Harvesting Water the Permaculture Way DVD Review provides you with an overview of this DVD and my opinion of the product. I watched the video again last night and went through all of the bonus features and give my report below.
This DVD is narrated by Geoff Lawton and is about a water harvesting project he and his students worked on in Woolgoogla, Australia. The project site is 6 acres and the DVD shows the project from start to finish. They start with the landowner explaining his desires and then move to Geoff and crew doing a survey of the land and using a laser level to mark the project. Geoff explains the importance of the laser level and explains how to set it up and use it. Geoff explains that the project will consist of a swale feeding a pond with the overflow of the pond going out another swale to a spillway.
In one area of the property Geoff points out that there was a fire at one point in time that changed the clay soil to terracotta and that this type of soil in this one particular area could not be used to hold water. Fires were commonly used to clear land and brush and is the likely cause of the terracotta.
They then bring in the heavy equipment and begin digging. They first moved the topsoil off to the side for later use. Then they dug a hole where the dam wall was going to be so they could put in a keyway system. Then they started building the dam wall followed by the swales and spillway. Geoff explains why he does certain things which really helps you understand what is going on and why. They also ran into several real world issues that they had to design around.
Extras – Earthworks Around the Globe
In this extras section Geoff shows pictures of different project that he has worked on throughout the globe. He shows the picture, explains the problems, and then explains the solutions. He discusses swales, ponds, dam & keyway, A-frame level, and a bamboo water wheel.
Extras – Interview with Geoff Lawton
This section is an interview with Geoff Lawton where he explains how he got into permaculture. He actually grew up in England and later moved to Australia. He took his PDC with Bill Mollison and was at first a skeptic. He now leads the Permaculture Research Institute (PRI) and briefly describes the direction of the PRI.
Extras – Greening the Desert
Greening the Desert is one of the PRI’s biggest successes and is described here. This project was done in Jordan near the Dead Sea, on salt flats that were 400M below sea level.
This is a great video to pick up some of the details that you might not have fully understood in a PDC. Every time I watch it I pick up something. Now that it is free to watch online, I would have to recommend it as a must watch for anyone who ever wants to or will do any kind of earthworks for water harvesting.
I did a search for the DVD and found that it can be viewed online at: http://permaculturenews.org/2008/04/11/harvesting-water-dvd-released/
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