The permaculture movement seems to be coming into its own. It’s easy to see why. In a world of climate change and destruction of nature, the tenants of permaculture, involving community sharing, earth care, and people care, are more important than ever. It may seem intimidating, but many of permaculture proponents recommend starting slow and building up your skills over time. It doesn’t have to be a huge worldview shift. There are steps even the most dedicated urbanites can take to start a sustainable permaculture project in their own area.
Hugelkultur, meaning "hill culture" in German, is an agricultural principle using plant and tree biomass to mimic woodland decomposition. Typically, large mounds of logs and plant material are layered directly on the ground and then covered with a layer of soil to make a steep-sided raised bed. Some Hugelkultur beds can reach 6 feet tall or more, though it is also possible to keep the height near ground level. Hugelkultur has been utilized for centuries in Germany and has recently found favor with the permaculture movement and organic gardeners due to its sustainability and low impact.
There are very few logical reasons why anyone with a backyard or garden shouldn't be composting. In addition to promoting a more bountiful and healthier harvest, the process also helps prevent the propagation of landfills, which are systematically destroying many of Earth's natural ecosystems. Biodegradable waste typically makes up 30% of a household's outgoing garbage. Simple re-appropriation cuts down food expenses, as well as garden and lawn maintenance costs.