Get your hands dirty this spring and delve into permaculture

Why are we spending money on fruits and vegetables at the grocery store that are not only low in nutrients and minerals (due to poor, overworked soil and GMOs), are laden with chemicals from fertilizers, and have a high carbon footprint from being shipped across the country?

With permaculture, not only can we grow our own nutritious food, we can also learn to "live with the land", thus improving the crop output, soil quality, and the overall agricultural environment.

[image-1]That's where Robert Segundo comes to our rescue: Segundo will be presenting a series of permaculture design courses starting in April and continuing throughout the summer. The course will instruct on the permaculture practices of reusing and renewing the land (yes, here in Florida) and introduce aspiring gardeners the importance of growing their own food and their role in nature.

The courses will take place on Saturdays starting on April 3 from 12-2 pm, at Twigs 'n Leaves Nursery- 1013 Dr. Martin Luther King St. South in St. Petersburg. Classes are $35 per person. For further information or a class schedule or 727-793-5766, and on our Green Community Calendar.

As cliche as this sounds, "Spring has sprung" and we're finally seeing more green sprouting up and saying goodbye to the chilly weather. Spring also means more people will be getting outside to exercise their green thumbs. Whether you're a gardening enthusiast or a novice wanting to get your hands dirty, why not look into the practice permaculture gardening?

Permaculture is something we've been hearing more and more about lately in our Green Community. In case you're not familiar with the term, permaculture is finding the right way to work with the local environment to create sustainable living by creating sustainable biosystems that provide for their own needs and recycle their own waste. This means planting species that are native to an area because they will work with the surrounding ecosystem to produce high yields and help neighboring plants thrive - all without the use of chemical fertilizers since the soil will nourish itself.

Basically, permaculture just makes sense. "Gardening has a reputation of hard work for little return," said Robert Segundo, local Certified Permaculture Designer with Fire of Hope, LLC. "By planting mindfully and working with natural environments you can decrease the amount of work inputs while increasing what your garden can produce."

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