Pasadena Learning Gardens

Resourcing communities to create a healthier more sustainable future


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Meet the Farmer interviews Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm

Joel Salatin is the real deal. His philosophy that “Part of our responsibility as stewards of the earth is to respect the design of creation” has lead him to devise systems that support the natural systems upon which his farm sits. He has inspired many and here are three great videos of him on Meet the Farmer TV – man I really need a beat hat…

polyface « Search Results «.


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Tools for a mediahub

It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words and many people no longer have much interest in reading a thousand words… Thus we have chosen to tell our stories and those of other sustainable living champions with image, video and audio.

We are collecting a set of tools that might be valuable to others choosing to follow this path and we’ll document the issues here.

With a longstanding love of superior audio our mediahub venture is anchored by a Zoom H4n digital audio recorder. We use this as the audio input device on our videos or as a stand alone unit for podcasts or radio work.

Electro-Voice 635N

via Audio Tips for Recording Better Sounding Interviews | B&H Photo Video Pro Audio.


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Nutrition

What should I eat?

I’ve been reflecting on this for years and am finally getting a handle on it. First, to paraphrase Michael Pollan in Food Rules, our western diet has led to an unacceptable increase in many health issues. We don’t know enough about how our body uses the complex combinations of food each of us chooses to consume, and tranditional diets, regardless of being protein, fat, or carbohydrate dominated do not lead to many of these health issues.

I’ve come to believe that back in the days where generations of people stayed close to home, that microorganisims in the soil that facilitae nutrient uptake in plants, the plants themselves, and the microorganisims in animals and us, coevolved in a way that created a system that worked amazingly well, and that we’ve found hundreds of ways to break this system…

However I am, like many, such a mutt that I come from many places and Thomas Woolf was right, you can’t go home.

So I’ve found three nutritional models and am convinced the truth lies somewhere in the space between them.

Fist is Joel Fuhrmans model of Nutrient Density

Nutrient Density.

such that we should always maximize the nutrients and fiber we get in a calorie of food and this leads us to eating a largely plant based diet with few animal or highly processed products.

Second is the model of local and seasonal produce

Third is the model of living food – fermented, sprouted, etc.


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A Recipe for Simplifying Life: Ditch All the Recipes – NYTimes.com

This is great. In particular the section on cooking veggies. She buys a load and goes home and prepares them all, some for today and the rest for the remainder of the week. I’ve been food processing my carrots and beets into shreds that I put in everything but never thought about it like this…

A Recipe for Simplifying Life: Ditch All the Recipes – NYTimes.com.


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Community Farms

We believe that communities can largely feed themselves.

The first step is to identify four community members to collaboratively grow a significant part of their vegetables. We are developing a plan and series of classes to make this easy.

The key benefits are that each season (spring or fall) each member grows one of the plant communities the group wants. This is much easier than each member growing everything they need.

So one spring, I grow the tomato community and my neighbor the squash community. Plants generally get along with their family members and there are often a few herbs and flowers and other veggies that fit right in.

The next year I’m growing the squash family and my neighbor the tomatoes. This process deals with plant rotation, slows the rate at which one needs to master the growing, cultivation and harvesting of particular plants (depth more than breath), and builds community. Tools can be shared, for the garden and for the kitchen, and supplies and food staples can be purchased in bulk. And of course the process can grow into as many members as interested.

Others can join with fruit trees, assorted perennial plants, bees/honey or chickens, etc. And excess of any harvest can be swapped for whatever else the group needs.

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