sustainable-farming

My friend Billy died last night. This man was the first farmer in our county to go organic. Hell, he started organically in 1980 before it was really a thing, and has grown the best garlic you can find since forever. He introduced black garlic to the foodies in our community - fabricating an elaborate open air dehydrating system that turned whole bulbs of juicy garlic into fermented black flesh that tasted like heaven. He hipped us all to his fire tonic that he made outside the blessing grip of the health department - a mash of his own cayenne, garlic, and horseradish with organic Hawaiian ginger. An excellent addition to soup, eggs, and seriously the best Bloody Mary enhancer in the world. Our first time truly bonding was on an ice cold early spring morning outdoor market where he was sampling the tonic with tomato juice and he and Ami were sneaking nips from a bottle of Absolut into their own wee cups. They were drinking the sauce with fat Lovage stem straws that made it taste like celery. How do I know this? Because I caught them and when he freaked out thinking he was going to get in trouble, I said the only way you’re in trouble is if you don’t make me one, my brother. Some of you have received jars of that tonic for Christmas. 

He taught hundreds of people how to farm sustainably and he did it for free. He created a composting system that he could have sold, but he just showed people how to do it instead. He supplied multiple farmers markets and a steady four-season CSA membership with gorgeous produce. 

His heart gave out and I’m bereft. 

I didn’t go visit him these recent weeks that he wasn’t at the market because he wasn’t feeling well. I will regret that forever. Ami and I got the news towards the end of the day at work and we both lost our shit for a bit and then sat down and drafted a notice for the market page. The outpouring of love for this man is beautiful and I sure hope he can feel the loving energy flowing his way. 

I’ll find a way to live with feeling like a shitty friend. I’ll make room for this shadow next to my shitty wife and shitty mother shadows on the shelf of my life. They sit next to lots of good things, too. One of those good things is the camaraderie Billy and I enjoyed over a bunch of years, a bunch of burritos, and a bunch of beers. 

See you on the other side one day, my friend. Love you to the moon and back again. 

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natgeo Video @lucalocatelliphoto Here I’m flying my drone inside one of the biggest greenhouse in the world, in the Netherlands. The great indoors provides optimal growing conditions for lettuce and other leafy greens at Siberia B.V. Each one of the greenhouse’s 22 indoor acres yields approx 10 time as much lettuce as traditional outdoor crops and cuts the need for chemicals by 97 percent. How the future of sustainable farming could look like ?

anonymous asked:

what are your general thoughts on wyoming?

Before working at the greenhouse in FoCo, I didn’t understand people’s obsession with tomatoes.  I still don’t understand WHY people are like this, the plants are fussy and unpleasant to work with and tomatoes taste like concentrated mouth sores to me, but as least now I have some inkling of the depths of madness edible nightshades can drive people to*. I watched a pair of octogenarian women get in a fistfight over the last Amish Paste we had that week, another man break down in tears over the fact we were out of Mortgage Lifters until next Teusday, and my own manager wax poetic about recent developments in hybridization.

*I could understand if it was Potatoes, THOSE are amazing

The greenhouse I worked at grew ours in-house, to the tune of four long arched green houses and 40 different breeds of tomato, started in February and staggered to last most of the season. We sold something to the tune of ten thousand mature plants per season, and four times that in starters, the manager explained with pride, the two anatolian-ridgeback mixes drooling happily on my leg during employee orientation.

“Who buys That Many tomatoes?” I asked, naieve. 

My manager’s dark laughter should have been a warning.

During one of the hailstorms in late May, the greenhouse was, briefly, blessedly deserted, if deafeningly loud as the sky hurled balls of ice onto the cheap plastic roof.  My manager had left early that afternoon and so I was left to manage that fifth of the business largely unattended.   I was watering the Fucking Tomatoes when two of the roundest miniature Australian shepherds I’ve ever seen appeared at my feet, wheezing happily.  Looking up, I found a pair of equally gleeful humans behind them, sun-burnt and wearing matching Jimmy Buffet shirts.

WE’D LIKE SOME TOMATOES.” The man bellowed over the roar of hail.

“WE HAVE MANY TOMATOES.” I shouted back, gesturing at the wall of tomatoes behind me.

GREAT!” howled the woman. “CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THEM? WE’VE NEVER DONE TOMATOES BEFORE.

Since I was alone, I spent the next forty-five minutes screaming the attributes of all forty breeds of tomato at them, unable to hear myself speak over the rain, hail and wind, and already dissociating from the noise. I have no idea what I actually said to these people. I might have claimed they were bred on the moon. We got to the end, my throat raw, and fat little Aussies drooling on my shoes.

WHAT DO YOU WANT MARIE?” The man asked.

I DON’T KNOW, THEY ALL SOUND EXCELLENT.” Marie considered. “LETS GET THEM ALL HOWARD.

what.

GOOD IDEA.  WE’LL TAKE FIVE OF EACH.” said Howard.

WHAT.

That’s 200 plants and at $10 a pop, $2000 dollars worth of tomatoes. Why.  I get the extra-large cart out and start loading the tomatoes on. How. I wonder as It takes me three lumber carts to get them all up to the register to scan them.

WE’RE FROM CASPER.” Howard said, like that would explain anything. “THE BIG BLUE HOUSE, YOU CAN SEE IT FROM 25.

Having driven through that part of Wyoming several times to and from Grand Teton, I actually knew about the house in question. “OH YES. WE USE THAT HOUSE TO KNOW WE’RE HALFWAY TO TETON AND TO GET LUNCH.”

YOU SHOULD STOP BY NEXT TIME YOU’RE AROUND.” said Marie.

“OKAY.” I said, for some reason, and helped them out to the parking lot where I discoved they’d apparently driven down in an actual Short Bus, modified to be a sort of camping vehicle, with seatbelts and custom dog-beds for the Fat Aussies, apparently named “Florence” and “Mashmallow”.  I waved cheerfully to them, ears ringing and white lights flashing in my eyes from the continuous noise and feeling like I’d stepped out of my correct timeline.  I found one of the other managers and told them I’d just made them $2k, had a migraine and was going home.


A month and a half later, the seasonal job had ended and I was driving to Washington to see a friend and I happened to be passing through Casper.  In need of a break and eternally curious, I decided to try to find the Big Blue House and see if any of the tomatoes had survived.  It took me a bit to find the correct frontage road but as I was driving by the front yard-

[REDACTED] HOW ARE YOU?” bellowed Marie. somehow spotting and recognizing me. “I’M SO GLAD YOU CAME, COME SEE THEM!

Apparently they just talk like that all the time, but I had a lovely half hour in which Marie and Howard took me on a lovely tour of their experimental self-sustaining farm with the trout pond and chickens and the 200-still-alive-and-apparently-thriving tomato plants.  Given that tomatoes are happiest when hydrated But suffering, Casper turned out to be a good choice.  They’d also gotten some 30 varieties of corn, 15 types of potatoes and 12 types of carrots and Howard was looking into Beans and Squash for next year.

IT WAS VERY NICE OF YOU TO COME OUT.” said Howard.  “HERE, HAVE SOME HAM.

I thanked them, took my three pounds of sustainably-farmed Loud People Ham, and excused myself as I still had to get to Bozeman by that evening and they waved me goodbye from the driveway.

We’re still facebook friends.


(if you enjoy hearing about strange people I meet, please consider supporting my Tip Jar so I can buy groceries)

moana: what happens after

so moana becomes a wayfinder, teaches the lost ways to her people, and becomes chief. she and maui never speak again, because there are rules

they don’t speak for the same reason that the ocean couldn’t just give maui back his hook, for the same reason it couldn’t return the heart itself, for the same reason the ocean couldn’t just simply deliver moana to it’s destination. there is a balance, a give and take, and they must make a decision. they cant talk about this decision of course, but they must make it, so they do. moana sees a red hawk above her for most of her life, but they never speak, never touch.

the ocean never forgets her, never ignores her. it answers her call, loves her, but moana only allows it to move and play with her in the dark of night, where her people cannot see her. she is already a legend, she who fought with maui, who traveled to the land of monsters, who returned the heart of te fiti with her own two hands, who saved the world. many of her people think her adventures a myth, and thats how she wants it - she never speaks of it. she won’t allow them to know how the ocean loves her, for they must follow her because she is their cheif, their master wayfinder, because she can lead them to new lands and new places. she must be followed for what she will do, not what she did.

she travels across the seas, from one end to the other. she starts three more villages, brings her people to new islands flush with greenery and hope and the promise of a future. she learns the earth as well as she knows the sea, because she needs to learn which of these islands can sustain her people, their farming, their building. and she marries. she chooses a man who has broad shoulders and smiles a lot, one who loves the sea. she has three children, and leaves him to raise all of them as she sails to find a new island. she never stops searching the ocean, the wind in her hair, the water below her.

her husband never asks for her heart, and she never gives it. she’s loyal to him, and she brings her people into a new age of discovery and trade. when her eldest son is fully grown, when her hair streaks silver, she steps down and names him chief, allows him to lead their people and does her best not to let her shadow overpower him.

time passes. her husband dies, and she mourns him. her children marry, have children of their own, and each of them love the sea with a ferocity that is born of her blood.

all but one - her eldest child’s eldest child, the girl set to be the next chief, pania

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okja isn't abt veganism:

Okja, as a movie, openly admits no form of commercal food consumption is ethical through Silver, not even agriculture. the message of Okja is not that the consumption of animals is unethical, it’s that the mass production of food through capitalism is unethical. the film itself says our heroine’s favorite food is chicken soup. one of the first actions we see the young heroine take is to take a grown fish, and release the minnow back, hammering home the idea that this is sustainable, and the sustainable consumption of animals is ethical, in this film’s view. so to simply slap your own ideals onto this film is not only inaccurate, it’s a injustice to the filmmaker. okja isn’t about the righteousness of veganism, it’s about the horrors of capitalism and how it compares to sustainable farming

A while back, my boyfriend and I were talking about feeling disconnected from our deities. I gave him some advice that I’d like to repeat here.

First, it is not a vital thing to have a deep, exciting, saga-worthy connection to a deity. They do not have to be your bosom buddy, your confidante, or the most important figure in your life. If you never have any deep, personal interaction with them, and all they are in your life is a distant figure whose stories you find meaningful…that’s okay. That’s enough. That’s wonderful, and amazing, and perfect. 

Mysticism does not have to be the backbone of your faith. To borrow a phrase that I heard often growing up Catholic, not all of us are called to spiritual service; most of us will live and die without ever intimately knowing the will of God (or, in this case, gods).

My advice is to make a list of all the things that first drew you to the deity or deities you honor. If it’s more a case of you feel that they called and you were compelled to answer, make a list of the things that made you want to answer.

Make a list of the traits, associations, and behaviors that made you look at that deity and say, “Yes, this is who I want to hold up as important. This is who I look at and am inspired by.”

Then do what you can to honor those things. If you value a deity’s creativity, do what you can to foster creativity in yourself and others. If you value a deity’s connection to agriculture, tend your own garden, support sustainable farming, or just stop to smell the roses. If you value a deity’s knowledge and wisdom, spend time researching and reading about the things you find interesting. Etc., etc.

These things don’t even have to be formally dedicated to that deity, if you don’t want to make them a big deal. It is enough to just do them, and live your life as a reflection of what inspires you.

You do not have to develop a grand, epic, personal relationship with a deity to honor them. You do not have to even fully believe they exist. It is enough to know what it is about them that you find valuable, inspiring, and worthy of emulation.

This moved me.

The author of the writing below is Dominique Matti she is a writer from Philadelphia and this was originally posted on Those People. The author is also pictured in this post:

Because when I was five, my kindergarten classmate told me I couldn’t be the princess in the game we were playing because black girls couldn’t be princesses. Because I was in third grade the first time a teacher seemed shocked at how “well-spoken” I was. Because in fourth grade I was told my crush didn’t like black girls.

Because in sixth grade a different crush told me I was pretty — for a black girl. Because in 7th grade my predominantly black suburban neighborhood was nicknamed “Spring Ghettos” instead of calling it its name (Spring Meadows). Because I was in 8th grade the first time I was called an Oreo and told that I “wasn’t really black” like it was a compliment.

Because in 9th grade when I switched schools a boy told me he knew I had to be mixed with something to be so pretty. Because in 10th grade my group of friends and I were called into an office and asked if we were a gang, or if we had father figures. Because in 11th grade my AP English teacher told me that I didn’t write like a college-bound student (though I later scored perfectly on the exam).

Because when I volunteered in Costa Rica that summer, I was whistled at and called Negrita. Because when I asked my host father if that was like being called nigger, he said, no, it was a compliment because black women are perceived to be very good in bed.

Because I was a kid. Because I watched from the bleachers while the school resource officer didn’t let my brother into a football game after mistaking him for another black boy who was banned. Because the school resource officer maced him for insisting he was wrong. Because I was suspended for telling the school resource officer he didn’t deserve respect.

Because my senior year boyfriend said nigger.
Because I was one of two black girls in the freshman class at my college. Because at meetings to talk about how to attract more black students, someone suggested that the school attracted a certain demographic (sustainable living, farming, general hippiness) and that maybe black people “just weren’t interested in things like that.”

Because my college boyfriend called me a “fiery negress” as a joke when he ordered for me at a restaurant. Because the boyfriend after that cut me off for saying he was privileged. Because I can’t return to my hometown without getting pulled over.

Because when I got married people assumed I was pregnant. Because people who know I’m married call my husband my “baby daddy.” Because my pregnancy with my son was plagued with videos of black lives being taken in cold blood. Because their murderers still walk the streets. Because the nation sent me a message that my son’s life didn’t matter. Because when Tamir Rice was murdered I curled up on the bed and sobbed, cupping my belly.

Because my son heard me sobbing from the inside. Because they don’t care about us. Because when I was 7 months pregnant my neighbor asked me to help him move a dresser up a flight of stairs. Because I am not seen as a woman. Because I am not allowed to be fragile. Because the nurse that checked me in at the hospital to deliver wouldn’t look my husband in the eye. Because the vast majority of people won’t look my husband in the eye.

Because when the doctors put my son in my arms and I saw that he was as dark as his father, I knew life would be even harder for him. Because he will be regarded the same way I was. Because he will be forced to grow up before he is grown. Because strangers at the store think it’s okay to reach into my son’s stroller and touch him without a word to me. Because we aren’t entitled to boundaries. Because they think we are here for their enjoyment. Because people don’t think we are people.

Because my nephew told me he couldn’t be Spider Man like he wants to because Spider Man is white. Because when he was four he said that he wants to be white so that he can go on a boat like the people on TV. Because I couldn’t save him from that. Because I can’t protect my son. Because I can’t protect myself. Because my stomach sinks whenever I see a police car.

Because when my husband leaves the house at night I am afraid he’ll be killed for looking like somebody. Because I worry that if I went missing like the 64,000 other black women in this nation, the authorities wouldn’t try hard to find me. Because I am disposable. Because I am hated. Because we keep dying.

Because they justify our deaths. Because no one is held accountable. Because I am gas lighted. Because I have been told that by speaking about being oppressed I am victimizing myself. Because our murders are filmed and still pardoned. Because I don’t know what it means to let loose. Because doing the things that my white peers do with ease could cost me my life — trespassing in abandoned buildings, smoking joints, wearing a hoodie, looking an officer in the eye, playing music loudly, existing. Because I am afraid to relax. Because I am traumatized.

Because there isn’t a place in the world White Supremacy hasn’t touched. Because I am trapped here. Because the playing field isn’t leveled. Because I love my skin. Because I love being a woman. Because not hating myself is considered radical. Because I’ve been called racist for defending myself.

Because all the major protests are for cis black men. Because I’ve been told that talking about the women who’ve died is taking away from the real issue. Because I get no break from fighting. Because everything is a struggle. Because my anger isn’t validated. Because they don’t care about my pain. Because they don’t believe in my pain. Because they forgive themselves without atoning.

Because I’m not free. Because the awareness of it permeates everything. Because it’s not ending. Because they teach the children that it’s already ended. Because someone will assert their supremacy over me today. Because they’ll do it tomorrow. Because I want more. Because I deserve better.

theguardian.com
Neoliberalism has conned us into fighting climate change as individuals
Stop obsessing with how personally green you live – and start collectively taking on corporate power. (July 17 2017)
By Martin Lukacs

Neoliberalism has taken this internalized self-blame and turbocharged it. It tells you that you should not merely feel guilt and shame if you can’t secure a good job, are deep in debt, and are too stressed or overworked for time with friends. You are now also responsible for bearing the burden of potential ecological collapse.

Of course we need people to consume less and innovate low-carbon alternatives – build sustainable farms, invent battery storages, spread zero-waste methods. But individual choices will most count when the economic system can provide viable, environmental options for everyone—not just an affluent or intrepid few.

If affordable mass transit isn’t available, people will commute with cars. If local organic food is too expensive, they won’t opt out of fossil fuel-intensive super-market chains. If cheap mass produced goods flow endlessly, they will buy and buy and buy. This is the con-job of neoliberalism: to persuade us to address climate change through our pocket-books, rather than through power and politics.

Eco-consumerism may expiate your guilt. But it’s only mass movements that have the power to alter the trajectory of the climate crisis. This requires of us first a resolute mental break from the spell cast by neoliberalism: to stop thinking like individuals.

anonymous asked:

Hi Archatlas! Would you have any recommendations for vertical farming in high rise buildings/ urban areas? thank you!

Vertical farming is the latest rendering fad in architecture. I am not trying to be incredulous but the technology to make these facilities real, at the moment, is very different from what is shown on architectural renderings. For example, the  world’s largest vertical farm, by AeroFarms, grows without soil, sunlight or water in Newark and the economic viability of it is still uncertain. (above)

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don’t look back in anger (otayuri, 2.5k, teen) :: 

 [life lesson: if some dumb-dumb actually tags you in a callout post on tumblr and says shitty, baseless things about you, don’t engage them.  write petty fic about otabek and yuri as grandpas who live on mars instead!!  you’re welcome.]


At age 54, Victor Nikiforov-Katsuki became one of the first successful test subjects for a series of anti-aging surgeries.  At 37, he had a knee surgery and received hair plugs, but the first in a series of operations at 54 gave him joints and muscle and organs of someone forever young.

Yuri had grimaced at the holoscreen when the news broke, having seen too much of Victor’s face to last several lifetimes.  “I bet he has a robodick too.”

“Yura,” Otabek had said, both fond and resigned from across the dining room table where he was dissecting a grapefruit half.  

At age 87, Victor Nikiforov-Katsuki went out in a blaze of glory deep-dicking his husband (“robodick,” confirmed BuzzfeedMars) on a solo flight to their summer home on Venus, when his elbow slipped and he managed to undo the ship’s airlock.  Neither he nor Yuuri had looked a day over 40.

Yuri’s let his body age. He’s still in good shape for 82; he does water aerobics with a group of old ladies every Tuesday and Thursday, and the atmosphere on Mars has naturally benefited his bones for the past three decades.  But he and Otabek have always been purists otherwise, letting nature take its course with their bodies and never giving into the temptation or philosophy of synthetic body maintenance.  There’s a small, petty part of him from his youth that remains, the purest part of himself that celebrates his body as the ultimate defeat of Victor Nikiforov.  He revels in his own skin, and in Otabek’s, and the thought that when death comes to them in old age they won’t have cheated it, but earned it somehow.  Victor and Yuuri’s parts were supposed to last them until 2089, and by then, who knows.  The idea of them fucking their ancient asses all over the goddamn galaxy still stirs something ugly in Yuri.  

Until Otabek gets sick.  Like, really, really sick.  And he keeps getting sick.  Bladder infections and kidney infections and pissing blood and choked up catheters and too many nights in the hospital instead of their estate, and suddenly there’s a question that goes unspoken between them.

“You’re killing yourself,” Yuri says finally after their third trip to the ER that month.  Otabek had a temperature of 40 degrees and collapsed in their greenhouse.  

“Or I’m just dying,” Otabek says.  “I’m old.”

“Bullshit,” Yuri says.  Otabek still skates sometimes on weekdays when the rink is empty, because he was blessed with superhuman cartilage in his knees and the back of a titan.  He just does simple laps to relieve stress while Yuri watches from the stands, long since given up the ice out of self preservation.  But Otabek has never had to, because Otabek has always been healthy and strong.  There’s nothing else to be said or done, because, “bullshit, you’re not allowed to die.”

 “I don’t think that’s how dying works,” Otabek replies.  He’s smiling and there’s acceptance in the smile that feels damning.   

“Fuck you,” Yuri says.  “The doctors have given you dozens of options.  There’s– technology, there’s–there’s–”

 “I thought you didn’t believe in that,” Otabek says.

 “Don’t let my pride kill you, Christ, Beka,” Yuri says, feeling impossibly young even with his knobbed knuckles and crooked fingers wrapped around Otabek’s own, mindful of the saline drip and hiding the biggest of his liver spots.  “If you don’t live through this, I’ll kill you.”

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