“Excerpt from Aug 14, 1999 Vancouver Sun article by Dave Margoshes.
Monsanto, headquartered in St.Louis, makes the popular herbicide Roundup. Farmers all over the Prairies –Schmeiser among them — spray it on their fields, whereupon it kills every-thing growing there. Then they plant.
Using the controversial alchemy of genetic engineering, which has alarmed environmentalists and consumers, Monsanto has developed a canola seed completely immune to Roundup. That means a farmer can spray the herbicide over a planted field, kill all the weeds growing there, but not hurt the crop — as long as it comes from Monsanto’s seed.
The company sells the seed — about half the canola planted in Saskatchewan this year comes from it — but keeps the rights to the DNA itself.
It means that, rather than save seeds from last year’s crop to use this year, as many do — and as Schmeiser traditionally does — farmers have to buy new seed from Monsanto each year.
In order to protect its investment, Monsanto has been vigilant in rooting out frugal farmers who might be cheating and saving seed, or borrowing a bit of seed from neighbours.
Farmers buying Monsanto’s seed must sign a contract promising to buy fresh seed every year. And they must let Monsanto inspect their fields.”
Website: Monsanto vs Schmeiser
“Monsanto & Gene Giants Tighten Control Over Global Seed Stocks
…But corporate control and ownership of seeds – the first link in the food chain – has far-reaching implications for global food security. A single firm, Monsanto, now controls 41% of the global market share in commercial maize seed, and one-fourth of the world market in soybean seeds. The same company’s seeds and biotech traits accounted for 88% of the total area planted in genetically modified seeds worldwide in 2004.”
Website: Organic Consumers Association
Water, water everywhere… but it’s not always drinkable, so the ‘lucky’ few buy and drink water from plastic bottles. Be that as it may, whether you walk on it, swim in or under it, whether you drink it or just like to look and listen to it, water is in so many ways both pleasing and vital for us, so perhaps we need to look more on how we use ‘The Blood of Mother Earth‘
For a starter, when water is contained, it can be described as ‘a single molecule’… with all sorts of interesting and sometimes contradictory eccentricities, for instance it expands when it freezes, and if it’s not the only substance in the universe to do this, it’s one of a very few to do so.
Well you know what they say, “You can lead a horse to water…”
Viktor Schauberger is to Water, what Nikola Tesla is to Electricity. Viktor wrote extensively about the importance of how water should be moved and stored to keep or to enhance it’s vitality… the Water Egg is it seems, in keeping with that idea. Lyall Watson’s (Supernatural) ‘The Dreams of Dragons’ also has an elegant review of Water.
Website: Centre for Implosion Research Shop
Backyard Aeroponics: Self Sustaining Farm for Wisconsin cold
Benjamin Staffeldt grew up on a farm and works in a garden center so when he and his wife Sara moved into a rental home (a duplex), it was only natural he’d want to start farming his (shared) backyard. They began with containers and then bought a kit greenhouse to extend the growing season and were selling to local supermarkets and restaurants, but the heating bills to farm during Wisconsin winters (with temperatures as low as -70°F) was cutting sharply into their profits.
They knew they had to maximize greenhouse space so they decided to grow vertical and to grow differently. They experimented with hydroponics and finally settled on aeroponics. “So aeroponics is similar to hydroponics using water rather than soil, but it’s mist,” explains Benjamin. “It’s a mist that comes on inside the growing chamber, and it comes on every 3 minutes for 10 seconds, it’s a really high oxygen water that’s hitting that root. The method was actually developed and is being used by NASA because it uses so much less water and the speed of growth is much faster.”
To fully customize the growing experience, they added a thermal wrap to their aeroponics towers which helps refract light to help keep the temperature stable within the grow chambers. They’re now growing enough in their 10′ by 12′ greenhouse for farming to be Sara’s full-time job.
They’re hoping to commercialize their hybrid system- what they call Art Garden. It’s geared toward those looking to grow in a cold climate and in a small space (one unit fits into 4 square feet). This is all part of an increasingly customized growing world that Ben hopes might make farmers out of more of us.
1 MILLION pounds of Food on 3 acres
This farm is absolutely amazing. They have 10,000 fish and 500 yards of compost and produce 1 MILLION pounds of Food per year. This has to be the way of the future if we are going to feed the population of Earth as we grow.
The beauty about this type of system is that it could also be utilized on marginal land as well.
Some of the bare facts;
300-500 yards worm compost
3 acres of land in green houses
Grow all year using heat from compost piles.
Using vertical space