|Ryan Harb, right of the President|
Harb's success is the transformation of a grass lawn next to the Franklin Dining Commons into a sustainable ecosystem, also known as permaculture. It took two years and many volunteers.
As Chief Sustainability Coordinator for Auxiliary Services and Enterprises, at UMass Amherst Harb and his team are growing fruit, nuts, vegetables, greens and flowers. He defines the garden as "Sustainability involving people working together to create ecological and edible landscapes."
There is a permaculture farm at Hampshire College and one in Northampton at the Meadows. Both provide some food in a sustainable ecosystem with no tilling, no lawn and no weeding. This is accomplished by working within the ecosystem.
Plants can be inoculated with fungi to promote resilience and growth. Pest resistant marigolds and chives are planted are also part of the landscape. As one grower put it, the real time is setting up the garden, once that is done, there is virtually little to do when permaculture is part of the landscape.
|Grandfather of Natural Faming of Japan, Masanobu Fukuok|