After some feedback from the last blog post I thought it would be a good opportunity to give an update on how my little farm is going.
The thing I have tried this year is to just look at changing the planting design. Normally people plant three seeds to a hole then a gap of one meter until the next hole. I have just planted one seed every 25-30cm. It’s one simple idea that I think may have an effect. There’s lots of good scientific reasons why I think this is a good idea… but I won’t bore you with those here!
The picture below shows my little plot on the right compared with a traditional plot on the left. My plot also had the disadvantage of being a first year plot, and apparently first year plots always struggle.
Over my time here I have been thinking that instead of ag development programs teaching systems like “no-till”, maybe we should be aiming for “one idea at a time”. Maybe this slower approach could be more sustainable and an easier step culturally for people to make. It’s hard to find any literature about slow agricultural development. I think it’s what needs to happen for sustainable change and improvement. Everyone wants radical improvement within a three year funding cycle but I don’t think it’s always achievable. The words “slow” and “development” usually only get linked in a negative sense but I think by choosing the simple ideas that have big effects and working on them one by one it could be sustainable.
If you know of any literature about slow development or stepwise development please send it through!