Cabiokid Features:

For further inquiries, tours or reservations at Cabiokid, you can contact us

Address:
Guapito st., Brgy Sta. Rita, Cabiao, Nueva Ecija

cabiokid@yahoo.com
farm based: 0928 551 3935
other: 0920 9114290
Landline: (044) 940 3481


Principles of nature

Relative location

All elements in a system have a place. A careful placement creates connections between elements, which will increase the benefits we derive from them. The backyard pigs will produce manure. A composting area is therefore best placed nearby as well as the vegetable gardens, which will need the compost as fertilizer. Also the house needs to be near the vegetable garden for its occupants to have easy access to food.

Each element performs multiple functions

For instance a rice farm is not just a farm. It also provides shelter for other living organisms and will serve as nutrient provider for mammals and birds. This knowledge will help us design a better and more productive farm, which, in the end, will perform far better than being just a rice producing farm. A well designed farm becomes an integrated production area and, together with the surrounding land, a healthy poly-culture system.

Each function is supported by many elements

Producing compost will not only be supported by animal manure but as well by plant debris, beached seaweeds or grasses, human wastes, kitchen wastes, nitrogen yielding plant weeds…. and so on. Many elements will support the making of healthy organic fertilizers.

Energy efficient planning

We only have so many hands to help us and 24 hours in a day. Maximizing the use of our energy makes more than sense. If elements around us are well planned and worked out we will be less tired or exhausted. Imagine water to be available nearby the area where we need it; there will be no longer a need to fetch it far away, food crops can grow abundantly around the house and other services needed by the community can now be found nearby. If we are actively involved in the planning process (and not just leave it up to those in power) we can start making impressive changes where it counts most. Permaculture divides an area in zones from 0 to 5, in order of decreasing energy levels. Zone 0 being very busy and bursting with energy, while a zone 5 does not require our attention at all and serves as the wilderness area beyond human commerce.

Using biological resources

When making or constructing something, we should make (as much as possible) use of re-generative resources, which, if carefully managed, never run out of supply. There will be little need to buy materials at the hardware store when we construct our houses with bamboo, grasses, leaves or wood. Applying the appropriate technologies to improve durability and strength of these materials makes them very competitive with non-biological resources or high-tech materials.

Energy cycling

Making good use of energies that pass our eco-system will improve the overall quality of life. By trapping the wind, rain and water that runs through or off a mountainside, we retain its potential for the longest possible time on-site. A creek, which has been dammed at several levels, can function as a dam, an irrigation system, a pond and so on. In this example, the gravity of water will be used efficiently without further needing any extra energy (pumps).

Small-scale intensive systems

A 1000sqm productive garden is easier to manage than a four hectare ‘slash and burn’ system. The energy devoted to a small-scale and intensive system will result in more productivity and, if well planned, can match the produce harvested on a multi ha farm. In tropical eco-systems, energy is stored in plant organisms and not in the soil, so many and densely planted crops make more sense in an ecosystem where the temperature allows a year-round growth.

Natural plant succession and stacking

If we observe the cycles of life and death in nature we can design a system that produces throughout the year. This is a basic principle of food security. Tomatoes in the dry period, gourds in the rainy season, rice in the wet season while before harvesting beans or watermelon are planted as succession crop. We can also mimic the multistory levels of a rainforest in our vegetable garden. For instance, there can be corn intercropped with beans and tomatoes or eggplants while in its shade gingers or other shade loving plants grow. As such, we will drastically increase the productivity of a relative small area.

Poly-culture and diversity of species

Relying on more than just a few crops will protect against times when disease or disaster strikes. Poly-culture balances the ecosystem, will provide more space for predators and keeps the overall production system healthy. More species will also provide us with many and varied foods, allow healthier human beings to develop and give them the right set of nutrients.

Increasing edge within a system

Nature has the richest nutrient exchanges near the edges of eco-systems or where different elements, areas or bodies meet each other. Copying this exchange system results in an overall improved productivity. A water body shaped in the form of a multifaceted star gives more edge to plants, allows more crops and provides more space for fish to hide and more space for water border plants to flourish.

Observe and replicate natural patterns

Patterns are nature’s way to communicate with us. Observing them is like discovering the do’s and don’t’s for making use of natural resources. By seeing certain plants growing densely, others creeping on the ground and yet others reaching out to the light, we gain a wealth of information. For instance, a spiral patterns is often related to growth in nature. We observe this phenomenon in many shells. A spiral can be used to put up an integrated garden allowing successive plants to take root as the garden sprirals out.

Pay attention to scale

Start with small intensive systems before experimenting on larger areas. Allow ample space for uncultivated areas and get to know other species that occupy your ecosystem. The least effort for the greatest change is the motto.

Attitude

The problem is the solution. Waste can easily be viewed in a pessimistic way as either a problem or disadvantage, but it can also become an unique blessing. Setting up a system where waste becomes profitable for humans would be easier and cheaper to achieve and more sustainable in the long run. It is a matter to see the advantage of at first sight disadvantageous elements. If anything causes an obstacle to sustainable development it will be us!