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In 2008 Simply Permaculture carefully started with a few silky chickens pottering around the garden. We were not used to having our own animals and we just enjoyed looking at them and having a tiny egg or two. Slowly we started to become more familiar and our livestock has grown steadily. It was logical to have pigs so that they would eat all the leftovers during the busy summer months and the surplus of pears and apples in the autumn. We got more and more chickens, also for consumption and introduced ducks to our pond at the bottom of the hill. We figured that we have the space and the ability to offer a good live and good food to our animals. In this way we know what they have eaten and that they have been cuddled and loved. It is not easy to take the live of an animal and it is hard to face it. But we decided we rather face that knowing the animal has had a good live, than to close our eyes and buy meat from animals who have lived in terrible circumstances.
We are learning with the years, because not only is it fun to have the animals around, to have ducklings growing and see the pigs play, we also learned that they can help with the chores around the farm by doing what they like to do best. Chickens love scratching and pecking and within no time they will clear out a space for you from the weeds and greens and eat some of the bacteria’s and diseases as well that you wouldn’t necessarily want to have there. Pigs love to turn the soil and they are perfect to plough a small part of the land when the ground is not too hard. They will eat the plants away until the roots and make that parcel ready for you to plant new trees and bushes. Too many snails in the garden? No worry it is like sushi for the ducks and they will run to be first to eat as many as possible.
Then with slowly increasing the biodiversity on our land, planting more and more trees and not interfering too much with nature, we started to notice how more insects and therefore also larger animals are coming back. Suddenly the children come and show us stick insects and praying mantises in the summer time. We notice more often a deer or a hare in the field and for a few years now we have owls and other birds of prey nesting.

Simply Bed & Breakfast, St. Jean de Duras, South West France

Garden to visit | Permaculture | Place to Stay

Come and visit our 5 hectare permaculture garden. A lovely outing for friends, the entire family, groups or schools. Regular guided tours and workshops. Situated in Saint Jean de Duras, between Bergerac, Duras & Eymet on the border of the Lot et Garonne et Dordogne departments

Sandra & Santi: Bonac, 47120, Saint Jean de Duras
I: www.simplypermaculture.com
E: hello @ simplypermaculture.com
T:+33 (0) 681768594
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