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Our Annual Permaculture Letter
The following letter is our annual Permaculture report. Send SASE or
international return mail coupons and address label for a print copy, which
includes drawings and additional information.
Barking Frogs Farm
Home of Yankee Permaculture and Elfin Permaculture
P.O. Box 52, Sparr FL 32192 USA Email: Permacltur@aol.com
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
Greetings from our new permaculture center, Barking Frogs Farm. Our new
place is on good-old Florida wetland, real alligator and cotton-mouth snake
country. We were just looking for a temporary residence, to avoid paying
rent, when we found this place. It is so beautiful we both immediately
wanted to settle here, despite the fact that anything one does in the state
of Florida is fouled with regulations and red tape.
So here we are, under giant oaks, huge water hickories and gorgeous sabal
palms, polishing up our design for the place and trying to get our various
permaculture programs under way. We have acquired two adjacent homesteads,
one house for a permaculture center with room for guests and the other for
our private residence.
Since 1981, we subsidized our permaculture work, particularly the
publications, with other earnings. Now we intend to make permaculture pay for
itself. Permaculture outreach does not pay. But our land-based projects have
profit potential, so that they can help retire the mortgage on the
So what's new. The most exciting new event, after our new home, is Dan's
development of a Permaculture Design Correspondence Course for the internet.
The course combines the practicality of good old fashioned book study with
the dynamic of an email classroom. Dan appears to be the last hold-out for
the three-week live course, preferring the longer formats, and the new course
fits the bill. It runs between 20 and 26 weeks, depending on the needs of
the particular group. Students in the course have gained a good grasp of
the design principles and we are sure that the longer course duration makes
it easier to integrate them into daily life. For more about the course,
email us at <Permacltur@aol.com>. Ask for a course protocol and reading list.
Tuition is $1,000, of which half covers individual assistance on the
student's personal design project. Monitors pay $100. The course may be
taken in segments--it has three parts plus the design project. We do not
charge extra for permaculture course graduates who wish to do advanced work
in any of our programs.
The next email course begins in October 1997. Enrollment is limited to 20.
We also offer a similar program as a conventional correspondence course, but
because the program is one-on-one, tuition is higher. We feel that the new
email format enables people in remote areas to attend as well as folks who
cannot take off 3+ weeks to attend our conventional course.
Here at Barking Frogs Farm, we now can accept residential students in our
APT (Advanced Permaculture Training) program. (APT also allows for advanced
students to work at home or in the field.) By the time you get this, we will
have room for a total of two APT students and interns. Interns have the
opportunity to work on our publications, help in documenting our permaculture
design, and assist in such projects as our aquaculture, agroforestry and
chinampas systems, all, obviously, in the early stages of development. APT
students design their own programs, which include producing a design,
implementing it, and participating in some form of research and outreach.
Not all was progress. After four different residences in 1996, our
publications program slowed considerably. We continue to upgrade some
publications, most recently with an improved rendering of John Fargher's The
Oaks (Yankee Permaculture Paper #12.) We issued no new publications. Pending
publications are listed on the reverse of this sheet. We are hopeful that we
will get a publications intern interested in benefiting from Dan's 40 years
of editorial experience.
Our involvement in the Kenya project is now minimal, as the local organizers
have identified a suitable permaculture expert right over the border in
Uganda. This is much more practical. We may offer a program in Paraguay.
Contact us in three months if you want details. Otherwise, we have done
little in the way of marketing workshops and courses. Dan likes staying at
Plans include development of two poultry forage systems: a movable chicken
coop that we can haul to places where we want weeds or insects cleaned up and
a hexagonal array of fenced forage areas so that we can move chickens around
to harvest or glean in various rotation schemes. (Well, there are two other
poultry systems in the works, but we will limit this report to one sheet of
paper.) We hope to acquire a few Asian water buffalo as draft and meat
animals that can pasture in part on the weeds that clog our waterways. One
of our main thrusts is developing a system of chinampas. Dan has a grant
proposal out seeking funds to document chinampas still operating near Mexico
city. He has a few other grant prospects in mind. Suggestions are welcome.
Meanwhile, the first prototype Barking Frogs Farm chinampa is nearly finished
and promises to be as high yielding as reputed.
Cynthia has taken the next step as a Certified Nurse Midwife, and is
teaching at the nearby University of Florida. She is very interested in
identifying medicinal herb crops suited for our place, particularly those
that we can process with value added steps. Wetland species of hawthorns,
including mayhaws, fit the bill perfectly. We have started planting them. We
have also found that the old standby, echinacea, does well on our sandy land
where moisture hungry sabal palms create arid conditions, regardless of
We invite you to pass the word about our email course and internships. This
is a good time to be thinking about getting presents for the Solstice season
holidays. Please check out our order form to see if there is something you
would like to give, maybe to yourself. We are still willing to do a limited
amount of away-from-home teaching and consulting.
We know that most of you are also working hard for Mother Earth in many
ways. We thank you for your efforts and look to join forces when
For Mother Earth