By Lluis Torrent
Led by Brett Cooper, it is a small, high-yield farm located in the Stroud Valley (in the state of New South Wales), designed and operated following the principles of permaculture.
The initiative began as a project of the Cooper family, who twelve years ago began to apply the principles of permaculture in growing food in their own home. Eventually the family realized they needed more growing space and moved to a larger property, one acre in size (4,000 square meters), where the Limestone Permaculture Farm started. Although Brett Cooper suggested in an article by Treehugger that his project can feed 50 families, the writer of the story suspected that he was actually referring to the fact that it is possible to supply food to 50 families (“feed 50 families with an amount! such a small piece of land would be a positively biblical achievement! ”says the author of the article).
Today, 6 years later, the project has become very popular and the center offers workshops and courses, and exhibits practical on-site examples of how to apply permaculture techniques and passive building systems. In addition, the farm offers a market for organic products of both plant and animal origin. Those responsible for the project affirm that it is a "center of health, happiness and, much more!"
From the ecocosas website they narrate that, with this project, Brett Cooper seeks to achieve self-sufficiency and encourage others to do the same.
"With each passing day we are transitioning to a healthier life, creating a more rewarding and positive future, not only for ourselves but also for our family, friends and the community in general."
On the project website they state that it is possible to replicate their method in your own home. They ensure that you can start in your spare time, while working full time off the farm, with the ultimate goal of transitioning to full dedication to the project later.
At the Limestone farm, all production is based on pesticide-free crops, thanks to the application of a set of techniques based on permaculture that conceive the system in an eco-dynamic way. Among them is the traditional practice of using animal waste to fertilize the land. The farm also has other sustainable solutions, such as the use of tanks to capture rainwater and natural ponds or the installation of solar panels for emission-free electricity generation.
What is permaculture?
Permaculture was developed in Australia by Bill Mollinson and David Holmgren in 1978. The term permaculture comes from the combination of the concepts "Permanent Agriculture" and "Permanent Culture", and is based on the connection and integration of agriculture, people , animals and the environment, to create a sustainable system.
Permaculture is an eco-dynamic design system that works with nature to create productive, regenerative and perennial landscapes. As a design system, permaculture principles and working design can be applied at multiple scales, whether it's on a farm of thousands of square feet, even a balcony garden or home backyard.