Ft. Collins Permaculture Design Course Announced!

PDC poster

The Growing Project is excited to announce our 2015/2016 Permaculture Design Course! The Permaculture Design Certificate course is a seventy-two hour (minimum) training experience. Students who complete the full curriculum will earn the internationally-recognized Permaculture Design Certificate. Through an engaging mix of lecture, hands-on group activities, and real-world design projects, participants will gain a comprehensive understanding of ecological thinking and how to apply it in a variety of contexts.

The Fort Collins PDC is on the 3rd weekend of the month starting in August 2015 and ending in March 2016 (skipping December).

Instructors include Adam Brock (Denver), Kelly Simmons (Boulder), and Patrick Padden (Fort Collins).

Early bird tickets available now! For more information visit www.thegrowingproject.org or email info@thegrowingproject.org.

Call to Action: Support Greywater Legislation!

Hello Concerned Citizens of Colorado!

Some of you may have heard that our state will be adopting a new Water law about Greywater Re-use. It has been in the works for almost 2 years and we are on the verge of a final public hearing. If you believe in water re-use and conservation, Please write to the CDPHE (cdphe.wqcc@state.co.us) with the message below and/or come out to support efficient and practical greywater solutions on April 13th from 9:30-5 at:

Florence Sabin Conference Room
Department of Public Health and Environment
4300 Cherry Creek Drive South
Denver CO 80246.

Wear something green to support the inclusion of “Fruit and Nut trees and other plants where the edible or medicinal part does not touch the soil or water directly” This is one of our big hurtles in the allowance of truly ecological greywater systems. The beaurocratic process can be slow and frustrating. Please come prepared to wait for your moment to share your thoughts. This public hearing will be addressing the adoption of two new regulations (Reg 61 & Reg 86) and Regulation 86, the greywater rules will be second in the process and therefore it will be discussed later in the day. As a stakeholder in the process, I will have several minutes to state my case in favor of less stringent regulation and the allowance of fruit and nut trees. The case would be made stronger with public support at key moments and an audience wearing green. In the CDPHE notice to stakeholders, public participation is encouraged “The commission encourages all interested persons to provide their opinions or recommendations regarding the matters to be addressed in this rulemaking hearing, either orally at the hearing or in writing prior to or at the hearing. Although oral testimony from those with party status and other interested persons will be received at the hearing, the time available for such oral testimony may be limited. The commission requests that all interested persons submit to the commission any available information that may be relevant in considering the noticed proposals.”

Feel free to read the current Draft of Regulation 86 here (ftp://ft.dphe.state.co.us/wqc/wqcc/61_86GraywaterRMH/61_86_Notice1504.pdf). (Note: Many people spell it GrEywater to support Ecological Solutions, but the CDPHE spells it GrAywater) If you have time to read the draft, please submit your concerns to (cdphe.wqcc@state.co.us). If you would like to support our effort for less stringent regulation and the adoption of ecological solutions, please send this message to (cdphe.wqcc@state.co.us):

To the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment – Water Quality Control Commission

Re: Graywater Regulation 86 Public Comments
I support the efficient and practical graywater solutions laid out in Regulation 86. I want to encourage my local county and city to adopt this law with minimal restrictions, and I believe that “mulch basins” provide the most ecologically robust solution for dealing with graywater irrigation. They are practical, affordable, and can utilize gravity to convey the greywater to the landscape without the oversight of complex engineering, pumps, or filters. I plan to use my laundry machine to irrigate my landscape and would like to see a simple permit for those types of simple systems. I also believe that the best beneficial use of graywater is for watering fruit and nut trees, and other plants where the edible part does not touch the soil or water directly. I have never heard of anyone getting sick from an apple on a tree where graywater was used for irrigation, and scientific research supports this approach. For toilet flushing systems, I would like to see less restrictive rules for decontamination, since this water will be used for flushing waste. I support the adoption of Regulation 86 and would like to see these rules become less strict, so that we the people can utilize ecological solutions for our land and the environment. Thank you for your time.
__________(your name)

Please feel free to share this message with your networks so that we might have a big impact on how this law gets adopted. If you want to learn more about greywater, how it can be used, and why it matters, check out www.ColoradoGreywater.com and stay tuned for our upcoming workshops, services, and events after this law is finalized.

For the Earth,

Avery Ellis


Denver Crop Mobs! Join us.

Ekar Farm Kids

Hi everyone: I wanted to extend an invitation to the folks on this list to help out at our crop mobs this year.

For those who don’t know it, the Denver Crop Mob program seeks to help with urban agriculture and food justice efforts by coordinating volunteer days. We’ve built raised beds and hugelkulturs, sheet mulched, planted gardens, gleaned post-harvest crops and sometime just pulled weeds and cleared land for future urban ag endeavors, on behalf of organizations and individuals – for or not-for-profit – involved in and serious about this movement.

We’ve taken the old fashioned Amish barn raising as a model, thinking that a good way to build community is to work side by side for 4 hours (mobs run from 8 – 12) – and then relax and eat side by side, as the host serves a hot, sit-down lunch after the work is done. Through these interactions, we make and solidify our connections with the others in our community, explicitly asserting our commitment to the reality of interdependency that defines a robust community.

As I understand it, this is a part of what David means as he talks about nurturing healthy relationships, increasing or range of interactions, and so forth.

In other words, if we’re serious about building community, then showing up when our fellow community members need our help will naturally one of our primary care-abouts.

And so I would encourage you all to consider participating in the crop mobs program this year, as both hosts and volunteers where applicable. After all, in the Amish model, it was primarily farmers and their families, as well as other community members and craftspeople, helping other farmers. We’re going for the same dynamic here.

I have 3 crop mobs currently scheduled, although I generally only post one at a time (to keep up, you can join our FB page here, or simply keep an eye on the Greater Denver Urban Homesteaders meetup schedule – it’s a gold mine for cool events.

This spring’s first mob will be at Ekar Farm, an org that donated over 11,000 pounds of fresh produce to the hungry and in-need last year, well worth your support! You can find more info and a link to register here. I hope to see many of you this season at crop mobs!

Peace, Oz Osborn