Permablitz Hi

Hawaii's Edible Revolution

PermablitzHI#8: Pearl City backyard transformed

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Back to back blitz action!  20 pairs of hands came together to transform this Pearl City yard into a productive edible garden, just one week after the last blitz.  The mission is a success and Brilana reports that her beets are growing well!

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Photo: Another happy permablitz team, another step towards food security, and many delicious meals to come!

Several truckloads of logs donated by Justin Franzmeier became the walls for no-dig grow beds.  In the front yard, Paul Izak and Michael Broady Jr. lead half the team in building a beautiful U-shaped no-dig bed. 

The U-shape performs the same function as a keyhole, allowing Brilana to reach her veggies without stepping in the garden bed, preventing the soil from being compacted, and eliminating the need for future digging.

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Photo: U-shape no-dig garden bed made from locally sourced materials; Paul sets some of the more thinly sliced logs into the ground to make beautiful stepping stone…logs.

Lilikoi was also added to the fence along the front yard.  This is a simple way to provide much needed privacy, utilizing the existing fence, and requiring little effort.  Permies call this principle “Making the least change for the greatest effect”.

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Photo: A small raised no-dig bed will nurture this lilikoi vine into a living edible/privacy fence – multiple functions!

In the back yard, Allen Fanning and Justin Franzmeier lead the other half of the team in building two double-reach no-dig beds, a trellis, and dug mini banana circles to feed the bananas.  The double-reach bed is an efficient use of space with limited border materials.

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Photo: Double reach no-dig garden bed)

Privacy was also needed in the back, but there was no existing fence to plant onto.  A bamboo trellis was raised and planted with fast-growing malabar spinach.  Banana circles provide moisture by placing a small or medium sized pit in between a circle of bananas.  The pit is filled with yard waste and mulch, which stores moisture much more effectively.  In the tropics, 80% of moisture absorbed by plants comes from decomposing biomass on the surface, or mulch.

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Photo: Bamboo trellis for another edible/privacy wall; Bananas receive mulch pit upgrade

New permaculturist Michael Broady Jr. also shared his knowledge about the wonders of worm tea, and techniques to make a good batch.  Beds were amended with a healthy mix of compost and chicken manure, and covered with a good layer of mulch.  Seeds and starters were planted, and everything sprayed with worm tea.

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Photos: Planting the front garden bed; Mikey adds Nasturtium; Planting the back garden area; Amending with worm tea; Front garden bed finished; Back garden area finished

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