Whether you’re raising only backyard chickens or you have entire farm operation going on, you’ll want to use sustainable practices. There are many ways of doing this, but the more you research, the more you’ll start seeing the term “permaculture.” But what, exactly, do people mean by this?
Permaculture is a portmanteau of permanent agriculture and permanent culture. It was coined by Bill Mollison to describe a way of life where people, land, resources, and the environment live in harmony. When using it for agricultural purposes, permaculture is a means of consciously designing your flock and/or farm so that it operates like its own ecosystem.
In general, permaculture is founded on three ethics: earth care, people care, and fair share.
Earth Care refers to efforts to care for the living soil. The state of our soil is essential for a healthy environment, as the soil interacts with all forests, rivers, plants, and animals. Caring for our soil and our planet will help every living thing that exists.
People Care refers to our need for companionship and collaborative efforts to affect change. It begins with ourselves, but then expands to include our friends, families, neighbors, and communities. We have to accept personal responsibility for our actions and reflect on how those actions impart our world and communities.
The final ethic is Fair Share. This represents the idea that we should only take what we need and then share what we don’t need with our community and environment. Too often, people consume, consume, and consume. Fair Share seeks to limit human consumption so that there is enough for everyone and every species.
In our next blog post, we’ll discuss how you can use permaculture when raising backyard chickens. So, stay tuned to Chickens for Backyards’ blog!