Making Barren Lands Bountiful: CNN

NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA:  Long-time permaculture worker Geoff Lawton explains to CNN the importance of composting, soil health and permaculture basics:

Compost may not seem a sexy subject, but within this steaming pile, life is being created.

“There’s organisms breathing and dying and reproducing very quickly,” (Lawton) says. “It’s all very hot and steamy.”

That rich soil lays the groundwork for Lawton’s revolutionary method of food production. It’s called permaculture.

Lawton says (permaculture) about rehabilitating areas that have been damaged by pollution or overuse by recycling nutrients and energy back into the soils.

The idea is to work with, not against, nature.

(…)

Lawton claims this permaculture method can work anywhere in the world, including the desert.

“Almost all the deserts on earth at one point were forested,” he said. “They all have different types of oasis systems. What you’re doing is picking different points in the desert and turning them into a rich oasis.”

On a DVD created by the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia, Lawton shows us what happened when he took this method to places like Morocco and Jordan — just 80 kilometers from the Dead Sea.

“People were amazed to see an area that was salty, sandy ground, turn into a lush green forest, that had mushrooms growing from the soil,” Lawton said.

The ability to “green” the desert is not only having an impact on the communities where these gardens are grown. Interest is also sprouting among young people.

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