an acre apiece

Chris Marsh chris_e_marsh at
Mon Nov 6 12:19:58 GMT 2006

Hi friends, This is my first post to this group, so apols if I'm 
repeating old stuff. First I'd like to ask how the group/network 
of 'diggers' relates to that of 'permies' or permaculturists? I ask 
this because of being told yesterday by a young and very keen permie 
that we can forget about feeding the people of Britain from the land 
of Britain; it's not possible. I asked why not, given that there's 
roughly an acre apiece (not that we'd cultivate as individuals, of 
course)? His answer was to do with cities. I said that my vision was 
of a return to pre-enclosures, open field strips etc. and lots of 
small hamlets. We'd need to regenerate degraded soil and improve 
marginal land and raise yields (something the founders of permaculture 
assumed it would be about) - so the plots are as productive as well-
husbanded allotments. But even if one expects people in future to stay 
in the - transformed and greened - cities, and works in reformist mode 
in that direction, surely it's unnecessarily defeatist, and 
perpetuating alienation from the land, to assume we can't ever hope to 
feed everybody in the land from the land? Looking forward to answers 
and comments. love, Chris

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