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What is a seed ball?
The seed balls purpose is to:
- make it easy to plant seeds without tilling the ground
- protect the sown seeds from insects and animals until they germinate
- provide the optimum environment for germination
- be able to sow a variety of seeds, of plants which will support eachother, at the same time
- an old bicycle
- some metal parts
- some wooden parts
- 6 cupboard wheels
- a plastic barrel
- old irrigation tube
- old motorcycle inner tire
- small segment of 1 cm spaced wire fence
- water spray
We first made a support made of steel by electric welding to stabilize the bicycle and elevate the back wheel.
We then constructed the wooden frame and positioned the cupboard wheels, 4 in the bottom and 2 on the side. We had also to fix this wooden construction to the bicycle in order to balance the force applied by the strap and maintain the distance between the barrel and the bicycle.
We made a hole in the barrel cover to allow access while turning (adding of dry material, water and taking the seed balls out) and we fit the old irrigation tube on the barrel to make a guide for the belt.
For the belt we used an old motorcycle inner tire that we cut to the appropriate width (about 2cm) and we finally just knotted it to make it the appropriate length.
To take the seed balls out of the barrel when turning we constructed a small shovel with the 1cm spaced wire fence.
How it works:
We first introduce dry material:
- 1 unit of the seeds to be sowed
- 5 units of clay
- 3 units of compost
When the barrel turns we spray some water.
With the shovel we take out the seedballs that have become larger – smaller than 1cm diameter falls through the holes.
The main issue we faced is that the seedballs didn’t get the size we wished (1cm diameter) despite a long time turning. We tried to add dry material and water at a slower rate again and again on the already tumbling seedballs but the majority still remained small and after a while the barrel became really full of small seedballs and really hard to turn. We made a try by adding 1 measure of sand but we didn’t observe any improvement.
As we used very small seeds (alfalfa-medicado sativa and white clover-trifolium repens) we think that the seedballs small size is not a real problem. We just throw them in the field and we are now waiting them to germinate.
Our next concern is a quite low output in term of quantity compared to the invested effort (construction of the machine and biking for hours). Processing by hand seemed to be as productive as our machine. We thought that maybe with a bigger barrel we could have reached a better output.Comments (0)
Posted on: 10 March 2013
An international Permaculture Design Course (PDC) is being hosted by Nawaya in a rural area close to Cairo in Egypt. It is a great opportunity to learn about permaculture in a country like Egypt during such dynamic times of change. This is the first time a PDC is held in Egypt, bringing in a diversity of local knowledge to be merged with internationally renowned instructors: Rod Everett and Mill Milichap. The PDC will take place in Giza, Egypt from February 14th to 25th 2013, at Nawaya?s permaculture demonstration site at the Fagnoon Art School near the town of Abusir (35 km from Cairo; 20-minute drive from Cairo) near the Sakkara plateau necropolis.Comments (0)
Posted on: 03 February 2013
Mediterranean Permaculture Practitioners Come Together for the First Time! (Marmariç, Turkey, July 2012)
The PDC graduates of the Mediterranean and the Middle-east will converge for the first gathering specifically for this region. This event will make possible the initiation of networking and sharing of knowledge & experiences for the region. The Mediterranean is one zone where we need this collaboration desperately; in response to severe soil loss due to population pressures, land/water mismanagement and climatic issues.
Sharing, documenting and database building for successes and failures in the region is a main theme for the convergence, taking place in Marmariç, Turkey between 17-21st of July 2012.
PRI Turkey will be hosting two other major events right before the Convergence:Comments (0)
Posted on: 20 April 2012
The Permaculture Research Institute Turkey is planning to host three prominent events in summer 2012. First a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course will be organized in Istanbul on 30 June ? 12 July, 2012; held by two legendary trainers, Bill Mollison and Geoff Lawton. Following the PDC, a Regional Permaculture Conference will take place in Istanbul on the 14th of July. Last but not least the PIT would like to welcome you at its field practice venue; Marmariç village in Izmir, for the Regional Permaculture Convergence ? the Mediterranean, Balkans Caucasus and Middle East.
This open call aims to inform you about these events and to form an international prep team for the preparations.
Below, further explanations are provided about the events. We wanted to reach out to a group of existing contacts of the institute, in order to ask for your support. We look for volunteers who would like to join our International Prep Team (IPT).Comments (0)
Posted on: 25 January 2012
Below you can see a short film from the Rocket Stove Course.Comments (0)
Posted on: 02 September 2011
Each day more than half of world’s population burns almost three million tons of firewood on open fires or traditional stoves. This causes 1.5 million deaths worldwide each year and massive environmental consequences. Usually, traditional stoves are producing much more health damaging smoke and burn much more biomass fuel than needed. Energy efficient biomass-burning stoves can help to solve these problems. But to be sustainable they have to meet users’ requirements and local manufacturing possibilities.Comments (1)
Posted on: 29 June 2011
Interview: Senem Tüfekçioğlu, PDC Istanbul 2010, December, 2010
During the PDC, you mentioned that in a real recipe book, the location and the season of the dish must be given. Can you please explain why?
Yes, it’s because we need to eat fresh food and we need to eat local food. With minimum distance from where it’s harvested to where it is consumed. Because that’s the local food that’s got the synergy of energy and undeniably rich. Local food that is absolutely fresh. Now, if we set those criteria on recipes, we end up with the ultimate food franchise of really fresh food that is grown in season and food that is grown throughout the year with no real season in the perennial food. And we end up with this wonderful mixture of identifying food to place to people. And that’s what we need for a healthy people and a healthy globe.
What do you would change if we built city farms all around Turkey?
I think, people’s happiness would change. People’s health would change. And people’s understanding of what we need to do to be sustainable would change. So, we would gain personal identity as well. That’s we need. We need identity, as in this is the culture of the people; this is the people of the land.Comments (0)
Posted on: 10 June 2011
|Photo © Craig Mackintosh, PRI Editor|
Bill Mollison and Geoff Lawton are coming to Istanbul, the ancient city flanking the strait of Bosphorus – the edge between continents, climates and cultures – to deliver a PDC (Permaculture Design Certificate) course. This is the first event bringing the two legendary permaculture teachers together in the Northern Hemisphere. The full 72-hour PDC course starts on the 21st of November and ends on the 4th of December 2010.
Since the first Permaculture Design Course was offered in 1972, people from widely diverse backgrounds and interests have graduated. Farmers, ranchers, landowners, foresters, landscape designers, architects, builders, planners, developers, accountants, financiers, bankers, publishers, attorneys, aid workers, educators, environmentalists and high school students have all brought Permaculture techniques into their homes, businesses and communities. This course is for anyone interested in gaining practical skills and perspective for sustainable living and productivity.Comments (3)