Can all the Worlds Problems Really Be Solved with a Garden?

Have you seen this video?

I have now watched it and a couple others in the same vein about 50 times as I am preparing an article for Landscape Middle East on the subject of ‘greening the desert’.   I am curious what you think? I am learning so much about permaculture right now and am quickly becoming fascinated with the subject.  I am curious what you know about all of this?  It all sounds too good to be true, which gives me pause.  Is there really such a simple answer?  what gives you pause or are you a permaculture champion?  should we, as gardeners, all be talking incessantly about natural gardening?  Can we really save the world?  Let’s discuss.

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rochelle greayer

Hi, I'm Rochelle and for 18 years I have worked as a landscape designer, author/writer, and design teacher. I've designed residential and hospitality (for hotels, restaurants, and spas) gardens across the USA and in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. After many years of teaching garden design topics in person, I launched the PITH + VIGOR Boot Camp series in early 2018. Through my blog, social media, and online courses (Garden Design Bootcamp and Planting Design Boot Camp) I aim to help homeowners learn how to confidently design and create home gardens that reflect their own personal and unique style.

5 Comments

  1. Jacqui on December 14, 2009 at 3:00 pm

    When you go to Israel, you can tell where Syria and Lebanon begin because that’s where the trees stop. Say what you wilol of Israel, everybody has enough food and it’s all grown on public land. Where the US puts low-maintenance landscape fillers, Israel puts pomegranate, olive, fig and orange trees.

  2. Joseph Tychonievich on December 14, 2009 at 3:18 pm

    Solve ALL the world’s problems? Yeah, I’m not buying that. But reversing the process of desertification, yes, and increasing desertification is a major problem, and it is exciting to have some ideas about how to solve that. This is a very exciting concept — he shouldn’t have weakened his case by overstating it SO much at the end. Deserts are growing all the time, and ideas about how to turn that around are hugely important. This is a great way to think about how to solve ONE hugely important problem. All the world’s problems? Um… not so much.

  3. Lynn on December 14, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    It was exciting to see the creation of this garden and use of rainwater. To me, it seemed an impossible task. Gardening in the desert with high salt content. Thank you for the video. I am always thrilled to see someone succeed.

  4. louise garwood on December 20, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    Ditto Joseph T., but the practice is truly beyond concept. Returning organic matter to the soil and managing water on site are relatively simple and effective means of building topsoil, remediating erosion problems and improving ground water quality. For more info on permaculture see Toby Hemenways’ link http://patternliteracy.com/sustag.html
    He will be the keynote speaker at 2010 Ecological landscape association conference. His book Gaias’ Garden- Guide to Homescale Permaculture is a good starter on the subject.
    http://www.ecolandscaping.org/conference.html
    I hope to meet some of you at the conference!
    Happy holidays

  5. Caelan MacIntyre on December 16, 2011 at 7:47 am

    I am thinking that it may indeed be possible, at least to significant degrees, to solve all the world’s problems in a garden when you include thinking of gardening in terms of self/local-reliance/self/local-empowerment and resilience insofar as growing your own food, making working the land your job and (therefore) not expending your, often meaningless/useless labour elsewhere and elsehow, such as to some faceless corporatocracy, and (therefore again) not having your labour stolen from you in the form of ‘wage-slave’ tax-deductions to some centralized nation-state and/or dictatorship to help fund their weapons and warfare.

    Of course, in light of Peak Oil, the growing Middle-East unrest/civil war, and Occupy/Deep Green Resistance movements, and so forth, a fair bit more pertinence seems to be lent to this idea of world-problem-solving gardening.

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