Archive for ‘PANYA PROJECT’

September 29, 2012

FOOD FOREST… VOLUNTEER GARDEN FOR THE PANYA PROJECT…

by kaiconfusion

About how I created a new organic forest garden at Permaculture Project Panya in Thailand.

Table of contents

  • PROJECT OUTLINE
  • TIMEPAPS VIDEO
  • PROJECT PDF HAND OUT
  • PROJECT PRESENTATION
  • ABOUT FOOD FOREST
  • LINKS & RESOURCES

PROJECT OUTLINE

The Forest Garden Project had become my biggest and main project at the Panya Project Northern Thailand where I have lived and worked  between March and July 2012. I got the idea for the Forest garden coincidently while we were cutting weeds to build a new compost pile. The idea of planning, designing and planting a forest garden really fascinates me as I considered my self a bit of a forest man.
I love the idea of the food forest, as it truly can provide for all our true needs!
The project includes so many steps, so much knowledge about ecology and strategies on how to work with the land in the most effective way, too much to explain in detail. I hope with my explanations the video, the PDF,  and links you will get an idea and hopefully you will get excited about Food forestry too and try it yourself ! It can be done by anyone and anywhere!

TIMELAPS VIDEO

PROJECT PDF HAND OUT

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FOREST GARDEN PROJECT – PANYA 2012 pdf.

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PROJECT PRESENTATION AND INFORMATION

Idea – motivation

The creation of a forest garden that after a period of planning and designing, will grow into a new place for quiet observation, contemplation, inspiration and transformation of an abandoned place that was taken over by weeds for many years. Everyone at Panya is invited to continue what we’ve started as a playground and experimental field and thereby create more beauty and diversity, experiencing the forest garden as a place to implement your knowledge which you gain during your stay at Panya. Thus every helping and love giving hand is welcomed.

IMG_3055IMG_2424IMG_2436
Clearing the space by cutting weeds.

Food forest

A food forest or forest garden is a self sustaining, man created imitation of a natural forest system, that rather than an annual garden has a long or indefinite life span and that after an intensive designing period, doesn’t need much intervention any more. A well working system will be high in diversity and productivity.
Every forest consists of seven layers which

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September 18, 2012

Compost Heated Shower – In 4 minutes…

by kaiconfusion

A belated supplement to one of my projects at the Panya Projects earlier this year.
I have written and posted some pictures but here is now a small timelaps on
the compost heated shower.

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If you want to know more click HERE! to get to the article.

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July 30, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: VI. Site and surrounding

by kaiconfusion

Table of contentIMG_3635

  • 10 MIN VIDEO OF 3 MONTH AT PANYA
  • ANIMALS AND WILDLIFE
  • PUN PUN
  • MOON BAN ME JO VILLAGE
  • SURROUNDING
  • LINKS/ RESOURCES
  • TED TALK BY PUN PUN THE FOUNDER OF JON JANDAI

This is the last of the series of 6 posts that I have written about the Permaculture Project Panya in northern Thailand.
I wrote it as inspiration for people seeking answers to problems that become more and more apparent to everyone of us. Peak oil and energy crisis, pollution, social segregation and isolation, contaminated food, environmental exploitation and destruction among many others.
A sustainable life and future is possible however. Life can be so easy if we only wake up from this bad dream and realise and see real beauty happiness and freedom.
With every of the 6 posts I want to show and explain alternatives to some of the most obvious problems we might face when considering to change our life to the better. There are so many alternatives out there I can only scratch the surface with this.
I have found unbelievable strength and beauty and meaning and answers in Permaculture. I am living it and breathing it and I want to dedicate my life spreading it.
This post is a flood of images in contrast to the floods of words in the last posts. I hope you like it and you are more than welcome to leave a comment or feedback. Thank You! Kai.

VIDEO

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July 13, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: V. Community Living

by kaiconfusion

Table of contentsIMG_3581

  • VOLUNTEERS
  • DAY TO DAY LIFE
  • MEETINGS AND DECISION-MAKING
  • MANAGEMENT AND TASKS
  • COURSES AND PROFIT SHARE
  • THE CHALLENGE
  • ACTIVITIES
  • LINKS/ RESOURCES

Written by the author of
www.beetroot. wordpress.com
currently (2012)  working at the Panya Project. Photos and editing by kaiconfusion.

In the last four posts I have tried to introduce into important practical aspects of alternative and sustainably living. In this 5th post Mich
and I, are trying to introduce in how we can live together and how such life can be organized which is just as well a very important aspect of sustainably living, again at the example of the Panya Project and this time the community.

In Permaculture there are three core values:

  • Earthcare – recognising that the Earth is the source of all life (and is possibly itself a living entity- see Gaia theory) and respecting her accordingly.
  • Peoplecare – supporting and helping each other to change to ways of living that are not harming ourselves or the planet, and realizing that we are a part of the Earth, not apart from it.

Thus Permaculture is not just gardening or agriculture, it is a holistic and sustainable design system in which humans and community are a very important factor within the entirety of the complex interconnectedness of all life.

Panya Community

Besides being a Pemaculture education center, the members of the Panya Project form an intentional community which integrates living and working together, sharing responsibilities, profits from courses, meals, decision-making and more.

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July 5, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: IV. Energy, Water, Waste

by kaiconfusion

Table of contentsIMG_3641

  • WATER
    • rainwater harvesting
    • greywater
    • hot water
    • reduced water usage
  • ENERGY
  • WASTE
    • toilets/ sewage
    • recycling
  • LINKS/ RESOURCES

This 4th post about Panya and alternative live styles will shine more light on important aspect of sustainable living following the first three posts intro, buildings and gardening.
In many countries the idea of a low consumptive, off the grid lifestyle will not be well received by the authorities and for many countries, laws and regulations making it nearly impossible or very complicated. Why? What’s the harm?
To subversive is the idea of true independence and self-reliance. It is the knife in the back of capitalism!
The idea of people being able to help themselves and not being totally reliant on all the system’s shackles, is fearsome for the establishment.
Permaculture is an ecological design system that if applied frees us from these shackles. In permaculture design one tries to look at the inputs and outputs of a system. Bringing external resources in and having to bring others out again in the from of waste for instance is fundamentally insufficient. Local closed systems are whether in city or village the way to go and can be realized by looking at what resources are available on site, what local methods have been used in the past and how the local community can work together. Even Towns can be more efficient and sustainable if things like better public transport, rain water harvesting, green spaces dedicated for food production, energy usage reduction, insulated houses, solar energy, local produced foods, bio gas usage etc etc. would be implemented. [www.transitionnetwork.org/]

WATER
It can be easy to forget how crucial, valuable and precious water is for the survival and well being of all life on the planet.
In a major blackout of a city where would you get your water from? If the water taps stopped working?
Panya has been designed in a water efficient self sufficient way. Swales and a dam have been dug to make the most of rain water. Rainwater harvesting supplies drinking water and a well was dug to pump ground water for general water uses.
The dam will be repaired and functioning by next year(2013) with a water capacity of about 1 million liters, it will be more than enough to serve all water needs throughout the year.

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June 22, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: III. GARDENING

by kaiconfusion

IMG_3311Table of contents

Geoff Lawton – “All the World’s Problems Can Be Solved in a Garden”

The word permaculture is derived from the words permanent agriculture and permanent culture. “ It is a way of arranging your life to be happy and abundant.” You can meet your own needs without making anyone else’s life less pleasant. Human habitats can be made highly productive with much less work than is taken to make them destructive under present systems. By making decisions in designing our lives we can manage our resources well […].” Graham Bell

Permaculture gardening is about using sustainable and efficient methods that are in balance with nature by observing nature and working with it, rather than against it. In permaculture gardening, mulching, composting, seed saving choosing perennial plants over annual plants, giving thought into the design process on where to plant what when and together with what(companion planting),
are essentials ingredients for a healthy and successful functioning system.
It is about working with nature rather than against it. Acknowledging it’s friendship discarding the idea of its enmity.

At Panya however, there are three main garden systems. The contour garden, the biodynamic garden and the forest garden. There are of course several small gardens around the property each house has its own small garden and there are fruit trees and shrubs and other plants wildly planted everywhere at Panya. Most spaces are somehow used for food production not all of them are managed equally time intensive. It has become a beautiful densely vegetated living space!

Kitchen garden IMG_3305
The kitchen garden is build on contour right in front of Sala and kitchen keeping the distance conveniently small for maintenance watering and daily harvesting.
Here Panya grows most of  its annual and seasonal vegetables. Some of the veggies and herbs you can find here are tomato, egg plant,  chillies, potato, corn, pumpkin, carrots, spinach, lettuce, beans and herbs like basils and hibiscus to name a few.
Most of the garden beds are build from split bamboo as walls which are then filled with layers of compost. Plants are planted out in crop rotation and watered with a water efficient drip irrigation system.

Biodynamic garden IMG_3380
Biodynamic agriculture (originated by Rudolf Steiner,) is a method of organic farming that emphasizes the holistic development and interrelationships of the soil, plants and animals as a self-sustaining system.” Wikipedia (06/15/2012)
The main difference to other spaces at Panya is that in the biodynamic garden Panya uses an astronomical sowing and planting calendar. Since bio dynamic looks at things in a very holistic way it takes more factors in to account that have an influence on the ecosystem than conventional agriculture does. The sowing calendar looks at moon phases and its effects on soil and plants and the relationship of macro and microcosm.

Forest garden/ food forest
“Forest gardening can be viewed as a way to recreate the Garden of Eden”. Wikipedia

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June 17, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: II. BUILDINGS AND BUILDING

by kaiconfusion

Table of contents

  • IntroIMG_1954
  • Natural vs. conventional building
  • Materials and methods
  • Panya Buildings (pictures)
  • Related topics and links

Intro:
One of the major factors that puts most of us in deep dependence of our monetary system surely is to have a roof over our heads. Paying over priced rents every month till the end of time or becoming slaves of the banks by paying off the mortgage for house and lawn are about all options we have.
The building sector also is a huge factor for the destruction of the planet and exploitation of our natural resources with the heavy use of cement, steel and toxic chemicals.
Of course there are many alternatives. I will mention some but try and focus on what alternatives are realised at Panya. The buildings and structures here are natural buildings primarily build with mud. This building technique is called adobe or earthen building. The buildings and structures at Panya are mostly build from people with little experience as it is a learning space. There are many examples of buildings around the world with different degrees of quality. For many of them it is hard to tell a difference between natural and conventional building.

Natural vs. conventional building
Why would anyone want to live in a mud house?
Houses like at Panya as” unperfected” as they might be can cost between absolutely nothing if all building materials and tools are on site or not probably more then a few thousand Euros depending on size and style. Another unbeatable advantage is that literally everyone can build it. Mud houses are sustainable and ecologically sound, building is very fast and easy to learn and they are quick and easy to build, too. They are much more energy efficient, they are biodegradable and recyclable. That means everyone can have his own house with almost no ecological impact at all and no financial dependencies!
The only thing in our way might be the authorities which we need find creative ways to deal with! In probably most western countries, the building codes will make it difficult or even impossible to build natural buildings.
Before we start such a project we need to look into laws and regulations of the country we want to build in!
In anyway it shouldn’t be a reason to stop us! Mud houses and other natural buildings if yurts, tepee, or wood structures have been build for thousands of years. Some of them have proven to be more earthquake resistant than conventional concrete buildings. The reason why it would be illegal to build like that, is to protect the profits needed so badly to keep the system running and us firmly tied to it!

Materials and methodsP1010955

Adobe brick
Most buildings are build from adobe bricks which are made in a mud pit to mixing the ingredients needed together without the need for tools.
Mud bricks are made from a mix of about 70% of sand and 30% clay plus fibres which can be chopped straw or coconut husks or rice husk etc.,which is then all mixed together with water until a thick consistency is developed. The mix is then filled in a mold which is a wooden form to give the brick their shape. The bricks are then laid in the sun to dry and become useable after about two weeks. For building the bricks will be laid just like conventional bricks with the mortal being mud as well.

Wattle and Daub

Another building method and still to be found in very old European houses and used at Panya is called wattle and daub. A wooden grid structure is build as walls. Straw is covered in mud to a kind of mud dread lock which are then smeared onto the grid structure to slowly build a mud covered strong wall. Once finished and dried these structures are very strong and have even proven to be earthquake resistant.

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June 12, 2012

PANYA PROJECT ::: I. INTRODUCTION

by kaiconfusion

INTRODUCTION INTO AN ALTERNATIVE LIFESTYLE:
EXAMPLE PANYA PROJECT: VOLUNTEER BASED ORGANIC FARM & PERMACULTURE PROJECT THAILAND

Everyone is talking about problems. The news literally bombard us with negativity, documentaries and books teach us about the horrors of our reality and we do it with each other, too. I am not saying that it’s all bad, one of the good thing about it, is that we increase and share our knowledge and awareness and strengthen our ability for critical thinking. Without answers to the problems we are uncovering though, all of this knowledge can have a strong negative and depressing and even devastating effect on us, it can create great hopelessness, fear and anger inside us.

With the next few articles, I want to write about a few possible solutions to some of the problems we as human kind are currently facing. Inspired by what people have achieved at Panya, which is just one of many projects around the globe,
that shows alternatives, I want to tell and show a little more about this alternative lifestyle.
It won’t of course appeal to everyone and it is not a solution for the entire planet but I guess a little bit of it can be
inspiring to many. I hope you discover something new and I’d be more than happy to get feedback.

TOPICS

POST I: PANYA  PROJECT I : INTRO
POST II: PANYA PROJECT II : BUILDINGS
POST III: PANYA PROJECT  III: GARDENS
POST IV: PANYA PROJECT IV: ENERGY/ WATER/ WASTE
POST V: PANYA PROJECT V: COMMUNITY
POST VI: PANYA PROJECT VI: PANYA SITE/ SURROUNDING

POST I : PANYA INTRO – PANYA’S HISTORY/PHILOSOPHY AND SUSTAINABILITY

I have spent a good two month now at the Panya project in Moo Bahn Mae Jo in northern Thailand.
Everyday is a day of learning new things and skills. That makes it such an extraordinary experience, so different from a daily routine. Everyday is exciting. As I interpret our times, to me it is obvious that environmentally and economically and even spiritually we need answers and alternatives to our current reality. Most people understand that now, I believe though many lacking  knowledge of alternatives, answers and solutions. So lets look forward and focus on solutions!

A short photo slide show to start with from the last Permaculture Introduction Course at Panya.


What is Panya?

Panya is a non-profit permaculture project (?WHAT IS PERMACULTURE?) which has evolved toward an educational center, inspiring and teaching volunteers from around the world

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