Regen Ray: Good day soil lovers Regen Ray here. Welcome to another edition of the secrets of the Soil. I’m pretty excited because we’re about to get our hands dirty and dig deep with Nick joining us all the way from Germany. Hello, Nick, how are you doing?
Nick: I’m doing great. Thanks for having me.
Regen Ray: Excellent. Well, I’m excited to start talking about all things soil and permaculture share with our soil lovers. A little bit about who you are and how you got your hands dirty in the dirt.
Nick: Yeah, I’m Nick , as you just said, from from having lived in Germany and Iceland, pretty much all my youth out in the fields, just exploring nature, always being outside. So I got into that quite early. And then, yeah, I always strive to do something that matters in some respects. And I think just around the time of finishing high school, I realized that there’s a lot of things not quite as they should be, especially when we look at environment and climate and these things. So I got into it and I was certainly doing things alone is OK. But if you really want to have an impact, you need more people, you need to get together. And also, at that time, I realize how many super powerful corporations there are and what they’re doing. So I thought, Hey, it kind of makes sense to have something that they have , but with a goal that is a positive one and not just a goal of just contributing to problems. And so I went to university I studied business. I realized at that point that getting into big organizations to change things takes a lot of time and is really difficult. But when you just start a new organization, you can just started from the ground up as a positive, positive entity. So I studied entrepreneurship and innovation for my masters, and while I was sitting on the toilet at a friend’s place, I saw a book called Permaculture. Sepp Holzer . So he’s this really famous Austrian permaculturist. Not sure if he’s also that famous in Australia. But yeah, I looked into it. I was like, Hey, this is fantastic. There are so many solutions in here. This sort of permaculture thing makes so much sense. Why isn’t everyone doing this? And so as a university, I could have gone into any kind of job or started something in the in. The corporate started well, but I thought, Hey, I need to get my hands dirty. I need to. So I moved to Tenerife on the Canary Islands. Mostly my initial thought of going there was, Hey, it’s warm. I just studied for a long time in Amsterdam, where it’s really cold and rainy, when I have a good life and I go surfing. But then it’s like, Hey, I’m here, it’s so dry. This whole permaculture thing makes so much sense. here, I need to. I need to learn. I need to get my hands dirty. So I worked on different farms. They’re really into it. Basically, my whole life then evolved around time and culture, so I read all the books they could watch. All the videos just went into everything permaculture and then got practical, practical experience on the farm. And because there were a lot of volunteers I was managing, at some point they wanted to learn. So I got into this part, and so I started giving workshops, started planting a lot of got into food forests and went to another farm where there was a lot of space to plant stuff and that got into agroforestry, gave more workshops. And yeah, that’s kind of where the journey started from there continued. But we can talk about that later.
Regen Ray: Awesome. It sounds fantastic. And it’s all topics that I’ve been digging deep into, and I love the fact that there’s also the overlap of that business and entrepreneur side of things as well, because I always see a lot of overlaps with the way that people running businesses and even your view of like, you know, working with others can be quite difficult and trying to create change. So you just build it from the ground up. And I think, you know, sometimes that’s a really good kind of mindset to sit in and so forth. And also, you know, like you can actually remember the time that you saw a book that changed, you know, a bit of a pivot in your life. And it’s only those times where we slow down and do nothing and relaxing and having me time where these like downloads of like magic moments can happen. So that’s a that’s an awesome pivot point in your life. So I know with permaculture, it’s one of those big kind of topics. And you know, I I think sometimes it can be a little bit overwhelming is like different zones and different techniques. But what are some of the things that you recommend people do to get started? If they’re sitting, they’re curious and they’re going well. I want to explore these permaculture stuff like what’s a quick win or something simple that people can do?
Nick: I think if you don’t have a clue yet they just heard the words they should look into what’s their favourite type of offloading. So it’s into reading a lot of a lot of great books. I think one of the really good starting books is Gaia’s Garden , which is really nice, and it makes it really visual to to see what she’s into. If you’re more into videos, so much trade stuff out there, I think, especially YouTube-wise , Geoff Lawton is doing a fantastic job Really, putting out a lot of content is also a lot of a lot of podcasts that you can listen to. So this depends to figure out how do you like to learn? And then what I would really recommend is start really small and slow so that it’s also one of the principles. But it really makes sense. You know, like once you get into the principles, say OK start with the way you think about things. Start with OK, how do you look at this? How do you look at problems? How do you look at situations that are happening? Do you have, you know, even a tiny balcony or windowsill? And then you can start to really figure it out? I’ll get into it, actually looking at the soil in a different way. So there’s many different pathways, but I would recommend get into it a little bit. And then there’s so many fantastic courses out there. There’s a lot of workshops, but I don’t think there is like a one size fits all solution. So I would be really mindful of what works for you as a as a person and then dig deeper. And then once you’re in that rabbit hole, it’s a gigantic one and it’ll probably never come out of it again.
Regen Ray: That’s the goal. I love those rabbit holes where you just so in there. It’s like, I don’t want to go back out into the other world during COVID. Admittedly, I went internal and I invested a little bit in self-help and doing the milkwood permaculture course. here in run out of Tasmania in Victoria there, Australian mob working with David Holmgre. It was a really good way of like starting the principles. It was a little bit more about permaculture living because I’m one of those people, as you mentioned, having to having a balcony. And so in my mind, I was like, Oh, there’s no point me doing the permaculture design course or getting accredited in that area and getting all the nitty gritty because I don’t have any land. And I think that really got broken down when I started realizing doing the permaculture living course that it is really about mindset in the way that you see the world. And I made a YouTube video about all the permaculture stuff I’m doing here in my apartment balcony, in the butcher, fermenting, collecting weeds and just creating curiosity of learning what’s in our own actual backyard, acknowledging the land, the previous owners. And yeah, I just think it’s really interesting that it is more of a mindset and you can start even if you don’t have access to land. And that was a big aha moment. And I’m someone who’s been in this space for a while, and I still kind of pigeonholed permaculture as like needing land and having to do designs and zones and all these complicated stuff.
Nick: You know, I think it’s it’s really that’s also when I’m teaching it in workshops, I don’t focus so much on on just having the land hard and doing all this. It’s all mindset change. It’s how you how you approach things. Sort of what I really love is one of my favorite principles of the whole what is called staking functions there. So I always think that when you’re doing something, is it doing one thing or could it do more things? And that applies to business and it relates to living that applies to just everything when you like, when you’re doing something and it only has one purpose, something is missing, you know, like, can you can you do it in a way that it has a purpose for something later on? Or can you can you add something until you know, this isn’t like starting slow getting feedback? These things makes so much sense. You know, like sometimes we we have we have a goal where we’re like, Hey, we need to do this now. So you put all your effort into it. You build something gigantic, be construct wise also in a business context. And then you realize after a while, this doesn’t work. So in a business context, you can put a lot of effort as you build a product and then you realize no one wants this, which is a bit of an issue. But if you go slow, you know, and then then you test. And and that’s also what I like with the way the intersection between permaculture and businesses with ideation and with design thinking is the old concepts that are coming more from the business side of things from the design side. But they almost identically represent principles because it just makes sense to sink the things that were quite universal. And so we need to prototype. I need to come up with new things. And then, you know, you can, of course, also do that in the garden, but you don’t have to.
Regen Ray: Yeah, I think I think that’s a great point because as I’ve observed and even myself, we tend to complicate things. You know, we grab something that’s so simple and we overcomplicate it. We want to have the seven step formula that sits on top of the twelve day, you know, boot camp and all these all these stuff. But, you know, looking at permaculture and slowing down and and even just how nature works, you do definitely get less more out of less, you know, doing less, getting more return and stacking. I call it stacking enterprise has been very similar. About that is like, how does one function have multiple purposes? And even like the waste of one thing can be the input to something else. And that’s circular economy where there is no waste and everything is really intentional and thought out. It’s just really magical to hear some of these stories. I just want to shift gears a little bit and kind of go more into a little bit of. Like some aha moments, what are some of the facts and figures and fun facts, I guess that really blew your mind when you started exploring this world of soil and permaculture that you can share with the soil lovers today specifically?
Nick: Thanks. I think it was. It was a moment that was that was really incredible when I started reading teaming with microbes by Jeff Lowenfels , which is a book I would recommend to everyone, to any soil, lover anyone who has anything to do with soil. Read that book because before I knew like. Yeah, well, in the soil there are some earthworms and I don’t know, they’re probably doing good stuff. But then you realize there’s this whole soil food web and what’s what really blew my mind is and it’s a point I already knew okay . how important microbes, important protozoa and other other microbes in the in the ground. And I knew they were kind of important. But when I learned that this whole food was regulated by the plants and their roots and their root exudates, that they need to feed this whole system, and that is, there are no living roots that system doesn’t get fed and disappears and then the nutrients leave as well because they’re in the bodies of these microorganisms. That was, for me, the biggest, the biggest moment when I really realized that while the plants are kind of farming these microbes to give them the nutrients they need and working in symbiosis with with fungi, I think that was that was a really big moment. And then another thing that happened a bit earlier was the fungi. So I had heard quite a bit about the fungi and roots trading and kind of being being connected and sharing nutrients. But when I learned to this proper trade going on and then sometimes plants roots or of fungi refuse either. If it’s from the fungi side, they refuse sugars from the plant and it’s not enough or the plant refuses, refuses. The nutrients on the fungi it doesn’t give out doesn’t give out sugars or other things when when it’s not enough in the trace of the trading to say, Hey, I’ll give you this much this resource, if you give me that much, that completely blew my mind that there’s actual trade going on in proper economics in the soil. I think those two moments were really incredible when I got into the whole soil thing. And then when it came to impact, I think when I looked at agriculture as a whole and the positive impact that agriculture can have on our plant, that was saying, Wow, OK, this is this is an absolute game changer because before I was always about tree planting and all that, and we usually hear this thing OK, either we can use an area to grow food or we can use it to preserve nature, restore ecosystem . So it’s always like hey both are important , and it’s always like, Oh no, we need to cut down the rainforests because we need food. Well, no, we can just set up regenerative systems and then actually grow food in healthy ecosystems and in forest ecosystems. And the more we get into regenerative agriculture, the more we can actually regenerate while growing food. So I really love this like. There’s no or it’s and and that’s those three things probably the ones that stood out most for me. Well, I
Regen Ray: can agree with you more with the whole understanding the soil food web and knowing that there is so much life in our soil. And I shared this with you off camera. We’re off recording, but I’ll share it with all our soil lovers. Like a couple of months ago, we were in an hour and about who we wanted to serve every day. And that cliche question is, who’s your avatar? Who are you waking up to serve and help every day? And we win? Hang on a minute. Soil is a living organism. Our avatar is soil. And that blew my mind because it is a living organism and it has so much life and there is all these trades. I feel like Mother Nature has worked out how to do these trade better than some of the humans above the ground, you know, and it just happened so organically and naturally. And you know, there is so much research coming out now that the trees in the forest are communicating to each other, and they’ve even got like mother-daughter type of relationship and protecting each other and working really, really together. And you look at that system and you think, Wow, and then we run a tiller through it and just rip it up like it doesn’t matter, you know? And yeah, it’s it’s it really blew my mind around that. And the more I learn about the fungi and there’s a great documentary, if anyone’s curious about learning about fungi called fantastic fungi, it’s the best six hours I spent on YouTube to rent it for a couple of days, and it blew my mind about what’s happening. And, you know, even up until today, I’m still learning new and new things, and I’m addicted to learning this because the more I learn, the more inspired I am about creating change. And impact, you mentioned the word regenerative, you and I agree with you as well, like, why can’t we have both? Why can’t we grow great food in a forest? And you mentioned syntropic farming and, you know, food forest. And there’s this big trend now of like food scaping instead of landscaping. And I make me super excited that people are starting to view things very differently. And I agree. Why not have both rather than one or the other? Some of the systems need to change, like banking systems need to realize that Cleveland is an farmable land. You know that agro forestry and trees and natural capital can actually play a big part in regenerating. But I’m curious to know what is the word regenerative mean to you.
Nick: That is a very good question, because especially in the field of regenerative agriculture, the more we talk to people, the more we realize this. It’s it’s really missing. Eque definition. And for me, you know, one of the most important things and one of the things we should strive for is building topsoil. So if the system builds topsoil, so now this is focused on an agricultural context, maybe not in a business sense, but yeah, it needs to. It needs to produce more then than what’s needed to get it going. So, so that’s the first thing is also kind of a definition of being being sustainable. The original definition in permaculture, so a system that over its lifetime produces more energy than was needed to set it up is sustainable. And I think nowadays sustainability has kind of washed out as a term because now we don’t just need to sustain things. If we sustain the world our lives today, we still have a problem it’s already quite degraded. So that’s why I’m thinking to be regenerative it’s quite important you put lesson. But you get more out over time and it improves over time and get more resilient and stronger. You get more and more nutrients, more life and more and more everything. That’s kind of the very simple, broken down definition that I would use.
Regen Ray: Yeah, I love that, and I agree with you that we in the industry are looking for a definition. And one of the reasons why I want to ask a lot of my guests this question is because I don’t know if there is a universal agreement. And that’s why I say, What does it mean to you? Because I really do believe that it is that their individual soul and heart level, that regenerative can be a little bit different and unique, just like our fingerprint. And so I like the beauty now because we don’t need to have a definition that’s in the dictionary that you know everyone lives by. It can be something that is near and dear to us. And I, you know, I love the way they explain that because like putting less in and getting more out because nature can create a lot without us having to lift a finger. Yet farmers and businesses have always created their net worth by how long they are sitting on a tractor, or how many tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of inputs they’re putting into a system. You know, there’s a bit of an ego there. If you’re not doing bigger numbers of inputs, then you’re not having the yields, and we need to change that narrative because who wouldn’t want to sit under a tree and observe their landscape? And you’d profits from that? Especially, you know, when we start talking about profits per acre and different economies and nutrient dense food, you know, where’s the value of nutrients gone? You know, we’re producing carrots by the container load, but they’ve got no nutrients left in them, you know, so maybe sometimes it’s about growing less carrots that are actually more wholesome and nourishing for for the people eating it? Do you focus a lot around that nutrition side of things?
Nick: I would say it’s kind of. It’s the whole benefits in a sense. So what we have now for the past almost one and a half years when working on our startup, that we call tranfarmers. With that, we kind of went away in bits from this meal doing permaculture stuff because we realized there’s a big issue that especially in the permaculture regenerative scene, there’s a lot of really negative talk towards farmers who are farming in a more conventional industrial way. And I believe that is a big problem because we are all in this field of agriculture together and we need to advance it together. And if it’s always like those, we had a common culture. He’s just saying that the conventional industrial people are just doing a horrible job and killing the soil, that it’s only going to lead to them being like, Hey, no matter what we simply say, I’m not going to do that because for them. And I think that is a very, very big problem. And some of the farmers, we say, Hey, how can we bridge the gap? How can we use many of these great finding these great things about soil health, about nutritious food? And how can we bridge the gap between that and more conventional industrial growing? And how can we get the best of both worlds? Because if we only sit in our tiny Gardens without herbs, sparathon, and hugabeds. That’s also not going to change anything on a on a global scale. And so we need to combine these two systems and now we are working with some farmers working a lot with farmers who call themselves and industrial conventional. But they say, Hey, I want to soil health. I want to grow nutritious food. And that’s also where it now comes in because they also realize, OK, I can grow on hundreds of hectares. I can grow whatever stuff that’s not really nutrient-dense and kind of does a job coming just looking at weight, but it’s not really your food. And also, I don’t want to eat it too much. So we see a lot of push from this and saying, Hey, if I feed my soil instead of my plants. So if I move from fertilizer, that’s just going straight to the roots and then being washed out when it rains to actually using natural processes to bring nutrition. Not only do I get much healthier plants, but the nutrition goes up tremendously and is so much better food it can sell for much more so they can get it. They can get much better profits. They can move away from this commodity markets where prices are determined world market and they can set their own prices because people just see how good the food is growing. And so to answer your question, I don’t focus on nutrition as a as a goal. It’s more of a really nice outcome that you get when you switch your practices to more regenerative ones. So in that case, yes, I focus on it , but it’s not the goal that I’m striving for. It’s just a really perfect benefit that comes on top.
Regen Ray: Yeah, awesome. Like a bit of a by product to do X and you’ll get Y as default. And I really want to highlight what you made a point there because I think sometimes this is what happens is it becomes you against me. And I say this in a lot of the regenerative Facebook groups and so forth, where it becomes a little bit toxic. And I want to acknowledge, you know, farmers want to grow good food. It’s just unfortunate that sometimes they’ve got an advice from the wrong people or they’ve gotten what they think is the best advice from experts who are driven by a motivated money, a different system, you know. And so it’s not about blaming, you know, conventional, regenerative, non-holistic, holistic. That everyone wants to grow great food, and most people got on to farming because they wanted to, you know, live the life of their dream and have their dream farm and grow, produce and bring people together. But the system has let everyone down, not just the farmers, but even us. As consumers and buyers and eaters of the produce. It’s let everyone down and there’s no name blaming. And I think working together and bridging that gap is absolutely what is needed because there are so many farms that we made that say, Look, I want to do something and I’ve got the bank knocking on my door. If I don’t make X amount of dollars, I have to do this because it’s a proven system and they kind of got it back in a corner. And we do need to create some kind of relief for people like that and get people working together and and integrating these new worlds of thinking. So I really admire the fact that you’ve set up the business and focusing on on bridging that gap. And so that was climate farmers dot org and the links will be around around the the the show notes and this video if you’re watching on the Soil Learning Center, I want to ask you about your social media presence because you also have an account called permanent. And I love following it, and that’s how we’ve connected and you create some really cool, fun content. Are you doing all this yourself or do you have a team or where do you get your ideas and inspiration from? Some of it’s kind of fun and cheeky, and some of it’s quite impactful. who’s the mastermind and
Nick: yeah, you. That’s just me and my in my free time. Um, so basically, I have these two kind of roles. So the one the stuff that I’m doing is Permanick is kind of my little hobby side. So I’m working full time now and farmers. We also know Farmers and Farmers Academy as a non-profit and with climate farmers thing. We have the goal of we want to see in five years 10 percent of land in Europe managed and regenerative way, where that’s kind of our gigantic goal at the moment is closer to like zero point one percent. I think so. And then we’re working with large farms that want to transition, even though we’re not the biggest fans of the word transition anymore because we think that it’s not like now you’re shit and you need to get to something good, but it’s more like, Hey, can I have a few more of these practices? It will be good for your soil and also for your bottom line. And so that’s what I’m doing 60 70 hours a week it’s full, full-time job. Definitely the whole educational aspect. So we just launched our first pilot project with Richard Perkins, so they were working together with Richard Perkins and in 10 farms in Europe trying to get more access to them. When we’re talking to other educators, your soil lovers probably know Dorothy, so went talk with them to see if we can do something together, so it’s this huge impacts on on farms on a farm scale. But I’m also a big fan of individual level stuff. And so with my Koning account, it’s more like inspiring people to see, on the one hand, that there is this thing called permaculture that we can start things also on a smaller scale in a garden that we can do things. Also, you know, when you’re just getting into it. So with that in common, my my main goal is just to inspire people to start thinking about things that matter, to start doing also. So, you know, you just get one flower up growing first plant, it’ll be so rewarding. In no time you’ll have 10 and then hundreds it goes from there. So I’m also really I love focusing on practical things that you can easily implement. My biggest passion is definitely water and water management, water harvesting. So I do all these crazy things involving roofs and rainwater pipes and all that. I got into while I was living on Tenerife because there were only 10 days of rain every year, so we had to really capture every drop. And so this kind of like in my free time, you know, when I have spare time I do account, and I know somehow I realize the purely educational costs. I care about them, but that’s about it. You know, like if it’s if it’s just education to be like, go to school and to realize Zuma is just a really great tool to get important messages across. And I tried to make some, you know, memes of permaculture soil and those kind of things. And it works and I think a lot of people kind of get into it because of it, because it’s nonthreatening, like how you don’t have to go to permaculture course, but you know, you just you’re on your phone anyways and then say, Oh, this is permanick guy again , and with his crizer. Maybe I should start something. Maybe I should start covering my soil, you know, so it’s it’s the two worlds, one setting on the smaller scale. Well, so do consulting work in a bit of design, work on smaller firms that are just starting out? And then in the other role, it was kind of the farmers were really focusing on how can we transition the agricultural scene in Europe as a whole? So it’s it’s nice to sit in both seats.
Regen Ray: Absolutely. It reminds me of that little kind of sign of like, think globally but act locally. You know, it’s giving energy to the individual and the corporate, to the one, to the many. You know that that is very, very special to think about, actually. And I’ve really enjoyed the content that you’ve created and makes me laugh and I share some of it because it’s, you know, I relate to it and it’s quite fun. And I like that. I’m being a marketer in an attack guy. I like using different platforms to get a message across because people who like you said before we all learn different and some people like to listen. Some people like to watch. I definitely get addicted to what I call the endless loop of videos that go from one to the other in four hours have passed. And I’m like, God, so much stuff to do. You know, so kudos to you for having so much time and working full time in climate farmers and then also entertaining us on social media, planting those little seeds and really important that one little thing, you know, growing one plant and doing one small action, you know, the seven point eight billion people on the planet. If every single one person did one small thing every day and that compounds and it’s hugely impactful, and it is definitely a testament to the power of the people, you know. So we tend to sit here and wait for legislation to catch up with rules to be created or frameworks to be worked out. It’s like, don’t worry about that, just do something positive today and you’ll be rewarded tomorrow, if not sometimes straight away.
Nick: Yeah, I think just just quickly jump into that. And that’s a really important message also for listeners, because there’s so much stuff going on in the world is really, really bad. And if we wake up in the morning just listening to the news and thinking like, OK, we need to solve all of this at once, we’ll be paralyzed and we never do anything. So what I would really recommend to all the listeners, but also everyone out there, choose one thing and do everything you can to solve it. So for me, that little niche now and kind of became permaculture, you know, I’m going more and more into hydrology. So into the water side and I’m like, Hey, I want to have proper impact There is everyone on the planet. Just shows like these are already big topics, but you know, enough problems out there and everyone just chooses one of them and really says, OK, the rest. I can’t really have an impact on that one. I’m going all in imagine will be possible, but we’re all sitting there like, Oh, no, so much stuff going on. Well, think anyway. I’ll just sit on the couch and watch Netflix, which is fine. I’m not. I don’t want to preach that everyone needs to do something, but just. From the from the how rewarding it feels, I can highly recommend to choose one thing you’re really passionate about. Get into it and you’ll realize there’s so many more people already working on it. You can get together in the next year. And again, this is a big one.
Regen Ray: Yeah, absolutely. And on the Netflix thing, I think what’s Netflix? But what’s a documentary watch the kiss the ground you know something that’s going to inspire you? I definitely believe that, you know, we, you know, coming from the tech world, it’s like Hustle Hustle faster, faster, bigger, bigger. And that’s it doesn’t work for me, if anything, really. No system is sustainable like that. But yeah, I totally agree. Like especially now having these conversations with all people across the world. I’m just like, Wow, everyone’s thinking so big. And you know, I love your hydration focus as well. And I’m curious to know like, what’s your most craziest water hack technique that you can remember of diverting water? You know, because that’s something that people can do in their own backyard.
Nick: The craziest thing. We’ve put a lot of crazy stuff, but maybe one I just recently in the garden. Actually, I haven’t shared it on on Instagram yet. It’s a little the content is certainly to put it into reels and stuff. But basically how it works is we had we had a carpet where we just saw some stuff and they have a drain was broken because it was built in a system anyway, which was not a smart idea by the previous when I saw. I reveal that now into the system, when working with rain pipes that go down below below the copper, then they go through our soil, through the garden and the petch and then the pipe goes up again. And since these pipes are connected like you shaded, the water in them stays always the same. So basically, the water level is just, you know, the roof of the cardboard and then the water goes down under the under the soil so you can walk over, you can drive over it. It’s not in the way, but then it close up. So that means I have water pressure now at the heights of like Want me to 50 a good wall? And from there I can make a different kind of rain pipes with movable elbows and those are actually filling up because we have razor blades like fully fully raise awareness that around a metre high. So yeah, and and they want me to go in from there and diverging through different kind of tees and elbows into these one metre high res a that normally you always have to water by hand. And I feel these raised beds as wicking beds so they have their own water reservoir at the bottom. And then from there, I’m also verging on snow so full it automatically flows into our veggie garden, which is very nice because I like ecosystems and now all our if it rains. I don’t know every every few weeks, once a month, totally enough raised beds get shallow enough water. The veggie garden gets water that normally wouldn’t get it. And also know that you’ve gotten all the walkways, some mulch like wood mulch. And I dug them half a metre deep hole thing so we can store a lot of cubic metres of water also just in there in all pathways. We never have muddy beds. The water is just stored in the pathways. It flows into that from the roof and I build another system also was allowed to use the neighbor’s roof. So from there, I’m diverting water into a little swale system that goes into our food forests. So, yeah, I’m just trying to use every drawer and bring it to places where I need is love.
Regen Ray: That’s so innovative. And, you know, maybe a little bit more complicated in the mechanics of it, but even just, you know, simple swales redirecting water get in the way you need it to be. And you know that that is very interesting as well, because so many people’s backyards will probably if people stop and watch the water and see where it flows, sometimes it doesn’t take a lot of effort just to redirect it down into a garden bed or something like that. You know, you don’t have to get Earth moving machinery in to to redirect water sometimes. And I love the fact that you’ve got like a pipe tank system that doesn’t even interfere with you walking or space. And and the Earth probably keeps it cool too, you know, so it’s it’s it’s a win win win. I want to ask our signature question, which is if you were the voice of our soils, what would you tell us on Earth?
Nick: I would definitely tell everyone on Earth to please keep me covered and undisturbed. I’m very sensitive as a soil, and if I’m not covered, you know, the sun is really hot and burns me. it can get really cold when it rains. A lot of my nutrition washes away. And yeah, please, please just give me cause. And then also, when it’s, you know, keep roots inside of you, that would be really nice because when it rains, you know, I can get hard when I’m going to cover ed. It’s a hard surface on top. It’s like concrete. And then when it rains, it all just washes off and causes floods further down. When she just said past in Germany with catastrophic floods like never before, and it’s more people would cover me, and I really believe in plants inside of me that would be there because. You’re really grateful for that.
Regen Ray: Also, it makes me feel warm and cozy, I was just picturing, you know, the same as we talk ourselves into bed with a blanket and keep ourselves covered. We know we need to nurture our soils with the same attention and care and put in plant life and green leaves. And all that on top has so many benefits from keeping it cool, keeping it warm, you know, erosion, hydration and life and deep roots and all the magical stuff. And hopefully our listeners are starting to learn as they dig deeper into their soils through the podcast and the other information that everyone’s been been sharing. Nick, it’s been an absolute pleasure hanging out with you and chatting all things soil, and we got a guest appearance from your cat, which I’m always open to having guest appearances on our podcast. So thank you very much for coming along. Is there a final thought that you want our soil lovers to think about on their on their day today?
Nick: Yeah, I mean, what I kind of touched upon earlier is religious get going with something. You know, there’s always a reason to not do it because it’s not good enough. Not big enough. Not it’s not whatever you know, but you know, just do a tiny thing. No plant one seeds to do one thing, capture one drop of rainwater. Get active in your community. Just, you know, go to one meeting. That’s what I would really recommend. I don’t try to start to big to perfect, but just get out there and start doing
Regen Ray: love that something little is better than nothing. So you had it first. Soil lovers, get on out there, get your hands dirty and keep digging deeper into your soils. Nick, thank you so much for coming along and sharing all your wisdom and knowledge and tips and tricks. How can people hang out with you? What’s a site or link that people can go to?
Nick: I think the easiest where I’m most Instagram, so it’s a Permanick permaculture that should be easy to find. Also now I’m slowly growing and growing my presence on TikTok because the video format is just really hilarious. I think those those two places are the best otherwise permanick dot com. Yeah, but it’s more of a local website, so it just has some info. It’s all the fun is happening on on Instagram and TikTok.
Regen Ray: Yeah, I love that. I definitely feeling that as well. I am starting to do a little bit more in tiktok and it’s it’s such a weird platform to get my head around. I feel all sometimes which I am when we get older, but I just feel like what the hell is going on? But it’s lots of fun and I do think there’s some really fun stuff that we can do as soil lovers on Tik Tok and be cheeky as well, and they let you get on with your morning. Thank you very much for getting up early to join us today. We’ll keep keep the conversation going offline. All those links that Nick mentioned will be around the video in the show notes.
Nick: Thanks so much for having me.
Regen Ray: Excellent.well soil lovers there you have it get on outside, get your hands dirty and keep digging deeper into your soils. I’ll keep drumming that into you. And remember, if you want to watch the video version of these head on over to Soil Learning Center dot com.