The root of the modern day accelerated agricultural system came from Great Britain in the early 1700’s when there was a movement called ‘enclosure.’ Until that time the fields of England looked like many strips of land close to one another on which people could farm and grow crops. Then came along enclosure – this made Britain look like it does nowadays – the strips of land were made into fields, so that now from the air it looks like a quilt. That is enclosure. This helped accelerate agriculture as we know it now. At the end of it all though, we have to think about the fact that in all of these years, we have been accelerating the depletion of vital minerals in the soils needed to grow edible plants. In essence, what we are doing is taking more out of the earth than goes back in – in those situations, such as with fossil fuels, where we are using up finite resources. What a lot of people don’t realize also is that nitrogen for fertilizer is made from fossil fuels, so one of the great worries about the end of fossil fuels is the resulting end of modern-day agriculture. None of us want to think about these kinds of things, as we currently have the ability to go into supermarkets to get everything we need. The ability for us to grow edible plants is ending as we continue on our current path of depleting the soils, so we have to stop doing this. Our next blog will be on a possible solution, if any.
Permaculture may just help save the land, as it works on putting more back into the earth than is taken from it, therefore increasing the soil’s ability to grow healthy, edible plants. See you next time 🙂