Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Great Program at River Bend

Last night River Bend Nature Center hosted Jan Spencer of Suburban Permaculture for a presentation on suburban transformation through permaculture.

Jan's presentation centered around what he considered the sensible actions we should all be taking:

  • Downsize material lifestyle
  • Reorient ourselves to live within what the Earth can accommodate
  • Green homes, neighborhoods, communities, culture and economy
Personally, I was happy to hear Jan talk about the importance of civics. Too few people get involved with their local government and if we are to make progress, local action can have significant results faster. "Think globally, act locally." This saying was highlighted in Jan's talk by the examples of actions taken by individuals which are having an impact on his communities.

The crowd was relatively small but very interested. We agreed to set up a mailing list and look at ways we can help one another in our own initiatives and possibly collaborate on projects in the future.

Several questions came up about what is and is not permitted by the city. 
  - Can chicken/livestock be kept in the city? Yes, with certain restrictions. Permits are required which require inspection by animal control. No roosters, guineas or peafowl are permitted (noise). Livestock also require a permit and inspections. 
  - Can citizens harvest pecans from public property? (I wasn't able to find anything in the ordinance, but have a question pending with the city.)
  - Can homeowners plant vegetable gardens in their front yards, if there is no Homeowner Association restriction? (Again, I wasn't able to find any restriction in the ordinances, but have asked for a reading from the city.)

We also got an update about the community garden being organized on the east side of town.

If you missed the presentation, you missed a lot of ideas. We all learned what a "woofer" is (and no, it has nothing to do with a sound system.)

For now, I am going to encourage those interested in this topic to post their thoughts on the Living Green Facebook Page or comment here.

1 comment:

  1. A speedy response from the city. There is no prohibition about harvesting pecans from the ground. However, there is a state law that prohibits harvesting pecans still on the tree. Second, there is no prohibition (absent a homeowner's association prohibition) for front yard vegetable or flower gardens as long as they are weed free.