Learning with PermaCare

How to make sure our families always have healthy food!

How to make sure our families always have healthy food!

We all know the heirachy of human needs.

🌱 Fresh air, clean water, adequate sleep, a roof over our heads... and healthy, whole food! 

One of the primary focuses as we create the PermaCare Village - our own thriving, healthy, prosperous society - is to redefine our relationship with food. 

We are quite literally creating our own local, fully integrated food network in our communities backwards. 

Imagine knowing that your food was coming directly from within your own community. 

That it was all organically grown by own our people and affordable.

Scotty Mortimer
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Get Growing!

Get Growing!

We get it, gardening is not for everyone. While we firmly  believe every human being on this planet should be equipped with this essential and sacred skill, we understand our current lifestyle doesn’t allow for every person to be out in the sun making sure the caterpillars are keeping away from their parsley.

However, this year has truly got all of us thinking a lot more about our food supply. As we started to notice just how fast things can get chaotic – what, no rice, no pasta, no canned veggies in a matter of weeks? We also started to think of better and more reliable ways to feed ourselves! Thankfully, there is a lot of common sense still left in stock and people are making good use of it to come up with solutions!

It’s a simple question: What if we didn’t rely on supermarkets and started growing our own food instead? BOOM! Now, that’s smart! But wait, what grows when and how long does it take until we are able to harvest anything?

Don’t worry. Nobody knows everything about everything. Isn’t that why building a strong network around us is the best answer? We need each other! The efforts of a strong group combined do all the magic for a thriving and happy community to create their own food economy! 

We are working tirelessly here at PermaCare to make sure we have enough knowledgeable people coming together to serve and empower our tribe with the best tools and resources so we can grow (food and as human beings) together!

While our vision and team expands to make this possible, we thought we would put a list together of the easiest veggies to grow at home  for those who are keen to have a go!

Need a quick salad for lunch?

Lettuce grows super quick and is easy to harvest: Just pick leaves as needed or snip the tops off the plant. They don’t need a lot of space either. You could literally grow them in containers and partially shaded areas. Give it 5 – 8 and you will have full lettuces to enjoy!

Tomatoes, fresh or cooked?

One of the most popular and versatile vegetables, you can grow tomatoes in hanging baskets or pots or anywhere they will get lots of sun and have support for their stalks. Starter plants from the garden centre are the easiest to grow. You will be picking ripe tomatoes anywhere from 40 – 60 days after planting.

Cucumber is a fruit!

Cucumbers warmer temperatures and sunlight. They do need a bit of support too, for climbing.  As long as you water them regularly, they grow almost like weeds. You will most likely have enough cucumbers for you and your neighbours. A cucumber plant takes roughly the same time as a tomato plant to produce any fruit.

Carrots have loads of vitamin A

Carrots should be ready to harvest 70 – 80 days after planting! The only thing about carrots is they might not grow very large if the soil isn’t deep enough or is too rocky.  Deep, well-drained soil is what they prefer. Simple and fun to grow, they prefer full sun exposure but will tolerate a small amount of shade. 

Radishes are rad!

Even though not everyone is a fan, once you see how easy they are to grow, you will want to add them to your veggie garden. They take just 20 days to reach full size and grow in the sun or partially shaded areas. And as long as you manage to water them before the soil dries out, you’ll be rewarded with plenty of crispy, spicy radishes to enjoy and share.

Green Beans

Remember those projects from school, growing beans inside a cup?! Most varieties grow easily from seeds and are ready to pick in just over a month! Most beans prefer full sun and well-drained soil.

Did you like zucchini as a child?

Whether pots or directly in soil. Like beans and radishes, they grow easily from seeds. They need good moisture and prefer warm soil!

And finally, herbs!!! If you like cooking you probably have spent some serious coin at your local supermarket. Not only will you save yourself some money, but growing herbs is fun and they are much better when freshly picked! Some ideas: Basil, Dill, Parsley, Rosemary. You can even use one large pot for a combination of herbs. 

To wrap it up we would like to say that PermaCare is here to serve our community. Do you need help building or starting your own garden at home? Our team can help!!

Whether you are looking for a simple home garden or full food security for you and your family, please get in touch to find out how we can help. Send us an email or text.

Much love,

PermaCare family.

Larissa Santos
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Keep it Fresh

Keep it Fresh

Here at PermaCare we believe organic fruit and veggies are simply the best! We not only avoid ingesting toxins present in crop sprays but we also get that superior flavour and nutritional value that only food that has been recently harvested can offer. 

But one thing is true: Because organic produce is free from preservatives, some items tend to ripen much faster – if you don’t know how to store them well, they will soften and brown quicker than you were expecting. 

Have you ever bought a box of organic strawberries and found them all mouldy and soft after a few days? Or maybe a bunch of coriander that was looking super green and vibrant in your shopping bag but was all floppy and sad when you decided to use it?

Well, the great news is that fruit and vegetables, just like any living thing, need a healthy and adequate environment to thrive. If you keep them in a place they like and they will last much longer! 

So, we’ve put together some tips to help you keep your organic fruit and vegetables fresh for days! 

First, let’s start with a simple list of what to keep at room temperature and what to put in the fridge.

Room temperature:

Bananas

Basil

Eggplant

Garlic

Grapefruit

Green beans

Lemons

Limes

Onions

Oranges

Potatoes

In the fridge:

Apples

Beetroots

Berries

Broccoli

Cabbage

Carrots

Cauliflower

Coriander

Cucumber

Dark leafy greens

Leeks

Lettuce

Parsley

Zucchini

Knowing what temperature they prefer is only half the puzzle though! Some fruit and vegetables should be stored separately no matter where they go, plus some of them require extra special care:

Bananas


Ethylene gas in fruits and vegetables is actually a plant hormone which regulates the plant’s growth and development. Not all fruits and vegetables can tolerate the exposure to this gas so it’s important to keep them apart.To prevent fruit from becoming overripe too soon, keep ethylene producing and ethylene sensitive fruits away from each other. 

Ethylene producing fruit includes bananas, tomatoes, all stone fruit, rock melon, mangoes and paw paw.

Ethylene sensitive fruit and vegetables: apples, carrots, beans, lettuce, potatoes, watermelon, eggplant, broccoli and cucumbers.

So try to keep these guys away from each other so the sensitive ones last… or let them have a sleepover if you want them to ripen more quickly. 

Potatoes – Place potatoes in a paper bag and store them in a cool, dark place. Our organic potatoes will last for months!! 

Herbs and lettuce (except basil!)


Basil 
Basil leaves will actually sag faster in the fridge. Instead, trim the bottom of the herbs and place in a jar or glass filled with a few inches of water – just like flowers  Change the water daily. To keep herbs crisp and fresh, lay them out on a damp paper towel or fresh cloth wipe. Gently roll up the herbs within the wet paper, place in a biodegradable plastic zip lock bag and store in the fridge (not too close to the back wall though, it’s too cold there!).

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are most flavoursome when kept at room temperature, so don’t refrigerate them. Depending on ripeness, tomatoes can stay on the counter for up to two weeks. Trick: To speed up ripeness, place the tomatoes in a paper bag with an apple.

Apples


Onions  – 
Keep onions to themselves. Onions love to share their fragrance with their neighbours so they should be stored separately and especially away from potatoes, which will wilt and sprout more quickly.Even though apples may seem ok at room temperature, the fridge is the best place to keep your apples after you buy them. This keeps them juicy, crisp and much fresher for longer.

Beetroot and Capsicum


We hope these tips help you enjoy your fruit and vegetable box for much longer! If you have any tips you have been using at home, feel free to share it with us in the comments below!Place them in a mesh produce bag and store them in the drawer of your fridge. They do not like too much moisture but still want to be able to breathe.

Much love from the PermaCare family!

Happy eating  

Larissa Santos
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Food Brings People Together!

Food Brings People Together!

Food bonds people. It always has. Food is our most primal relationship with Mother Nature and one another. It is so much more than just survival. With food we connect with family, we share good times with friends, court and spoil lovers, and ultimately, if we are truly connected with it, we count our blessings. 

“To break bread together,” a saying as old as the Bible, captures the power a meal can have on the way we feel about life. Many studies indicate that families who eat together on a regular basis throughout the day have a higher sense of belonging and self-esteem. They feel connected to one another by the simple act of sharing a meal. 

Children make mud cakes, have tea with their dolls, exchange snacks to make friends, and copy the rituals of adults… Food is life! There is something about our relationship with it that creates really meaningful experiences throughout our existence.

We save our secret recipes for special occasions. We celebrate with sweets on our birthdays, we make lunch for someone who came to visit, we gather around the dinner table to commemorate the completion of our studies and we cook potatoes around the fire when we are camping. We have grown to associate food with love and in many ways we feel comforted by it.

Food is an expression of culture and creativity too. How amazing to have so many beautiful flavours and food traditions around the world. It gives people a sense of identity and curiosity. One of the first things we report to friends when we travel to a different country is the experience we have had with the food – how it tasted, the way it was served, if it was at a restaurant or on the streets, the spices that were used… Food is like art! It creates memories, it inspires us, moves us and thrills our senses.

Unfortunately though, many of us feel disconnected from our food and our community. We live in a society that has become distant from nature. We became accustomed to buying food in supermarkets, so often imported, wrapped in plastic, full of additives and with minimum nutritional value. We have lost sacred skills to care for the land and to grow abundantly.

Something that could be so simple has become a little messy…

It has to change! And we believe it already is. Luckily for us we have enough people who are committed to changing the current scenario and are taking action towards living in a more harmonious and sustainable life. That is where PermaCare is making a difference – with your help, we are creating a community where people are connected through food on a deeper level. A connection that makes a community thrive and a sustainable food economy to keep moving in a healthy way.

Imagine being part of an integrated network of local families whose backyards are full of fruit and veggies planted and maintained by a team of passionate growers. Now imagine this same home-grown produce distributed within our own member network providing low cost, organic produce to our families and providing an income for our land holders.

The strength and abundance we will manifest together is unlimited! Imagine the sort of gathering and events we can co-create with the people in our network where we can combine skills, learn, have adventures in nature, listen to music, share art, come up with solutions for our children’s education and so much more. The power of collaboration!!! When enough people come together with the same vision – the vision of living in harmony with nature and each other – everything is possible. 

You are being presented with the opportunity to be part of a movement that is changing the way our food supply is done, bringing it back into our hands rather than depending on huge corporations who certainly don’t have our best interests at heart. It is possible and it is happening. Are you ready to live your best life? Are you ready to take care of your family, your body and this beautiful planet bringing to life a strong community who is bonded by food, by nature, by love? We know you are!

For a life filled with love and organic food!

 

PermaCare.

Larissa Santos
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The Fresher the Better

The Fresher the Better

Do you know how long conventional fruit and vegetables travel before it lands in your shopping trolley? The reason it matters so much to us is because locally grown, freshly picked fruit and vegetables are a lot more nutritious and flavoursome. And here is why: after being harvested, ordinary produce is exposed to a ray of different temperatures, transported and handled multiple times before they are finally placed on the shelves for us to buy. Apart from that, fruit and vegetables continue to “breathe” and will naturally start degrading with extended contact with air and light – the longer it takes to be eaten, the less flavour and nutritional value it will have.

For you to have an idea, the apples you see available at major supermarkets throughout January, were very likely picked in March the previous year!

Taking apples as an example, here is what happens to them after they are picked:

Firstly, they are usually placed in giant containers submerged in water so they float out. At this pre-sorting stage, “bad” ones are spotted and removed. Detergent and chlorine are applied and then rinsed off with hot water. Brushes remove stubborn bird droppings and the fruit is air dried. More often than not, wax is then applied to improve gloss and seal in moisture and hot-aired once more. They pass along a conveyor belt and are photographed  and analysed by a computer for consistency of colour, shape and size.

The fruit is then graded, weighed and arranged accordingly – some are worthy of being sold (class 1), others go into bags and labelled as “processing” apples – for juicing, pies and other products.

Loaded on pallets, the apples go into cold storage. In longer-term controlled atmosphere storage, the oxygen level is additionally lowered from 2% to nearly 1%, putting the fruit to “sleep” for 6-12 months.

The apples are then taken by a truck to a central warehouse, then distributed to the supermarkets. And because supermarkets buy them by the tons, they are again refrigerated and only put out on the shelves a few kilos at a time.

Crazy, huh? Technology makes it possible for us to experience all the conveniences we are used to but how about our health and connection to our food?

People got so accustomed to buying out of season. In fact, the great majority of us don’t even know what exactly grows when. This disconnection with the natural cycles of nature started when giant supermarket chains (in their process of dominating the market and pushing smaller traders out of business) started offering a huge variety of fruit and vegetables throughout the whole year. Consequently, we consumers don’t think twice about the fact we can buy “fresh” asparagus in winter for a particular recipe we’re trying out, not realising they have travelled all the way from South American countries. Now imagine the process they go through to guarantee that asparagus is edible by the time it reaches Australian ground?

Buying in season is the way to go! The only way to go in our opinion! By getting a box of fresh organic produce delivered to your door every week you are in for some added variety to your diet throughout the year. Rather than an endless rotation of potatoes, carrots and lettuce on your dinner plate, eating seasonally will see you getting creative with celery and kale and enjoying the benefits of beetroot and eggplant where you might not have otherwise.

Here at PermaCare we are super passionate about the freshness of the fruit and vegetables we put inside our boxes. We really want to see our community growing strong and getting all that nutritional value in their bodies. If you are only getting started in your journey of buying more consciously and in harmony with nature, it might take a little time to get used to it.  Keep it up though. Once you start seeing the benefits in your health and lifestyle we guarantee there is no going back.

To a healthy life!

 

PermaCare.

Larissa Santos
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The Future of Food

The Future of Food

I’m sure you’ll all agree: We are living in some very interesting times! This pandemic scenario has shifted the majority of people out of the rat race they were running into a completely new set of thoughts, feelings and priorities.                                                  It’s obvious that with the run on the supermarkets and all the seeds and seedlings being sold out from major retailers and even online stores…  that people started acting predominantly from their root (base) chakra – the most instinctual of all chakras, our primal energy of survival.  

Whether you are part of the toilet-paper-rice-and-pasta squad or the virus-not-even-real but better make sure we get some extra just in case crew, it surely crossed your mind one way or another: What if food starts running out for real?  The positive side of it is that it certainly made people remember that food does not grow on shelves and that Coles and Woolies aren’t exactly local suppliers here to care for the community. 

The thing is: We, the human race, have a beautiful opportunity in our hands. 

We are living through a turning point in many ways. There is so much evidence pointing us towards a massive shift. You can call it the Age of Aquarius, The Golden Age, The Awakening of Humanity or even a Recession or Great Depression  – whatever angle you are looking from the conclusion is the same: there is change in the air and it is big.

But let’s go back to our main point here! Human beings have been very disconnected from their food. Not only people stopped selecting what goes into their bodies wisely but our food supply became a giant industry focused much more on profit margins than on health and sustainability. It is time we re-establish our relationship with our planet and with what it has to offer us. 

Imagine a world where pretty much everyone grew food in their backyard. A system where all families had access to the sacred knowledge of planting, the seasons, the moon, harvesting, storing…

 A community of people growing seasonal fruit and vegetables and caring for the land in a sustainable way! It may seem like too big of a dream for some but it is actually more possible and accessible than we imagine. It is already happening right now in many parts of the world. The secret is just to start! 

Working with what is available and using our skills to grow. Holding the vision strong and bringing more people together to co-create and re-create the way we do food.

PermaCare was born from dreams of a better world. A more harmonious one with stronger and happier people. We are working with all our hearts to start planting our little seeds towards this movement. Firstly, by making organic food more widely available, secondly by educating people, teaching them how to grow and maintain, plus serving our community with the tools and services to get them inspired about food again. And thirdly by building solid foundations so we can, together, remember  2020 not as the year of face masks and hand sanitiser but the year of co-creative solutions towards freedom and prosperity. 

Welcome to the future. Welcome to PermaCare.

Larissa Santos
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