The Abundant Edge Podcast wants to hear from you!

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We have an awesome lineup of guests and experts that we'll be interviewing including kicking off the season with Mark Sheppard, one of the foremost pioneers of restoration agriculture and agroforestry. We've also got Ted Brinegar of Foxhole homes, Christy Hemenway of goldstar bees, Peter McCoy of Radical Mycology, Rachael Forster of Tamar Grow Local and those are just a few of the ones that have already been recorded! 
Even more important than the guests on the show though is YOU. More than ever before I want to hear from you and help you with the questions, problems and challenges that YOU have, and that's why we've set up the abundant edge podcast facebook page to give you easier access to the team here at abundant edge. There you can post questions and comments either directly on the page or as a private message and we'll answer them for you on our new monthly segement that we all “the regenerative round table.” Once a month we'll get the team together and maybe even a special guest or two, and we'll discuss your questions and comments to shed light on them from a professional perspective. I've put the link to the facebook page on the show notes of this episode but you can also find it by just searching the name on FB. I'm really looking forward to hearing from all of you listeners and helping you get your questions answered since you've all been such a huge inspiration to me and the team over the last season. 
Lastly, I'd like to make a call to all Spanish speaking regenerative workers, permaculturalists and natural builders. In the upcoming season we'll be interviewing and highlighting more incredible innovators from around the world and as a first step we'll be publishing more interviews and episodes in Spanish, so if you are a spanish speaker or know of someone in the regenerative living world who is, please have them contact us at info@abundantedge.com so we can feature them and their important work on the podcast. Y si, nos pueden escribir en espanol. Todos nosotros lo hablamos bastante bien aunque hacemos erores de ves en cuando. Nos emociona mucho de aprender mas de lo que ustedes hacen para mejorar el mundo
So stay tuned for more important announcements in the lead up to the launch of season two on February 2. Until then, I hope all of you have an incredible and regenerative start to your new year

Resources:

The Abundant Edge facebook page

The Abundant Edge Apprenticeship is here!

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I want to take a quick moment to let you know about the apprenticeship opportunity that myself and the team at Abundant Edge will be offering at the end of January. This is the perfect opportunity for anyone who wants to see a professionally designed and implemented regenerative homestead be built from the ground up. Jeremy Fellows, Neal Hegarty and myself will be putting our years of experience as permaculture designers, natural builders, farm managers, and regenerative project consultants into this once in a lifetime opportunity to learn all the essential skills needed to get your own homestead up and running. We'll be tackling earthworks, market gardening, farm business management, natural building, and you'll also get step by step guidance on the design and implementation of your own regenerative lifestyle model. This apprenticeship runs for three months between the end of January through the end of April and priority will be given to applicants who can complete the full duration. Apprentices will also have the opportunity to assist on the various courses that we teach throughout the season and may even be offered a position on the Abundant Edge team after completion of the apprenticeship. We'll only be taking 3 apprentices this season so don't hesitate to submit your applications. Go now to abundantedge.com and find the apprenticeship option under the education tab to fill out your application today and see the rest of the details about our offerings this season. I can't wait to work and learn with you in the upcoming season, we really have so many cool projects to show you.

Before I go I just want to remind you all that I've heard your requests for a better way to interact with The Abundant Edge podcast and to have your questions answered. That's why in season two we'll be doing a new monthly segment called the regenerative round table in which myself and the abundant edge team will answer questions and comment on current events in the regenerative development world that listeners have submitted to us on the abundant edge podcast facebook page. I've put the link to the facebook page on the show notes of this episode but you can also find it by just searching the name on FB. I'm really looking forward to hearing from all of you listeners and helping you get your questions answered since you've all been such a huge inspiration to me and the team over the last season.

Lastly, I'd like to make a call to all Spanish speaking regenerative workers, permaculturalists and natural builders. In the upcoming season we'll be interviewing and highlighting more incredible innovators from around the world and as a first step we'll be publishing more interviews and episodes in Spanish, so if you are a spanish speaker or know of someone in the regenerative living world who is, please have them contact us at info@abundantedge.com so we can feature them and their important work on the podcast. Y si, nos pueden escribir en espanol. Todos nosotros lo hablamos bastante bien aunque hacemos erores de ves en cuando. Nos emociona mucho de aprender mas de lo que ustedes hacen para mejorar el mundo

So stay tuned for more important announcements in the lead up to the launch of season two on February 2. Until then, I hope all of you have an incredible and regenerative start to your new year

Resources:

The Abundant Edge facebook page

Creating a healthy ecosystem within through holistic nutrition with Breanne Gibson of Circular Nutrition: 049

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Wow! Here we are on the last episode of season 1 and I have a really valuable interview for all of you to wrap up the season. Over the last year we've talked so much about the regeneration of landscapes and ecosystems through permaculture as well as natural building techniques and materials, but to end on a bit of a different note, I spoke with Breanne Gibson, founder of Circular Nutrition to talk about some unexpected ways to apply holistic design and living practices to our own lives. Breanne is a leading holistic nutritionist, live food expert, and permaculture practitioner who talks to us about cultivating a regenerative ecosystem within ourselves through healthy eating and lifestyle choices. She dives in deep into the controversial topics of GMO foods, fad diets, and digestive issue treatment. Breanne even gives me a mini consultation in which we go over my own history of digestive illness and discuss how antibiotics, parasites, and diet can contribute to gut disbiosis and some ways to get back to optimum health. I can only imagine how many comments and discussions that these topics will spark, just for how personal everyone's opinions about health and nutrition are these days.

The truth is, I've really become fascinated by all of the ways that permaculture design and regenerative project management can be applied to other areas of life besides the more commonly associated land based renewal projects, and you can look forward to hearing a lot more about those topics when season two begins on February 2, of 2018. But don't forget to keep listening to our little in-between episodes where I'll give some early enrollment information for our upcoming regenerative homesteading apprenticeship, the 2018 workshop schedule and information on how to get your questions answered by our panel of experts all coming up in season two so stick around after the interview to hear more about that.

This is another information dense interview so you might want to grab your notebooks for this one


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

Breanne on Facebook

Circular Nutrition homepage

Permaculture earthworks demystified with Douglas Barnes, author of "The Permaculture Earthworks Handbook:" 048

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My guest today is here to demystify one of the aspects of permaculture design that I hear the most questions about, but also one of the issues that I see folks most entrenched in their viewpoints about. I'm talking about earthworks; one of the first aspects that people implement and the most permanent change made in a landscape. Today I've got Douglas Barnes, author of “permaculture earthworks” and owner director of EcoEdge Design Ltd. to answer our questions and take the guess work out of the subject of terrain changes.

In this interview Douglas talks about the best way to map out contours on the land, some of the most effective ways to harvest rainwater on a site, how to link up various earthwork and containment systems to make them work in tandem, and most importantly, he talks in detail about many of the safety concerns that many people have no idea about when it comes to installing swales and dams.

There's a ton of valuable information in this session but don't forget to check out his book “permaculture earthworks” for some essential formulas on calculating for swales, water catchments and so much more. Make sure to keep listening at the end of the interview to hear how you can win your own free copy of the book as well.


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

Permaculture Reflections Blog

The Permaculture Earthworks Handbook

EcoEdge Ltd

The myriad technologies and innovations of earthships with Rohan Sutherland: 047

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I have a very knowledgeable and experienced guest from the world of natural building for ya'll, Rohan Sutherland from Earthship biotecture is here to talk about one of the most famous and recognizable icons of the natural building movement in the last 30 years. Rohan began in international social and environmental work before getting involved with earthship biotecture after being inspired by their on the ground work around the world and the appropriate technology and design that they promoted.

Rohan has some amazing stories to tell from his international work, but more than anything he goes into great details about the systems and techniques that earthships exhibit and promote which facilitate off-grid, self sustainable living and integration of their structures with the environment.

In this interview we talk at length about indoor food production systems, water harvesting and reuse, and how earthships can be improved and adapted further by using more natural materials. Rohan even talks about the catch 22 of self sustainable living and how it can have a negative impact on community development and connection if not managed correctly. This is another very information dense interview so get your notebooks ready


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

 

The Abundant Edge design criteria for a regenerative lifestyle, with the free PDF design criteria list: 046

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In this special episode I'll be giving a detailed look at the design criteria that we use here at Abundant Edge to work on all kinds of regenerative projects. What's important to know about the design criteria list is that it's meant to be a concise and easy-to-follow guide to making responsible and insightful choices. The list is constantly evolving and updating with the experience gained by the Abundant Edge team and I. Keep an eye out for updated and revised versions in the future as we refine our systems and processes. And if any of you have questions for me, or any of the other team members, you can reach us directly on our Facebook page by searching "Abundant Edge." Leave your questions and comments there as posts or private messages, and we'll either answer them as soon as possible or maybe in a future podcast or blog post.


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

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Permaculture chocolate, the highest quality anywhere in the world with Lorenzo Maniet of El Porvenir cacao farm: 045

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This is one of the most delicious applications of large scale permaculture I can think of. Just the idea of chocolate, cardamom and coffee makes my mouth water. In this episode Neal Hegarty of Abundant Edge interviews Lorenzo Maniet, the owner and director of El Porvenir cacao finca in Guatemala. El Porvenir is the most impressive agroforestry system you'll ever find in which large scale cacao, cardamom, and coffee production are grown in the shade of larger hardwood trees for the best health of each species. Lorenzo has taken great care to save “criollo” or indigenous species of cacao from extinxion and as a result is producing the highest quality and most deliscious chocolate in the world, all on a regenerative farm model that's building soil with agroforestry and silvopasture practices. What's more is this unparalleled farm will be the site for the new Permaculture Design Certification course run by the instructors from Abundant Edge where students will get to learn all about the succesive models of planting that got this place up and running, and will help to design a zone 1 and 2 space for intensive food production for the finca. Go to abundantedge.com to learn more about the courses.


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

Jungle Wisdom PDC with Abundant Edge

Dalileo Chocolate

El Porvenir Finca

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The beauty and usefulness of bamboo, with Charlie Rendall of "Return to the Forest:" 044

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I'm especially happy to bring you today's interview because I'll be speaking with one of the natural builders who's most influenced and helped me out to get to where I am today running a profitable natural building and regenerative design company. His name is Charlie Rendall and he's the owner of Return to the Forest, a natural design and building firm in the next town over from me in San Marcos la Laguna here in Guatemala. For 13 years Charlie has been living in this little lake-side community and first started learning to build while working on structure on his own land. Through help from other colleagues and friends who got him interested in building with bamboo, Charlie gradually trained himself and a group of local construction workers to build and design some of the most impressive natural buildings that I've seen anywhere in the world.

I first met Charlie in May of 2016 when I reached out to him to interview him for an article on my website the last time I was traveling in Guatemala. I was so inspired by his work that I arranged with him to come back as an intern in order to learn more about bamboo and managing larger contracts and designs. I then lived and worked with him for four months and learned so much that has helped me in all aspects as a builder and business owner.

In this interview we'll be going into detail about bamboo as a building material and many of its' advantages and disadvantages. Charlie goes into how its' produced and treated for use in construction as well as how to maintain it so that it lasts as long as possible and performs well. Don't forget to check out his website at returntotheforest.org and have a look at the pictures of some of the many incredible projects that he's worked on over the years. There will be links to all of it in the show notes for this episode on the website as well.


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

The Bambu Guesthouse project pictures

returntotheforest.org

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Joel Salatin like you've never heard him before, on his new book "Your Successful Farm Business:" 043

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Most of you will already be familiar with the name Joel Salatin and his immense and incredible work with Polyface farm and all of his books, but you've probably never thought of him primarily as a businessman. In this episode we get to talk to Joel about his new book "Your Successful Farm Business" which he describes as a graduate level resource for anyone aspiring to make a living in a regenerative land based enterprise. This book is heavy on the entrepreneurial side of farming and covers everything from direct marketing to maximizing the efficiency of your operations. Joel also talks a lot about how his own farm has changed over time to accommodate new demands and trends in the market and how his designs and strategies have morphed to meet the new new food economy. This is a really information heavy interview so you'll likely want to have a notebook on hand for this one. I would also love to hear from you if you have any stories from your own farming business to share with the community. Enjoy!


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

Polyface Farm

Joel's books

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The unique factors of a true profitable permaculture farm with Richard Perkins of Ridgedale farm: 042

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This is honestly one of my favorite interviews that I've yet done and I'll tell you why. In this interview I got to talk with one of my heroes in the regenerative farming world, Richard Perkins. Many of you probably already know Richard and Ridgedale farm from all of the amazingly informative videos and seminars he's put out on YouTube. I came across Richard about 8 months ago and nearly binge watched all of his material online. In just a few short seasons, Richard and a small team have taken a severely degraded small farm in northern Sweden at 59 degrees north from mediocre mono-crop production into a profitable diverse and regenerative permaculture site that produces veggies, eggs, broiler hens, and much more, with longer term plans of food forests and perennial systems beginning to mature.

Now I almost never go over an hour in my interviews unless the subject matter is really good, so the fact that this one is just over an hour and 20 should tell you something. Richard starts by explaining why it's so important to bring back small mixed production farms all over the world and then jumps right into practical and actionable information by going over the 7 tenants of regenerative agriculture that he's outlined as the most important aspects to aim for. We also talked at length about how to solve the farm cash flow problem by finding alternative models and markets to sell to, how to intensify rather than merely grow your farm enterprises, how to holistically develop key ecosystems on the farm by building soil, and a whole lot more. This is definitely an interview you'll want to listen to with a notebook on hand, and don't forget to check out the links to some of the projects we mention in the interview in the show notes on the website.


For "The Abundant Edge" listeners only, you can now get 50% off your digital subscriptions to Permaculture Magazine North America by entering the code PMNA50abedge at checkout. Get your subscription today and dive deep into the local and global solutions that go beyond sustainability.

Resources:

Ridgedale Permaculture Farm

Alan Savory's holistic land management

The Pleistocene Project

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