      > list that is how most people do look at it,
      > including myself most
      > of the time. But then every once in awhile the other
      > perspective
      > pops unbidden into my mind and something inside
      > feels uplifted.
      > PS. In case you can't tell, today is a rain day...
      > Larry Haftl
      > larry@...

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