"Landsmanship": Light Touch, Heavy Impact

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Paul Newell explains his technique of restoring waterways by minimalist intervention at the Carbpn Farming Conference & Expo held in Orange NSW Australia in November 2009

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  • Australian farmers are of the best in the world, but we can only be as good as we are allowed! We will soon lead the world as we learn and informally teach ourselves to naturally re-sediment and re-hydrate our own flood plains at every scale of our land and water systems. I recommend that we all learn to read our own country and know our own specie first. Natural resource management is exactly that – natural – resource – management; not - artificial - resource - management! The unique factor that agriculture has as a business is: The fundamental inputs are free And rural communities communicate by being one with nature and in not spending money to make money but serving each other. Farmers over many generations have been converted from being producers to being consumers! Natural is the free opposite to artificial support! My position is to help grow a strong, healthy, independent, natural rural sector – never again adversely influenced by people’s policy or business. Artificial thinking has always disturbed food and fiber security in the world creating the cultural divides into rich and poor, good and evil!
  • There is no place in Australia that these pastures will not grow naturally if micro-climating and dormancy breaking will establish them on the alluvium.
  • "Landsmanship": Light Touch, Heavy Impact

    1. 1. THE DISCIPLINE OF LANDSMANSHIP NATURALISING OF THE AUSTRALIAN LANDSCAPE WITH A RE-FORMATION IN LAND USE METHODOLOGY PRODUCTION AND CONSERVATION SIMULTANEOUSLY
    2. 2. Retaining task specific species, plant and animal debris, as nutrient and minerals (carbon) in the landscape induces the accumulation of more biology and more hydrology at low cost. FUNCTIONAL LANDSCAPE STATES Loss / export ---------------------------------------------------------- Gain / retention D ysfunction Time Resilience Nature’s L-O-R-E lore [as well as] People’s L–A–W law as a land use concept Biomass Increase
    3. 4. <ul><li>Currently most of the Australian continent is a dysfunctional, warming and artificially influenced, soil and water dispersing system! </li></ul><ul><li>If locally extinct, task specific self-propagating species are replaced and our own industriousness reduced, </li></ul><ul><li>nature of its own volition </li></ul><ul><li>will accumulate and farm our cooler land and </li></ul><ul><li>fresh water systems collectively </li></ul><ul><li>and connectively </li></ul><ul><li>for us all! </li></ul>
    4. 5. Along my way – plot trials with Dept of Agriculture
    5. 6. Where landsmen are headed More naturally Less Artificially
    6. 7. Reversing thresholds of decay With micro intervention resilience building reverses landscape function and re-soils valley land We can adapt our own land-use practice to nature’s function and process
    7. 8. A VALLEY - in loss and gain cycles over time Side terrace, escarpments Remnants of ever cutting and filling flood plains A valley is a living organism of nature The cellular structure of landscape is the micro valley catchment – as multiples, scaled to macro valley catchments . All landscapes in form and in function are the same at the centimetre scale - as at the kilometre scale .
    8. 9. <ul><li>Restoration activities should be aiming to restore; </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ecological resilience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ecosystem function at all scales </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Connectivity between remnant habitats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The quality and extent of remnant habitats; and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Optimal biodiversity </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>Every picture tells a story! Naturally forming & temporary 10 cm deep ‘leaky weir’ structure Build up of alluvial soil carried by water from up valley side (AGGRADING) Landscape leaking soil, water, nutrients, carbon and overheating due to poor nutrient - mineral cycling and sparse plant density. (DEGRADING)
    9. 10. A RIVER SEGMENT @@@@@@@@@@
    10. 13. Unenclosed Enclosed valley floor Night Camping Day feeding
    11. 14. Water streaming – on the surface of Australian flood plain naturalised landscape
    12. 15. Natural biological ‘chain-mailing” – micro accumulation, semi bare land after rain! Scaled up – micro accumulation vegetated land
    13. 16. Nature makes new hydrated soil over whole valley land and water systems – naturally and for free Over time - landsmanship induces self-replacing hydrated soil over whole farmed valley landscapes – naturally and for free
    14. 17. Warming Dispersing Loss Degrading Normal Drying People-created Infrastructure Cooling Accumulating Gain Aggrading Natural Wetting Nature-created Ecostructure Natural growing back of Australia’s valley floor landscape
    15. 18. Cooling Accumulating Gain Aggrading Natural Wetting Nature-created Ecostructure Warming Dispersing Loss Degrading Normal Drying People-created Infrastructure Nature at work – before and after – similar season and site
    16. 19. Warming Dispersing Loss Degrading Normal Drying People-created Infrastructure Cooling Accumulating Gain Aggrading Natural Wetting Nature-created Ecostructure Micro tsunami - summer storms
    17. 20. Stepping a mountain path stream way. Micro anna-branching a steep floodplain of an ephemeral stream.
    18. 21. Ultimate result with no artificial support – depicting self-repair and grow back as resilience. Regulated, controlled and exported - little resilience left Dysfunctional Functional
    19. 22. Warming Dispersing Loss Degrading Normal Drying People-created Infrastructure Cooling Accumulating Gain Aggrading Natural Wetting Nature-created Ecostructure Our land and water systems Dysfunctional Functional
    20. 23. The discipline of ‘Landsmanship’ develops a re-formation in land use methodology. Naturally reforming artificial thinking naturally reforms decay in landscape -- Urban and Rural -- Infrastructure v Eco-structure People’s art v Nature’s art
    21. 24. <ul><li>Rotational grazing of all volunteer plants – sheep </li></ul><ul><li>Rotational multi-specie cropping – legume/cereal </li></ul><ul><li>30% of yield </li></ul><ul><li>recycled as crop land feedback </li></ul>
    22. 25. Planting time – Oats and Lupin sowing – in rotations Soil histories from Ecological skills in Farming
    23. 26. Natural crop density increases crop competitiveness
    24. 27. No artificial support – No weeds
    25. 28. Landsmanship-farming can be defined as the natural ecological art of increasing more of the locally available self-replacing same - soil, plants, animals and water! Nature is our servant if we are nature’s steward. Landsmen use plants and animals to farm ecologically and farm away landscape decay
    26. 29. <ul><li>Natural or ecological methodology cannot be assisted by artificial fertiliser, herbicides or insecticides – artificial products only depress natural function and process </li></ul>
    27. 30. Sowing, growing, harvesting crop and pasture - creating succession
    28. 31. Pasture sowing by inclusion of seed with grain fed to stock
    29. 32. Growing people food from a feed-lot floor
    30. 33. Winter season biomass recycles to grow summer season meat and vegetables – the summer season reverse is also true
    31. 34. Incising head-cut Sedimentation - vegetation Nature Self-repairs Grow-back is Resilience Revegetated using rotational grazing and re-establishing task specific species
    32. 35. Fragile zone micro oasis intervention to initiate natural resilience self-repair Stock route baulk Head cut
    33. 36. HEAD-CUT SELF REPAIR
    34. 37. Landsman Resilience Self-repair – Growing back Landscape naturally
    35. 38. Re-vegetated using rotational grazing and re-establishing task specific species Sedimentation - vegetation
    36. 39. Growing more of the locally available self-replacing same - naturally Owning the carbon economy
    37. 40. Self filling grassed gully Rising valley floor and Naturally hydrated pasture land Ecology > Technology
    38. 41. Riffle benches – growing with the flow Rising first order valley floors
    39. 42. ‘ New Born Earth’ of a Flood Plain-Valley Floor – in micro scale
    40. 43. Flood plain alluvium accumulates up along its own sand trail stem
    41. 44. Accumulating valley floor incline growing against the flow
    42. 45. Sediments and solutes Incision filled, self-structured and naturally hydrated, convex alluvial flood plain Flood out - new land
    43. 46. Naturally fertilised and naturally hydrated deep soil alluvium Fodder of the cooling alluvium Australia-wide <ul><li>Naturalised deep alluvium – </li></ul><ul><li>with common cane grass </li></ul><ul><li>Holds moisture for longer, </li></ul><ul><li>maintains mean flow for longer, </li></ul><ul><li>strips sediments and solutes from streaming water </li></ul><ul><li>and reduces length of drought, </li></ul><ul><li>. </li></ul>Naturally fertilising and naturally hydrating deep soil alluvium
    44. 47. Natural ecologies are only activated by more biology living – not by more life dying!
    45. 48. Regenerating endangered native white box grassy woodland from bare degraded hill slope
    46. 49. Resilience Salinity Landscape dysfunction Naturally reversed landscape function
    47. 50. SODIC SLUMPING Whole of valley reverse of function to resilient self-repair state Natural regeneration of newly soiled sodic-slumping valley floor
    48. 55. Mining the Atmosphere to farm the Biosphere - continuously
    49. 56. An Australian valley in accumulating gain cycles - over time Convex valley floor Learn to read our own country first
    50. 57. Landsmanship is the stewardship of earth’s land and water systems! PowerPoint prepared by Paul Newell May 2008

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