144 episodes

Welcome everyone to the first episode of a brand new season of the Abundant Edge podcast. I can’t believe I’m starting the fourth year of this little pet project that I had three years ago after I had just moved to Guatemala and was wrapping up an internship on bamboo building, and now here I am, having moved to north eastern Spain and with more than 50 thousand of you incredible folks tuning in to this show every month from all around the world. I’m so happy to be able to keep this show going and I’m really excited to start a new season with a brand new website that makes it easier than ever to search for topics, names, categories and really anything you want to help you access great information from more than 140 interviews in our archives. I really encourage you all to check it out if you haven’t yet, and of course, if you enjoy the content of this show, please consider leaving us a review on iTunes or whichever service provider you use. More than anything this helps me to get these episodes out and into the ears of more people, and that means more people equipped with the knowledge and techniques to begin to heal and regenerate this planet.

In this interview Neal fills me in on how the animal enterprises that were just taking shape while I was there are becoming more consistent and regimented and how they feed the other enterprises on the farm like the cafe/restaurant, the permaculture courses, the development of the hostel space and much more. They’ve also made some important alliances in their community and around Guatemala that are helping them reach more people in their village in their goal to facilitate a better market for high quality local farm products and a better price for wholesale goods. We also talk about some of the promising big design projects that Neal is taking on which have the potential to regenerate large acreage of damaged land in some of the most biodiverse regions of Peten in the north of the country.

As I mentioned, this episode wraps it up for season 3. 2019 was a really major year for me personally and for the audience of this podcast. Together with you listening we more than doubled the subscribers to this show and I got so much beautiful and heartfelt feedback from so many of you that it really renewed my faith that this show is bringing the information and the inspiration that many of you are looking for. So thank you sincerely to everyone who has supported this show and sent feedback this year. Thanks to New Society Publishers especially for their collaboration and support and for making it possible to provide this content without any long pleas for patreon donations. Being able to advocate for an organization with integrity and strong ethics means the world to me. Season 4 of The Abundant Edge podcast will kick off strong again with brand new episodes starting on February 7th but stay tuned because I’ll be reposting the most popular shows from this last year again until I return.

The Abundant Edge Oliver M Goshey

    • How To

Welcome everyone to the first episode of a brand new season of the Abundant Edge podcast. I can’t believe I’m starting the fourth year of this little pet project that I had three years ago after I had just moved to Guatemala and was wrapping up an internship on bamboo building, and now here I am, having moved to north eastern Spain and with more than 50 thousand of you incredible folks tuning in to this show every month from all around the world. I’m so happy to be able to keep this show going and I’m really excited to start a new season with a brand new website that makes it easier than ever to search for topics, names, categories and really anything you want to help you access great information from more than 140 interviews in our archives. I really encourage you all to check it out if you haven’t yet, and of course, if you enjoy the content of this show, please consider leaving us a review on iTunes or whichever service provider you use. More than anything this helps me to get these episodes out and into the ears of more people, and that means more people equipped with the knowledge and techniques to begin to heal and regenerate this planet.

In this interview Neal fills me in on how the animal enterprises that were just taking shape while I was there are becoming more consistent and regimented and how they feed the other enterprises on the farm like the cafe/restaurant, the permaculture courses, the development of the hostel space and much more. They’ve also made some important alliances in their community and around Guatemala that are helping them reach more people in their village in their goal to facilitate a better market for high quality local farm products and a better price for wholesale goods. We also talk about some of the promising big design projects that Neal is taking on which have the potential to regenerate large acreage of damaged land in some of the most biodiverse regions of Peten in the north of the country.

As I mentioned, this episode wraps it up for season 3. 2019 was a really major year for me personally and for the audience of this podcast. Together with you listening we more than doubled the subscribers to this show and I got so much beautiful and heartfelt feedback from so many of you that it really renewed my faith that this show is bringing the information and the inspiration that many of you are looking for. So thank you sincerely to everyone who has supported this show and sent feedback this year. Thanks to New Society Publishers especially for their collaboration and support and for making it possible to provide this content without any long pleas for patreon donations. Being able to advocate for an organization with integrity and strong ethics means the world to me. Season 4 of The Abundant Edge podcast will kick off strong again with brand new episodes starting on February 7th but stay tuned because I’ll be reposting the most popular shows from this last year again until I return.

    how to grow a mature Native forest in just a few years, with afforestt founder Shubhendu Sharma: 146

    how to grow a mature Native forest in just a few years, with afforestt founder Shubhendu Sharma: 146

    Welcome to the last interview in the Reforestation and Agroforestry series. We’ve covered so many important aspects of this topic in 10 interviews over 4 months. I’ve spoken to homesteaders regenerating cloud forests in tropical climates, tech companies with more than 20 tree planting initiatives around the world, agroforestry and orchard advocates and everything in between, and this last conversation is the icing on the cake. If you’ve ever wondered how to restore a mature native forest in record time and on a modest budget, this is the episode for you, because today I’ll be speaking with Shubhendu Sharma, a former automotive engineer for Toyota who has planted both small and large native forests around the world through this company Afforestt which specializes in making natural forests of native trees. 







    In this interview Shubhendu talks about how he applied his engineering mindset to systematize accelerated native forest planting and create open source manuals that anyone can access and follow. He explains in detail how a dense mature forest can be planted, even in a desertified region, by taking care of soils, selecting the right species, and planting densely. 







    Towards the end of this interview you’ll hear Shubhendu and I talking about the possibility of the launch of a new kickstarter campaign to create a video series on how to plant your own native forest in record time anywhere in the world. I’m happy to announce that the kickstarter is now live and open for donations. If, by the time you’re done listening to this episode you can see how much value there will be in making this information available in an easy to follow video format then I highly encourage you to follow the link in the show notes for this episode and donate whatever you can to help make this happen. I’ve already put in my donation and am really excited to start planting in my own area of Spain. No matter where in the world you live or work, reforestation could have a big impact on regenerating the health and biodiversity of your ecosystem.







    Resources:







    https://www.afforestt.com/







    Support the Afforestt video tutorial project on Kickstarter today!









    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/shubzsharma/video-tutorials-to-make-your-own-forest?ref=user_menu









    Miyawaki Method explained







    Open Source documents on how to grow your own native forest

    • 1 hr 7 min
    Mark Shepard on how to make the most of your water on any farm

    Mark Shepard on how to make the most of your water on any farm

    Welcome everyone to the first episode of a brand new season of the Abundant Edge podcast. I can’t believe I’m starting the fourth year of this little pet project that I had three years ago after I had just moved to Guatemala and was wrapping up an internship on bamboo building, and now here I am, having moved to north eastern Spain and with more than 50 thousand of you incredible folks tuning in to this show every month from all around the world. I’m so happy to be able to keep this show going and I’m really excited to start a new season with a brand new website that makes it easier than ever to search for topics, names, categories and really anything you want to help you access great information from more than 140 interviews in our archives. I really encourage you all to check it out if you haven’t yet, and of course, if you enjoy the content of this show, please consider leaving us a review on iTunes or whichever service provider you use. More than anything this helps me to get these episodes out and into the ears of more people, and that means more people equipped with the knowledge and techniques to begin to heal and regenerate this planet. 







    That’s enough of the prologue, let’s jump into today’s episode. For those of you who’ve been following the last handful of episodes you know that we’re deep into an ongoing series on reforestation and agroforestry, and though most of the previous interviews have been with people working directly to plant trees and restore native forests, I decided to switch the focus for this session for two important reasons. The first, is that without good soil and access to water very few things will grow or at least they’ll take much much longer to get established. The second, is that Mark Shepard, founder of New Forest farm in Wisconsin and the author of Restoration Agriculture, has finally just released his much awaited second book called Water for Any Farm which outlines his revolutionary expansion on P A Yeoman’s original classic called Water for Every Farm. 







    In this interview I got to speak with Mark about how his decades of experience on his own farm as well as designing and consulting on farms all over the country helped him to solve some of the shortcomings from the original keyline design system. We start by talking about how the mismanagement of land and water has created the conditions we have today all over the world where topsoil is constantly eroded and water quickly becomes a destructive force rather than a rejuvenating one if it's left to run over naked landscapes. Mark goes into a lot of detail to describe how to read your landscape and identify key points that can be used as references for keylines to direct water all across your land in a way that slows it down and rehydrates it. We talk about what machinery and tools he recommends for major earthworks, the installation of different types of ponds, building soil over large acreage, and much more. I get sent a lot of books to look over and review before speaking with authors and I often don’t have time to read them very thoroughly, but this one, Water for Any Farm I really took the time to understand because of the incredible potential that this system has for increasing the productivity and resilience of any landscape, not just from an agricultural perspective. Adjusting the water harvesting capacity of your terrain can have an important impact on any kind of regeneration project and help with weathering severe climate events too. It’s especially relevant to the ongoing series on reforestation and agroforestry because the earthworks method outlined in the book is how Mark was able to regenerate a damaged farm surrounded by monoculture corn crops into the highly productive oak savannah mimicking ecosystem based around the pillars of hazelnut and chestnut orchards.I highly recommend yo

    Checking in with Granja Tz’ikin and the season finale, with Neal Hegarty: 144

    Checking in with Granja Tz’ikin and the season finale, with Neal Hegarty: 144

    Here we are! The end of 2019 and season three of this podcast. For those of you who’ve been following this show for a while you know that I went through a lot of big changes this year, most notably a big move from the permaculture farm startup that I worked on for for about 16 months in Guatemala. From there I took some big trips through southern Mexico and the US and a bit in Canada to where I finally settled down in the Catalonia region of north easthern Spain. Though I live really far away from where I started the year, I thought it’d be a good chance here at the end of the season to check in with Neal Hegarty, the co-owner of Granja Tz’ikin in Guatemala, where this year began for me, to see how things have progressed and developed since I moved away. I know a lot of you followed along on our journey through the regenerative round table sessions of last season as we planned and started building out the design for the farm, so hearing how the design is starting to mature should be a good update.



    In this interview Neal fills me in on how the animal enterprises that were just taking shape while I was there are becoming more consistent and regimented and how they feed the other enterprises on the farm like the cafe/restaurant, the permaculture courses, the development of the hostel space and much more. They’ve also made some important alliances in their community and around Guatemala that are helping them reach more people in their village in their goal to facilitate a better market for high quality local farm products and a better price for wholesale goods. We also talk about some of the promising big design projects that Neal is taking on which have the potential to regenerate large acreage of damaged land in some of the most biodiverse regions of Peten in the north of the country.

    As I mentioned, this episode wraps it up for season 3. 2019 was a really major year for me personally and for the audience of this podcast. Together with you listening we more than doubled the subscribers to this show and I got so much beautiful and heartfelt feedback from so many of you that it really renewed my faith that this show is bringing the information and the inspiration that many of you are looking for. So thank you sincerely to everyone who has supported this show and sent feedback this year. Thanks to New Society Publishers especially for their collaboration and support and for making it possible to provide this content without any long pleas for patreon donations. Being able to advocate for an organization with integrity and strong ethics means the world to me. Season 4 of The Abundant Edge podcast will kick off strong again with brand new episodes starting on February 7th but stay tuned because I’ll be reposting the most popular shows from this last year again until I return.

    • 46 min
    Turn your orchard into a resilient ecosystem with these steps! From Stefan Sobkowiak of Miracle Farms: 143

    Turn your orchard into a resilient ecosystem with these steps! From Stefan Sobkowiak of Miracle Farms: 143

    We’ve covered so many different ways to approach reforestation, both with native species and mixes of natives and orchard trees. In today’s session, Oliver wanted to focus on fruit orchards and he got to speak with the wizard behind Miracle Farms and the film, “The Permaculture Orchard” Stefan Sobkowiak. Oliver has been a fan of Stefan’s work for a while and he has spent a lot of time on his excellent youtube channel where he offers tons of tutorials and solutions to practical aspects of managing a whole ecosystem around his orchard enterprise.



    In this interview we break it all down from the beginning, from how Stefan began to look for land in the challenging climate of Canada all through his great advice for how to get started from selecting species, building soil, propagating trees and growing from there. We also go into how Stefan leverages nature’s tools to create a healthy and balanced ecosystem that not only brings more resilience to the operation but helps to reduce labor and external inputs. Towards the end we also unpack some invaluable advice on how to make meaningful money through innovative marketing strategies so you can make a respectable living on a modest amount of land.

    We cover a really wide range of topics and Stefan really knows his stuff so don’t forget to check out the links in the show notes for this episode and maybe even keep a notebook around for good measure.

    Why forests are key to the future of agriculture, with Darren Doherty, co-author of the Regrarian’s Handbook: 142

    Why forests are key to the future of agriculture, with Darren Doherty, co-author of the Regrarian’s Handbook: 142

    The last time I caught up with Darren Doherty for this podcast was back in season two. We talked a lot about his background and entry into ecological agriculture and how that journey informed his development of the Regrarian’s platform and outlook on the potential of regenerative farming. I recently caught up with him again to investigate the new chapter of the Regrarian’s handbook which he and his team just released. Chapter 5 of the 10 in the book which are being relseased one by one in digital format on their website focuses on forests and all the configurations that they come in. Since I’ve covered many of the first few topics from the chapter in other episodes in this ongoing series on reforestation and agroforestry I wanted to get Darren’s take on specific management techniques in a commercially productive woody perennial system. This covers more than just trees and includes plants of that classification at nearly every level of a forest ecology such as bushes and understory crops.

    In this interview we start by going over the three main techniques for managing established woody species which are pruning, thinning, and coppicing as well as the incredible amount of things you can accomplish if you understand how to use them effectively. From there we look into harvesting from all the different major types of yields and balancing the need to incorporate efficiency into your system while maintaining a healthy ecosystem that wants more diversity and organic patterning.

    We also talk about how to mitigate the initial cost of establishing tree and perennial plants by using upcycled and salvaged materials to start sprouting trees quickly and cheaply right away. By the end Darren also touches on the importance of intervention in our landscapes to more effectively manage wildfires and fire prone areas.

    Before we get started I’ll just point out that the interview starts really abruptly because I lost the beginning of the audio with the introductions and pleasantries. Try as I might after 3 season of producing this show I’m still a complete amatuer with audio software so forgive me for another awkward start to this session. The good news is that it all goes smoothly after the start. If any of you want hear more about Darren’s background and journey to become the world renowned regenerative farm designer and educator that he is, I highly recommend the first interview we did for this show back in season two. I’ve put a link to that show as well as all his other resources in the show notes for this episode at abundantedge.com

    • 49 min
    Even the driest deserts can be regenerated. Here’s how! With Neal Spackman of the Al Baydha project: 141

    Even the driest deserts can be regenerated. Here’s how! With Neal Spackman of the Al Baydha project: 141

    I had the pleasure of catching up again with Neal Spackman, one of the primary designers and organizers of the Al Baydha project in Saudi Arabia.

    The Al Baydha project began in 2009 with a long list of lofty ambitions. Among them they aimed to improve the local economy, act as a model for sustainable development in the Arabian Peninsula, reduce dependence on government handouts for the community, and store and harvest rainwater in the landscape through the restoration of the savannah ecosystem which had been desertified in only a few decades. This is the second interview I’ve done with Neal on his work in Saudi Arabia and this time around we got to go in even greater depth on the details and context of the project that informed the design and decision making process. If you’re interested in dryland and desert regeneration, I highly recommend taking the time to listen to the first episode, even though this one stands well on its own.

    This time around, we revisit the history of the region and how government policies had major impacts on the lives of the nomadic bedouin people and in turn their relationship with the ecology of Al Baydha. Neal walks me through the planning and design process that preceded the work and how the cultural context of the project played a big role in setting the goals for a more sustainable economy for the area. We also dig into the biggest takeaways from 10 years of the largest desert regeneration attempt yet made in Saudi Arabia.

    From there Neal even gets into his new projects and how his return to academia has informed a new approach to degraded land restoration as well as how farming can be leveraged as an ecological asset. Neal makes a lot of great recommendations toward the end for resources including books and videos that helped to inspire and inform these ambitious projects, so be sure to check out the resources section under this episode on the website.

    • 53 min

Customer Reviews

Robynpix ,

Thank you for this Podcast!

You show with Kristen of Sueño de Vida was mega inspiring. Thanks for introducing their project to me!

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Excellent

An appropriately eclectic show with good pace, style, and quantity of interesting and useful information. This show really matters.

Amesmike ,

How’s your white guilt

My god everyday of my life I hear how I should feel guilty for being white, heterosexual, Christian, working 2 jobs, going to church, driving a 2004 dodge truck, and still spending time with my family. As if I stole this life or owe someone for my hard work.
I listen to podcasts like this because I am constantly striving towards independence and self sustainable and beyond organic food.
Don’t fall into the propaganda of being guilty because of who and what you are. You doing great stuff.

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