Restoring Degraded Land With Weeds

“When we started our farm, there were so many prickly “touch me nots” (impatiens or “shy plant)) that we were obliged to wear shoes at all times. Now, with the help of nutrient cycling, our garden has been transformed into a BAREFOOT GARDEN. Here’s how…”

Search our blog for other stories about restoring degraded land. Not only is degraded land often very affordable for homesteading, it also provides natural builders/permaculturists an opportunity to help restore the earth. I’m guessing that millions of acres fall into this category. (Let us know if you have time to look up the actual number.) Most of this land has been destroyed by modern industrial agriculture. The land eventually peters out after years of mining the soil, using herbicides, pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and plowing and tilling that destroy soil organisms. Restoring degraded land doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process. As you can see in the video above it took Jagannath only about 10 months to turn a good sized part of his farm into a forest garden oasis. His land was almost pure sand when he started! (See second video linked below.) He brought in almost no outside resources to demonstrate farming practices that even the poorest farmers can use.

Note: If you’re interested in doing this, I’d suggest acting sooner rather than later. As word spreads about how you can convert ‘waste land’ into productive farming land then the price of land will inevitably rise. Also, I’d recommend looking around carefully to find what works best for you. And do lots of research! Every site is different.

Natural Farmer – Barefoot Gardening
Natural Farmer – building soil with weeds (From Sand to Soil in 5 Months)
Related comment by Wayne Stephen at forum:
Funny, I was just reading the JLHudson, Seedsman catalog. Quote regarding Milk Thistle {Silybum Marianum} “California ranchers claim it loosens hard, compacted soil, and make their own “clod buster” from chopped plants soaked in 55 gallon drums of water.”

2 thoughts on “Restoring Degraded Land With Weeds”

  1. Please explain “impatiens” being “prickly”. Just to confirm my understanding, I “googled” impatiens and got what I expected — flowers, nothing prickly.

    • They’re super prickly. Maybe impatiens is a family of plants. Search ‘shy plant’ or ‘touch me not’ in google images to see photos.


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