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Self-Sufficiency Attracts Permaculture Fans

Front-yard gardens and gathering rainwater are two examples of self-sufficiency being explored at the Northwest Permaculture Convergence this weekend. Credit: Pixabay.com
Front-yard gardens and gathering rainwater are two examples of self-sufficiency being explored at the Northwest Permaculture Convergence this weekend. Credit: Pixabay.com
August 28, 2015

EUGENE, Ore. - Self-sufficiency is a Montana value found in permaculture. It's a philosophy being explored today and this weekend at the Northwest Permaculture Convergence in Eugene.

In a world facing many environmental and economic challenges, said coordinator Jan Spencer, more people are deciding it makes sense to increase their self-reliance. If you garden or compost or collect rainwater, he said, you're using "permaculture" and may not even realize it.

"Permaculture is nothing magic," he said. "It's just updating more traditional knowledge with current science about how we take care of our needs in ways that are healthy for people and planet."

Preserving habitat, gleaning, backyard poultry management and tips on storing fruits and vegetables are featured at the event, along with how to incorporate permaculture in urban areas.

What Spencer said he hopes people take away from the weekend is a bigger picture of permaculture as a lifestyle choice - to become more self-sufficient and learn to make, grow and share goods in ways that can be better for the environment and, often, for the family budget.

"This is not just about growing vegetables in your backyard," he said. "The ideals of creating systems that fit within the natural world, within our economic and ecological means - these are also characteristics of permaculture."

This is the eighth Convergence. People from Idaho, Oregon, Washington and Montana attend the event.

The event is at River Road Recreation Center, 1400 Lake Drive, in Eugene. More information is online at northwestpermaculture.org.

Deborah Courson Smith/Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - MT