Tag Archives: Masanobu Fukuoka

Episode 316. Fukuoka Musings

This is The ChangeUnderground for the 28th of November 2022.

I’m your host, Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!


The search for a Fukuoka friendly rotation suitable for a cool temperate climate with a bit of climate change variation thrown in continues. On top of this search is the refinement for minimal processing of any seeds. Spelt grew well, as do oats but both require hull removal. On a small scale that can be problematic. Apart from the need for some sort of mechanical process, energy is also required. Continue reading →

Episode 283. Organic, Biodynamic or Permaculture?

This is The ChangeUnderground for the 20th of December 2021.

I’m your host, Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

Bit of a back to first principles episode this week. I think we can take as read that if you’re listening to this podcast the chemical route to food production is a no go. This can leave a bewildering mass of other choices.

From the generic “Organic” to the semi propriety biodynamic and permaculture. We can, of course, toss in regenerative agriculture too.

So, as I say, let’s go back to first principles.

What are we attempting to do? Why are we doing it? Then finally, how?  Continue reading →

Episode 271. The Wheel of the Year

This is The ChangeUnderground for the 27th of September 2021.

I’m your host, Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

The Equinox

A moment to pause, just for a minute, as the wheel of the year continues to turn. Last monday my weather app reported the sunrise would be at 06:10 and the sunset 18:10. Twelve hours of daylight following twelve hours of night time. The equinox was upon us. Harvests in the northern hemisphere and thoughts of planting in the southern. Those to the north of us in Australia have been planting for some time. Unless they live in the ranges or here in Van Diemen’s Land. The soil is yet to fully warm for that sort of thing but it is definitely on the mind. Continue reading →

Episode 261. Seymour, Fukuoka, Mollison and MacKenzie

This is The ChangeUnderground for the 21st of June 2021.

I’m your host, Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

This week I’m taking a look back at my literary mentors in the smallholding/horticulture field. 

John Seymour

It turned out I finally managed to get to the library to ask about self sufficiency books the day after “The Good Life” first aired on Australian TV back in 1977. I hadn’t heard of it, let alone watched it but the librarian alerted me to it. A romanticised version of backyard self sufficiency but with some useful ideas. Continue reading →

Episode 237. Nature Always Bats Last

This is The ChangeUnderground for the week ending 9th of November 2020.

I’m your host, Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

We must realise, I think, how little we know. Compared with 3.8 billion years of evolution, no-till/no-dig farming is, at a scientific, measured and data collected level, about sixty years old. A major part of no-dig is the use of cover crops and they have been known about in ag for much longer. The combination of ground covers and no-dig though is a newish thing. Continue reading →

Episode 236. The Chaos Garden Experiment

This is The ChangeUnderground for the week ending 2nd of November 2020.

I’m Jon Moore

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

As we do we can learn. Over the past fortnight I’ve been preparing the fields for planting. I’m converting pastures to crops. I’m not inclined to spend my time growing lettuce and microgreens, despite the obvious profit levels apparently available. I trace my way of doing things back to John Seymour and his Complete Book of Self Sufficiency. He talks about growing grain crops. Barley, wheat, maize, peas and beans. To that end I’ve set up a five year rotation with all of the above leading to soil bursting with life for our garlic crop. Continue reading →

Episode 234. The Complexity Is The Joy

This is the World Organic News for the week ending 4th of  October 2020.

Jon Moore reporting!

Decarbonise the Air, Recarbonise the Soil!

The more we dig into this no-dig thing the more it becomes opaque and at the same time, it becomes crystal clear. It’s a thing I call the Fukuoka paradox. Masanobu Fukuoka of the One Straw Revolution talks about this in one of the later chapters. He’d set up his system, sowing before reaping, allowing fruit trees to grow as central leaders and then not pruning them and loading his orchard soil with food crop seeds to allow them to work out their own rotations when he was approached by ag scientists. Now I’m not going to quote the book but the gist of it is something like this: Continue reading →

Episode 219. Unintended Consequences of the Wrong Target

This is the World Organic News for the week ending 22nd of  June 2020.

Jon Moore reporting!

Decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil!

The trouble with “knowing” is it leads to certainty, certainty leads to errors and these errors usually come from the unintended consequences of “knowing”. It may well be part of the human condition, it is certainly part of the current industrial agricultural paradigm.

From Dr Christine Jones’s last episode came the following:


No amount of NPK fertiliser can compensate for compacted, lifeless soil with low wettability and low water-holding capacity. Indeed, adding more chemical fertiliser often makes things worse. This is particularly so for inorganic nitrogen (N) and inorganic phosphorus (P). An often overlooked consequence of the application of high rates of N and P is that plants no longer need to channel liquid carbon to soil microbial communities in order to obtain these essential elements. Reduced carbon flow has a negative impact on soil aggregation – as well as limiting the energy available to the microbes involved in the acquisition of important minerals and trace elements. Lack of trace elements increases the susceptibility of plants and animals to pests and diseases.  

End Quote Continue reading →

Episode 215. Back to the Future

This is the World Organic News for the week ending 25th of  May 2020.

Jon Moore reporting!

Decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil!

This the transcript from a Real Food Chain episode. 

I was planting garlic this week and not able to complete the usual episode.

Please enjoy.

Part One

R: Hello and welcome to Episode 4, Season 5 of The Real Food Chain. I’m your host Rich Bowden, coming to you from the Central West of NSW and I’m joined as always by my friend, author and podcaster at World Organic News Jon Moore.

J: Hello one and all.

R: Jon I gather that your worldly wanderings for your Good Lady Annie and yourself are close to a end, with a permanent move to a northwestern Tasmanian farm now imminent, depending on a successful settlement. 

J: By the time this episode hits the feed we’ll be on the road to Highclere and some sort of permanence. 

R: The very best of luck to you and Annie for this next stage of life, I wonder though if you would mind sharing with us, how you see plans for the farm fit in with the regenerative farming practices you’ve been writing, podcasting and practising now for many years.

J: Ok, this will be a series of experimental plantings as well as food and so on for ourselves. I’ve planted Fukuoka grain gardens before but this time I’ll be documenting and photographing and so on. Demonstration gardens like the 3 sisters and so on. 

R: Can you just go into Fukuoka grain gardens concept a bit for us please Jon? And how you expect this to work in a Tassie climate zone?


  1. Sow before you reap the previous cereal crop.
  2. Return the straw and chaff to the field.
  3. Rinse and Repeat

R: Thanks Jon. You’ll be joining a swathe of farmers big and small who are moving to Tassie, to take advantage of the cooler climate and relative availability of water in the state compared to drought-stricken parts of the mainland. I grew up in the south of the island, and my recollections of rare travels to the north are quite hazy, but I recall it as being very picturesque, very green, clean and closer to the mainland than we were in the south! As I say all the very best on behalf of Carol and myself and all Real Food Chain listeners and we look forward to the blog, podcast and (perhaps) a mini series?

J: Who’s to know at this stage?

R: OK, after the quick break, we’ll be back to talk about Jon’s fascinating latest podcast episode about Evolution and Gardening and Farming and also a sneak preview of our sister episode Permaculture Plus, which will hit your podcatchers on the 15th of December.

Part Two

R: Speaking of World Organic News Jon, I listened to a fascinating — and informative — episode of yours titled “Evolution, Gardening, Farming and Decisions”. It certainly filled in a number of gaps in my knowledge. Can you briefly discuss the topic please Jon, especially the relationship between evolution and the food we eat today?

J:  “And you’ve got a special episode coming up for Permaculture Plus Rich?”

R: Thanks Jon, and thanks for the insight into evolution and food. We’ll have the link to that in the show notes. [Talk about interview with Lis Bastian, community organiser, permaculturalist, climate activist and much, much more bullet points below.

  • Co-production with Mark Spencer’s Climactic.
  • Lis very generous with her time.
  • Amongst her many community activities in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, Lis is running a fascinating grass roots media venture called Big Fix. And she bases this on permaculture principles.
  • Within each problem is the solution. 
  • Top down, Murdoch-esque media identified as the problem. Solution is non-profit, community driven, positive media.
  • Hard copy, social media, website and video.
  • Fascinating focus on storytellers driving the local media venture.
  • Here’s Lis talking about how the traditional, mainstream media methods moves people away as the focus.

J: And the full episode will hit the feed on the 15th of December.

R: One of the great parts of the interview was that Lis mentioned that she believed the whole Big Fix project was entirely replicable to any community. I’d love to see a version in the Central West of NSW. What about you in the northwestern farming community of Tassie Jon?

J: We’ll see what’s already up and running in the district. I’m not one to charge in and start telling the locals this is what you need now. Especially if I add the phrase, this is how we do it on the mainland but yes there is a possibility for a big fix style set up, in time.

R: And yes, I’ll be supplying you with a few seasoned Tassie descriptions of mainlanders as a moving in present! And on that note, that’s it for episode 4 of Season 5 of The Real Food Chain. Goodbye from me Rich Bowden.

J: And goodbye from him Jon Moore.

Episode 212. Resources and Heresy!

This is the World Organic News for the week ending 4th of  May 2020.

Jon Moore reporting!

Decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil!

Back in 2007/8 when the financial crash hit government funding in the US, yes and everywhere else too, but this is a US story for the moment, so the US cut funding to NCAT and especially to their ATTRA program which I think stands for Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural America? Of something like that. I’d used this site for years as a resource for sustainable ag articles, ideas and techniques. Anyway their funding was chopped about and they started charging a couple of dollars for each download. The other day at work I thought I remembered a resource on organic asparagus. A quick google wang had me there. Continue reading →