My guest for this episode is Craig Sponholtz, a permaculture practitioner who operates Watershed Artisans. One of Craig’s specialties is in building regenerative earthworks to capture water and restore degraded land, which forms the basis for our conversation today.
What I like about this conversation with Craig is the role we have as designers to act as preservers of the land. We can use the design tools presented in permaculture to create solutions that stop erosion with structures built from natural materials that harvest water by slowing it, spreading it, and sinking it, all while keeping that water from cutting through the earth. Craig does this in a way that doesn’t disrupt the natural flow of water, but takes the path into account. For all of the avocation for the use of particular technique, this approach takes us back to observing the landscape first, and deciding on what is most appropriate rather than looking for a one-size fits all solution.
The strategy of water harvesting leads to a number of techniques. Some that Craig mentioned include check dams, one rock dams, rock mulches, and zuni bowls. In the show notes you’ll find a link to a document Craig made, along with Avery Anderson, that explains these techniques in detail, and one other called media luna. I also found a nice piece written by Bill Zeedyk about induced meandering. For those of you who have a copy of Mollison’s Designers’ manual, Chapter 7 Section 3 includes a number of great techniques as well.
Erosion Control Field Guide by Craig Sponholtz and Avery C. Anderson. This article includes information on Top Down Watershed Restoration including one rock dam, rock mulch, zuni bowl, and media luna techniques.
An Introduction to Induced Meandering by Bill Zeedyk (PDF)
Upcoming EDGE Alliances from Jen Mendez of Permie Kids
- Friday, December 5th, 2014, from 7 to 9pm Eastern, Jen is holding a K-12 Online Education Program.
- Saturday, January 10th, 2015, from 12 to 1pm Eastern, Jen is joined by Kelly Hogan from the Institute of Permaculture Education for Children to discuss opportunities for those who want to integrate traditional permaculture learning into the lives of children and adolescents.
The next Education Design Course cohort starts on January 9th, 2015.
Find out more about these and other great opportunities at PermieKids.com.
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