Sep 20, 2021

Incredibly Diverse 17-Year-Old Syntropic Food Forest – The Food Forest Farmers.

Syntropic farming is a new and ancient regenerative agriculture practice that can be implemented in any region, in any climate, in limitless ways – even in your own backyard.

For over a decade, the Lotz-Keegan family have implemented permaculture practices to regenerate a degraded hillside into an abundant food forest of native and exotic trees that feed their family, community, wildlife, soil, and souls.

Combining the practices of syntropic agroforestry with the principles of permaculture and their own deeply thoughtful approach to land regeneration, food growing, and lifestyle, this family is partnering with nature to create a humming diversity on the land and a positive story about the role of humans in an ecosystem.

Accelerating Nature’s Course: The Power of Syntropic Agroforestry

Introduction: You could leave a hillside to turn into a food forest or a forest naturally, but that would take a hundred or so years to do naturally. With syntropic agroforestry, we can accelerate that process in a natural way, leveraging our knowledge and skills to transform and work with nature to achieve its fullest potential much faster.

Meet PermaDynamics: PermaDynamics is a family business born out of the merging of permaculture and succession dynamics, foundational principles of syntropic agroforestry. The team, comprising Klaus, Nessy, Josh, Mathy, and myself, is dedicated to harnessing the power of nature to create thriving ecosystems.

The Origins of Syntropic Agroforestry: Syntropic farming, pioneered by Ernst Götsch in Brazil in the early 1980s, offers a highly effective method to revitalise depleted soils while simultaneously increasing food production, wildlife habitat, and soil fertility.

Principles of Syntropic Agroforestry: Syntropic agroforestry emphasizes observing and working in harmony with nature’s fundamental principles. Syntropy optimises life processes by fostering high density and functional diversity within plant communities, increasing overall production and resilience.

Implementation and Management: Implementing syntropic agroforestry involves careful selection of support and crop species and understanding the succession of soil development and plant life cycles. Labor-intensive in the initial phases, the system gradually becomes self-sustaining, requiring minimal management beyond harvesting and occasional pruning.

Scaling and Diversity: While syntropy can be mechanized and scaled up, there’s value in maintaining diversity and avoiding streamlining processes. Small-scale farmers adopting syntropic practices contribute to biodiversity preservation and sustainable food production.

Adaptability Across Climates: Syntropic agroforestry is adaptable to various climates and regions, and its principles apply worldwide. Each implementation is unique and tailored to local conditions and community involvement.

Case Study: Te Kōhanga – A Māori Perspective: Te Kōhanga, a three-month-old syntropic food forest on Māori land, exemplifies the integration of syntropic principles with Māori values and philosophy. The project fosters community involvement and honours the land’s cultural significance.

Conclusion: Syntropic agroforestry offers a promising path towards regenerative agriculture, empowering individuals and communities to become active stewards of the land. We can create thriving ecosystems that sustain human and environmental well-being by aligning with nature’s inherent wisdom. It’s not just about growing food; it’s about cultivating a positive relationship with our planet.


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