Hello Orlando Permies!

Here is a recap of our  February meeting (held Feb. 2) at Audubon Park Covenant Church.  We began the meeting by acknowledging our excitement to be working with Rev. Sarah Robinson. Sarah spoke about the church’s desire to be more involved in the community by sharing their space with our group.

After thanking Pastor Sarah, Jeff Trapani spoke about “Starting Your Spring Garden.” Jeff guided the group through the basics of Permaculture. He shared how we can work with nature instead of working against it.

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After Jeff’s engaging introduction, Hae-Yuan Chang recapped some of our previous action days.  Our action days give us a way to share ourselves with the community, these work parties bring us together to learn, share ideas and good food.

Yuan highlighted our most recent action day  in St. Cloud at Matt Hunter’s farm. Where we helped paint bat boxes, build a shade house, and planted trees. We have a great recap video edited by Dave Kimbal showcasing this Action Day. Check it out in the side bar as well as the other past Action Days.

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I was up next to explain the importance of building soil. My presentation was focused on the thought of soil as a community of organisms ready to work for us gardeners. Soil is a web. A network connecting fungi, bacteria and other beneficial microbes. And it further connects insects and earthworms to plants, birds and mammals. Short videos helped the group understand these complex relationships.

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Then Matt Hunter explained how to transform a lawn into a permaculture garden. He shared how to find low-cost resources like compost, and other organic materials. Matt walked us through the process Step by step and showed us how it is done.  The results are inspiring.

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After the speakers, attendees interacted with each other in a soil building activity. After dividing into groups, folks worked together to create a soil mix in order to plant a mulberry or Katuk cutting. Afterwards each group discussed how they amended the soil for their planting.  There were differences in approach and design that added to the depth of the discussion.

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At the end of the night,  we raffled dozens of plants and cuttings. Each donated by members of our community.  I was excited to have won three plants I did not have already! At the end, everyone went home with at least one plant of their choice, that is, if they bought a raffle ticket!

Overall, this meeting was everything we had hoped it would be. People came together to share and learn about Permaculture and enjoy the benefits of creating a community.

We all hope you come out to our next meeting, when we will be discussing Sustainable Food systems. See you there!