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Inside the UMass Permaculture Garden Crew: Matt Lee

My name is Matt. This past year I was on the Permaculture committee and now I'm a part of the UMassPermaculture Summer Garden Crew! This upcoming semester will be the start of my fifth year at UMass (my last semester!).  I'm really happy and excited to have the opportunity to work in the gardens this summer.
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RS2014: What Exactly is a “Regenerative Food System”?

The 2014 Revisioning Sustainability Conference, (or RS2014) is a 4-day immersive educational experience at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. The focus of RS2014 is going “beyond sustainability” discuss the benefits of incorporating “regenerative” practices into food systems at campuses across the nation. Running from June 22nd to the 25th, RS2014 is geared toward faculty, sustainability and dining staff, and students interested in improving their campus food systems.
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Trash Fish at UMass Dining

Trash Fish. They’re the fish you don’t usually meet: the Dog Fish, the Yellowtail Rockfish, the Sand Dab…Also known as Rough Fish, these fish species are more populated (sometimes invasive!) but just as delicious as better-known species.Good news: UMass already sources all third-party certified fish in the DC’s. However, even these sustainably caught fish species come from distant places such as Salmon wild-caught from Alaska. By purchasing Trash Fish, fisheries are given a market for catch that they traditionally throw back into the ocean.
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Grow Your Own at UMass: Indoor Herb Gardening

Spring is just around the corner and what a better way to start it off by planting an indoor herb garden. You’re probably thinking to yourself “how do I plant an indoor herb garden when I live in a college dorm room”? No worries!
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What's the Deal with GMOs?

Personal opinions aside, we know this is a highly controversial topic in foodservice. So we were wondering.. What’s the deal with GMOs?What are GMOs?You may have heard of a genetically modified organism (GMO) or maybe you’ve seen the Non-GMO stamp of approval on food products in the grocery store but what are GMOs and what is the story behind them?DefinitionA genetically modified organism (GMO) has undergone a transfer or removal of genes from one organism to another altering the DNA of that organism.
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Agroforestry at UMass Amherst

Agroforestry is an ecological approach to farming that incorporates trees as a central element of an agricultural system. Agroforestry pays close attention to the ecology of a landscape, or the relationship between different species. The idea is that by adding trees to an ecosystem the environmental, social, and economic value of that ecosystem will be improved.
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Re-defining the Garden Weed: The Dynamic Accumulator

Weeds get a lot of negative press, but once you’ve heard about dynamic accumulators you’ll be open to using weeds as an active and functional part of your garden. There are hundreds of weeds out there that don’t deserve the harsh treatment we’ve so commonly given them. In fact an area of land with a lot of weeds usually is an indicator of soil health, and nitrogen richness which many of the fruits and veggies we eat need to thrive.
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Revisioning Sustainability 2014: An Introduction

With the arrival of a cold, white, snowy winter, we at UMass Permaculture can’t help but think about the prospects of a green spring thaw! We’re brimming with anticipation for our most exciting event of the spring, the 2014 Revisioning Sustainability Conference.
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Green Walls: A Multifunctional Urban Gardening Technique

Vertical gardening has picked up a lot of speed in urban agricultural movements in recent years, and people are beginning to develop these structures more readily. The reason for this could be because of the obvious benefits that a green wall, or vertical garden brings to an urban area. The title Green Wall does an apt job of describing what a green wall actually is: a vertical surface (aka a wall) with vegetation growing up it. Think of your average city with plants not only growing out of windows but on the walls themselves.
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Hydroponic Systems - The Future of Farming?

A rapidly growing trend in modern agriculture is a method of growing called hydroponics. The utilization and research of hydroponically grown food with has an extensive history, however recently it has been proposed as a solution to the downfalls of modern monoculture farming and as a way to improve our overall food systems.  Hydroponic Vegetables are grown without soil in a water-based system that utilizes a mineral nutrient solution.
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