Archive for Gardening

How can we adapt to Climate Change?

When I was a kid most trees lost their leaves in mid October with the Oak loosing its leaves before Bonfire Night now Oak & Hazel do not start to loose their leaves until mid December. This year the Oak came into leaf in March 6 weeks before its pre-industrial companion the Ash. The change in growing seasons is not all good news as summers get hotter & dryer grasses including wheat for bread stop growing.

The changes in volcanic activity & solar spot activity (which causes solar wind to disrupt Earth Ionosphere shield and let more rays in) & the changes in the Earth’s orbit account for 80 to 90% of the observed temperature changes. So some change is inevitable so we need to adapt.

Politicians & bureaucrats want a simple “One Size Fits All” so Mrs Thatcher chose CO2 & set up the IPC and changed the way University Research was funded (to the number of times an article is published (ie more sensational or extreme findings) instead of the quality of peer reviews of the science / evidence) to promote it.

CO2 is produced by the process of breathing so makes an ideal tax subject as everyone breathes.

Plants use the energy from the sun to produce Oxygen & to grow in the reverse process of Breathing called Photosynthesis

6CO2 + 6H2O + Energy = C6H12O6 + 6O2

The ice core studies showed that in the past increases in CO2 lagged hundreds of years behind temperature increases. However the release millions of years worth of stored CO2 in just a few decades must have some effect.

It has been known for over 100 years (thanks to aerial photography & saterlight images) that every change in landuse (– including switching from organic farming to growing the same crops under unsustainable modern chemical production methods favored by the banks) produces detectable changes.

Bare ground & roads & buildings of non-natural materials (eg brick, concrete, steel or glass) absorb the sun’s energy as heat during the day & radiates most of it back into the atmosphere at night making towns 4c warmer than the surrounding countryside which is why some of the temperature readings are adjusted over time.

As Party Politicians & bureaucrats are not accountable & do not use science or review evidence in their decision making they want to pretend that the Climate Change we are experiencing is caused by CO2 instead of their policy of subsidizing polluters & creating economic bubbles to boost the profit of a few at the expense of all.

Climate Change can be solved by:

  1. introducing True Cost & Benefit Analysis into decision making
  2. and by transplanting Holly & Laurel from the woodlands (where they are shading out biodiversity) to increase Health & Safety of roads by planting down the center to reduce glare for drivers & to filter out the poisons
  3. Making government accountable
  4. Stop subsidizing polluters via the tax system
  5. Make produces/sellers responsible for all the waste they produce & the quality of the products (ie designed to last)
  6. Switching to Wellbeing as the primary measure of society instead of the system of Fake Accounting called GDP
  7. Requiring all land managers to leave the land & biodiversity in a healthier state than it was 10 years ago
  8. Design communities to need less commuting & to walk or cycle
  9. Design buildings & roads to be carbon neutral including in construction – growing plants on walls, roofs & other wasted areas
  10. Taking personal responsibility for the choices we make that either harm our Life-support system (boosting the profit for a few) or benefits us.

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Snow of 5th Jan 2010 the Worst or Best for 30 Years?

As a Gardener, I understand Nature so know  that although the deep snow we have had over the 5th may be the heaviest for 30 years it does not make it a bad thing or a good thing because that is a value judgement so is solely dependent on the story you create to make sense of your life.

The deep snow did flatten some plants & break a few branches off un-healthy Y shaped plants – so now you have the opportunity to turn them back into healthy A shaped by using hedge laying techniques to reduce the stress of plants. The snow is unlikely to have done any real damage to plants – even to the daffodils; pansy or hazel trees that were already in flower because snow is a great insulator (which is why Eskimos build their homes out of snow instead of stone) so protected the plants from the low temperatures.

As Councils were unprepared  for the Winter weather hundreds of schools were closed and roads were blocked & the trains did not run so people could not get to their jobs. Yet was there any real suffering? The vast majority of people work in jobs they do not enjoy for the benefit of a few subsidized polluters because that is the way society has been run since 1066. Maybe a few house bound people – in areas where the residents think life happens to them & that others will sort it out – got neglected more. However in areas were the residents realise they are responsible for creating the life they want – the snow made the communities stronger

  • forced people to think (if only briefly) about what is important instead of just doing the same things
  • as we worked together to dig routes for cars to get out
  • the manager of the local pub used his 4*4 to help the house bound get food in
  • while the kids (of 3 to 90 years old) got creative building snowmen; ice castles, igloos  & tobogganing with what ever they could find -(bags, tin trays, boards, skis etc) instead of being stuck doing pointless things that they do not enjoy because society is based on the lies that business creates wealth and wealth can buy health & happiness.

The snow was the deepest for 30 years or so yet whether it was the worst winter weather or the best depends on your ability to enjoy the moment instead of giving your power to create your future over to things you can not change like the past.

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Why Plants Make Us Happier & Healthier & Thus More Productive

Plants, just like people, come in all shapes & sizes and have different requirements & different qualities – and when placed in the right position will benefit us. Plants can insulate us from annoying noises that surround us & thus aid concentration on the important things in life, while also filtering out the harmful things like the electromagnetic radiation from the computer, Xerox or printer. Plants also produce the Oxygen we need to breathe.

Learning to recognize the signals when plants are not having their needs met eg drooping leaves & flowers when short of water, will also help us learn to recognize what is going on around us so we can tune into the visual clues to what the person is really saying as only 7% of communication is verbal while 55% is in the body language and the rest is in the tone of the voice. Learning to concentrate on needs that are exterior to our ego, even for short periods of time, will allow our true self to shine out as well as improving our communication and care for others.

Accepting a plant is assuming a new responsibility to care for another living being that helps us. Plants can only give us the Oxygen we need to breathe if, like all living things, they are not poisoned and have the right amounts of water & energy (from sunlight & food) and are in a supportive environment in which to thrive.

Naturally occurring plants that are native to the area will be more in tune with living in the area because they have co-evolved with the climate. However the man made climate change of the past 200 years due to urbanization & the release of millions of years worth of stored CO2 by the mining of fossil fuels and peat (a commercial sterile growing medium for plants) together with the plundering of the forests to provide just one season of grazing for the American burger trade is causing the world’s food production to fall as plants can not evolve as fast as the climate is changing

Taking the time to care of plants will can get rid of stress, it is scientifically proved because it breaks your routine so helps to put things into proper prospective -allowing your creativity and optimism to shine through when plants help you relax. Gardeners tend to live longer healthier & happier lives than non-gardeners because we realize that we need to nurture the seeds of our plans before we can enjoy the benefits of our efforts, and things happen that we can not control so we concentrate on the things we can change- our own thoughts & actions.

Stress is the biggest killer in modern society because it is unending. The human body has evolved over millions of years to respond to stress in the natural way of transferring blood & Oxygen from the skin & the rational thought section of the brain to the mussels used in the flight or fight reaction. Studies show that the sight of a beautiful scene will reduce stress (of visual people only) by reminding us of the fact we can have good things if we choose to. Different studies have demonstrated that the regular contact with real living  plants -especially aromatic plants like rosemary & lavender – reduces mental exhaustion and that taking care of plants can be the most efficient method to improve the emotional and physical general condition of people under stress. Plants have a serene effect, they reduce stress and relax muscles to improve the mood people taking care of the plants are in.

Plants are really needed in every workspace as the oxygen generated by plants creates enhanced mental agility and reduces the stress of working for someone who treats everyone how he wants to be treated although 97% of the population want to be treated in different ways.

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