Permaculture farms don't have to be big they have to do permaculture
3-5 hectares of land is enough for a permaculture farm (smallholding). That is what is needed for a family in Denmark to live with a normal income while also being self-sufficient. If a permaculture farm is 3- 5 ha in Denmark, it is large enough for a normal sized family, but everything must then be productive and the biological cycle has to function 100%.
In a permaculture smallholding, possibilities are endless
For the owner of a permaculture smallholding, it is very important to know what is possible in a permaculture smallholding and how it can be done. It is important to understand that there will often be multiple smaller biological cycles (units) each with different animals and plants (elements). The whole thing shall then be assembled in a large symbiotic biologically cycle covering the whole smallholding.
When a small holding permaculture is started up, there is always the case of a multiple-stage start-up, that happens over a longer period. So when making permaculture design plan a flow plan and implementation plan is made simultaneously.
It is quite clear that permaculture smallholdings are very different. The individual elements must always be placed at the right place, seen from the potential landscape and nature and in relation to other units in the total biological cycle. In the following, I will try to shed light on the most common topics, issues and opportunities around a permaculture smallholding.
Nature's Biological Cycle
At a permaculture, smallholding is about producing as many different foods as possible (many small streams). Selecting more production lines (units), each of which in itself, is a small project with biological elements and the same time a part of the total biological cycles throughout permaculture smallholding.
Soil, water, animals, and plants must fit together in all units of the smallholding and support each other. There must be places where internal products (manure, plant material, etc.) are processed and waiting for the application. Everything must always be a part of the production and feed into the biological cycle.
A permaculture smallholding may be the most versatile and productive form of food production. But only if the biological cycle of plants, animals, water, and soil are in the center it will come to run 100%. In all permaculture smallholdings, it is essential to re-establish the natural biological cycles by making many units, with as many items as possible.
Animals, Plants, Soil, and Water should be seen as living elements of a permaculture smallholding.
In order to restore the natural biological cycles, use as many perennial plants as possible in the form of trees, shrubs, herbs, and vegetables. All cultured in 7 to 9 layers as it can be viewed in a natural forest. It is also important that as many animals as possible are part of a permaculture smallholding. The animals must have direct or indirect access to the ground throughout the smallholding at the times where it is obtaining the most benefits.
The creation of an aquatic environment
The creation of an aquatic environment by making lakes everywhere where it is natural. The lakes have to be connected to each other, through horizontal channels and overflow from one lake to another lake in a closed water circuit. The lakes and the channels must be used as storage and transport of energy and nutrients and is a very important part of the permaculture smallholdings biological cycle, which is the basis of all permaculture smallholdings.
The food production continues to rise for 20 to 30 years
Basically, it's all about rebuilding soil fertility through the soil food web. It can only be done by making a food productive copy of what nature would do by itself if the land was left untouched. It takes time, but not so long as it did just a few years ago. By using the latest biological knowledge, techniques, and technologies, some permaculture unit is established and in operation in just two to three years.
A permaculture smallholding can be made to work as a biological cycle in 4 to 5 years. However, for many of the plant elements in the different units, production will continue to rise over the next 20 to 30 years. The area for a permaculture smallholding can be 2 hectares or more. But it's more the use of the area than it is the area that determines whether it is a garden or a smallholding.
Cows, pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, geese, rabbits, etc. is at the smallholding
Under Danish law, one can have a legal number of livestock on a hectare, and all animals should be included. So if you have 5 Ha and want to have 5 dairy cows and maybe keep a few calves, there is not much room for more large animals, such as goats, pigs, and sheep. The same kind of laws is found in many countries. It is therefore important to think about diversity and decide in advance what the ultimate goal is.
Permaculture provides many other examples of the need for coherence between the animals and the land so it is not just about legislation. It is particularly about the biological cycle to function optimally. This means that there must be a connection (biological balance) between soil, plants, animals, and animals. So if you want cows so it's a good idea also to have chickens and maybe both sheep and goats to get the optimal care of grazing areas.
In nature, there are always many different animals on land and the animals often have a symbiotic relationship. It may be that they prefer different grasses, herbs, and shrubs, thus maintaining the optimum growth of all plants and thus a greater total biomass production.
Seen through the eyes permaculture it means if you want an area with fruit trees so there must also be bees the right animals and other plants that attract beneficial insects and can be grown other utility and food-producing plants between the fruit trees.
A fruit orchard also forms the basis for several elements that can promote both production and quality of the fruits while they even provide a dividend. Pigs, chickens, sheep, and goats can under the right circumstances be useful and productive e elements in an orchard.
A permaculture unit is never monoculture, but always polyculture with many different plants and animals that work together in the biological cycle.