THE CIRCLE OF GREEN is our framework, our methodology, a way of breaking down the various processes of work and reflection that are created, grown and brought to fruition through the growing and provision of our farm produce. We grow vegetables as well as fruits as part of our green produce commitment. Through growing our produce, we hope to be part of a more wholistic and wholesome cycle of life. Through our green produce, we hope to embed values and inculcate a culture of care, thoughtfulness, respect and gratitude for all those who bring us a precious sustenance to the human race – food. Through our deliberate and conscious awareness of the multiple layers of mutual participation in the Circle of Green, we hope to provide or gift food that is not just healthy but happy and humane as well. We hope to gift a special kind of lifesource and energy – organic food that remembers and reveres our humanity.
Our methodology is nothing new. We are inspired by traditional farming and homegarden methods, new farming technologies that truly respect life and preserve the ecosystem, natural farming of Fukuoka and the permaculture wisdom of Bill Mollison and Geoff Lawton. Our methology is very much about trying, adapting and striving to do our very best to renew the earth and its food produce – the soil, the seeds, the natural growing process, the light footprints in packaging and delivery, the honouring, education and renewal of the rural and agricultural livelihood, and the transformational growth and healing of the community participating in the Circle of Green.
The Circle of Green begins with an impulse – a wanting, a need; a call.
GREEN IMPULSE begins with a deep dissatisfaction leading to the impulse to want to do something different. Not just different, but something better. Something more right. Something more healthy – purer, cleaner. Something more truthful. Something less destructive. During the preparation stage, one reads up on agriculture. One reads up about traces of pesticides being ingested and digested into our body daily. One reads about food security. One observes other solutions. One decides the way forward for himself or herself. One selects a spot on the ground, a part of earth where one begins the new work. One breaks ground. One commits. One stops waiting. One stops the cycle of the unsustainable by simply picking up a shovel and digging. And one sets forth the journey of green renewal.
Find the right soil and the right compost. Design a garden or farm or forest in complete consultation with the impacted stakeholders. Being a steward is not about brilliance or tyranny of ideals, but about service. What is best served by our work? Be mindful of the chain of actions and reactions of the new work – vertical, horizontal and generational. Be mindful of the tradeoffs. And admit to the tradeoffs. Make note of it and circle back to refine the design. Always be humble and listen to good counsel in making the tough decisions.
Then having prepared the growing area and the soil to the best of our ability, the next step is to find healthy seeds.
SEEDING GREEN is a process where one starts a nursery – of cultivating, collecting and preserving seeds. Not just any seed, but strong, organic seeds. One learns about germination, about tending to the young and about patience. We will need seeds to start the Circle of Green. One realises exactly the significance of every seed; how very precious every single healthy and organic seed is. No seed, no Circle of Green. Be in complete awareness and gratitude of our seed source. Remember to label all the seeds and set up a seed bank, so that we can preserve a sustainable Circle of Green as well as help others start their Circles of Green.
We will need a designated area with sunlight, water, potting soil, compost in small pots or seeding tray. For the seed bank, we will need an organising area and lots of jars.
Once the younglings are ready, we are ready to transport them and ourselves to the growing bed.
GROWING GREEN At the growing beds, our task biggest task is to nurture and cooperate with nature for our younglings to grow at its own pace and become food – the fruits of our tendering. The entire process of care, thoughtfulness, respect and gratitude becomes part of the growing process. The quality of the nutrients in the soil, the water and a bio-diverse growing environment all contribute to the quality of the produce. We cannot over-water, over-fertilise, nor over-protect, especially via failure intolerant- shortened gratification-standardised beautification processes such as growth hormones, artificial lighting and inorganic pesticides. The quality of the produce is in its resilience in being able to receive and process the various energies for conversion and transformation into green energy primarily through photosynthesis, which in turn becomes our food and energy source.
We literally become what we eat. If we eat strong and resilient produce, we become that much stronger and that much more resilient. We in turn convert the green energy into human energy for the work that is required of humanity to create and thus, plough back into the ecosystem of energies.
When the time comes for harvesting, we would have said our necessary goodbyes in preparation for the letting-go.
HARVESTING GREEN The green harvest is a time of total joy. A time of celebration and a time of thanksgiving because the green produce is now ready to leave its roots and become transformed into human energy. The more we are ready for the separation, the more ready the green produce is ready for doing its work for the earth and humanity. So, thank, thank, thank with full gratefulness and celebrate, celebrate, celebrate!
There is one thing that we have consistently experienced. Healthier green produce is always that much tastier – there is a certain depth of flavour that one notices but can’t quite put a finger to it (and in fact one can’t reproduce)! When younglings are grown in an environment which is both nurturing and appropriately challenged, there is a certain optimal complexity that becomes embodied in the green produce. It is as if the green produce has a certain depth of character that is unique and artful. Every green produce even looks different as the emphasis is not in forcing a standardised beauty! We certainly hope this converts to potential human energy that is much more vibrant and colourful too!
After the harvest, the adventure truly begins for the green produce as it begins its travel.
PACKING & TRAVELLING GREEN After the harvest, the green produce will need to be packed for bringing to the ultimate beneficiaries. We do not want to laden the green produce with unnecessary carbon baggage, so we keep to travelling light. As we are proud of the strong and unique beauty of our green produce, we don’t need to dress it up further, nor stick unnecessary labels. Our destination is always kept to a place where the green produce is most needed and within the lightest carbon footprints.
We keep to a one day from harvesting to delivery timing in order to keep the green energy fresh for its purposeful consumption. We do provide a little air-conditioning for our little green friends during travel in very hot, extreme climates in order to ensure all green produce makes it to their destination.
After mindful packing and thoughtful travel, the green produce is ready to be received!
COLLECTING GREEN The collection process is like welcoming home a loved one and a great one! The green produce has arrived to give forth itself in order for the ultimate nourishment of human beings. We do not criticise the unique sun blemishes of the loved one as being defective. We do not complain about the odd wrinkle caused by the packing and tiring travel. Instead, we honour the courage of the journey of the green produce by scooping it up with a whoop and a welcoming spirit of being the recipient of great, great blessing! The green unsung hero has arrived in our lives!
After picking up the green produce from the collection station, we are ready to bring the green produce home.
PREPARING GREEN Home is where the heart and green produce is. Eating green is not just about eating, but about also cooking green.
How we wash the produce, prepare the produce, and cook the produce – with care, with a certain sense of treasuring – is all part of the process of transformation of green energy into our body, mind and soul.
We add equally healthy and interesting spices and oil to enhance the green energy conversion. The topmost important ingredient is love! All those who have experienced the magic of a meal cooked by a happy and loved one know exactly what we mean by the healing miracles brought forth from a kitchen of love.
EATING GREEN is also a commitment to make a full ceremony of friendship and love that a meal facilitates and brings forth. May our green produce allow stimulating meal conversations, bonding, growth, and especially, nourishment for those grieving and in recovery. May our green produce transform the bodily and emotional pain into new nourishment and wisdom of the necessity of passing and renewals in the circle of life.
In other words, on top of adding just the right oil and spices, don’t be afraid to add one’s own unique blend of life and soul into our food for the ultimate strong and amazing transformation of green to human energy.
Once ingested, our body takes over. Those not ingested, we return immediately. Those ingested, we take a while longer to return as we need to figure how best to return the energy.
RETURNING GREEN The unused green produce in the kitchen can be composted in a wormbin or if you have a garden, in a compost corner, so that it can be returned as organic fertilisers for the earth in supporting the various lifeforms in the earth as well as support the next generation of green produce. For the spare produce, we can preserve as jams or pickled fruits and vegetables for the future.
What does one do with Green Energy? One lives through it and because of it, as one learns to gift life – in every form of what it means to live a healthy, happy and humane life.
GREEN LIVELIHOOD We respect and honour the people who have chosen to commit to grow and provide us with fresh, organic and happy produce. We treat all individuals participating in the Circle of Green – the seed bankers, the compost and soil providers, the growers, the packers, the transporters, the green grocers, the chef, the preservers, the green storytellers – with utmost care, thoughtfulness, respect and gratitude in the same manner of honour we treat the green produce. We strive to provide a respectful, meaningful and equitable green livelihood to the community through our endeavours. We provide the necessary education and training for all those who are new to the Circle of Green and also renewal opportunities for those who seek to deepen their dedication.
GREEN LIVELINESS Whilst the green energy is being absorbed into our body, we ponder about how we can contribute meaningfully to the earth and its inhabitants through our daily work and the way we live. We open up our farms for the education, awareness and inspiration to a new way of living that treasures, honours and brings forth many Circles of Green in every facet of our lives. We choose to commit and live in joy and celebration of the bountiful fruits of our labour!
GIFTING GREEN In our daily commitment in turning the Circle of Green, we choose to gift a healthy, happy and humane life. We thank you for allowing us to be a part of your beautiful lives. When you take a bite of the green produce from our farms, may you always experience the rainbow of life in every encounter with the Circle of Green.
May you always feel the vibrancy of life. With every pulsing, may you feel the courage and impulse to continually re-examine. With new insights, may you be fuelled by the green energy to find the determination to breakthrough and begin anew and refreshed, again and again – always healthy, happy & humane for your every new Circle of Green.