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‘Events’ Category

Les foodingues at David Lynch’s Parisian Club !

September 11th, 2013

Silencio, Paris – Sept 7, 2013 / 8 PMsilencio_program1
The Crazy wild plants and the Foodingues are taking over a few hours, the Silencio, the private club designed by David Lynch, just for a casual culinary performance made up of wild forage plants, for the club members, at the occasion of the release of the book le “Manifeste Gourmand des Herbes Folles” , the wild forage plant manifesto, written by Diana Ubarrechena, George Oxley and Gérard Ducerf, at the éditions du Toucan.

Bunches of wild flowers are glittering in neverending vasarelian mirrors… nithing about decoration…

we are talking serious food to be crunched by special gourmets.


The menu has been designed according to the salvage natural of the master of the place, David Lynch :

GREEN VELVETS : a shot of green aphrodisiac Gazpacho of hogweed, Hieracleum sphondyllum, meadowsweet, Filipendula ulmaria, plantain, Plantago lanceolata and Plantago major, and bishop’s weed, Aegopodium podragraria.

CRUSTY MEDITATIONS : Croustillant of comfrey, Symphitum officinalis, bladderwrack seaweed, Fucus vesiculosus, Nori, Porphyra, chickweed, Stellaria media… on a creamy line of weld Reseda phyteuma

MULHOLLAND SEEDS WITH THE LOST DUO OF ODD SALMONS : quinotto of whelk broth and grilled psychedellic seaweed , with a salmon preserved in carob syrup, carbonised seaweed and mandarine flavored Hogweed seeds, with its’ companion salmon preserved in meadowsweet with ultradry sherry wine, altogether topped with a bunch of Cardamine sprouts.

LOST HIGHWAY SHERBETS : 1 spoon of frozen blackberry on top of a blackberry sprout sherbet; a glass of Frozen yogurt with meadow sweet and malt.

We wellcome our guest on green velvet… starting with an aphrodisiac shot, unhibiting, to shape our guest in the best form possible in order to appreciate this feast and wipe off all the residues of bad, fast and too heavy Parisian food from the outside : the ultra fresh aphrodisiac hogweed, with it’s chlorophylle to the top, mixed with two varieties of plantain against allergies, Meadowsweet the best digestiv and vein cleaner, and the gout weed or bishop’s weed, to drain all the heavy food excesses.

Then it is a brick of false fish with fake mustard : We are just being the stock exchange, the temple of virtual money, so a bit of irony will do: why not give some fake stuff which is better than the true one : F For Fake, thank you Orson Welles… comfrey is the Dover sole of the forest, a total fraud when mixed with the glutinous seaweeds… Chevreul_nadar a mix of nori, the ones of the sushi, but crop by us under the cliffs of Varengeville and the Fucus the famous bladder fucus sold in farmacy as diet food complement to loose weight. To this one line of Reseda cream, the plant which led to the discovery of cholesterol and the antioxidant : the lucky charm plat of the famous chemist Chevreuil, who has search all his life on the tricks and principles of immortality , who died at 104 of sorrow to have lost his 85 years old child. He was given a burial with the National honour for the foundamental services he rendered to humanity.Chevreul_nadar

After these meditations on immortality, the truth and the fake which finally comes out victorious; we decided to put our steps in the sinuous ones of David Lynch to finally bump into a salmon duo lost in Mulholland drive : a banality at first, which sinks into the gluey moving grains of a quinotto to finish on spines which are in fact savory carbonised crispy seaweeds. It is precisely there that we collide with these big pinkish salmons, banal and vulgar, fresh from the deep American MidWest, with king size carton schooners in their hands. But the intriguing was that from the near, their Irish orangy pink was in fact black for the one and green for the other; a complexity with undescribable tastes that merits a little pose in order to start writing a TV soap opera. By chance here is just a tousled hairy Cardamine ! It stand for “to tame the heart” in Greek and scientists just found that it produced nevronic acid the precusor of the myeline of our brain… enough to keep running the serial for many seasons…

Finally lets’ get back on the Lost Highways, that we thought sinister and unhuman, for fantoms and zombis… Yes, yes, they tried to tell just the same things with the hogweed. It is for this plant that was invented the first herbicide : just imagine the favored food, wild forage of the English countryside… the cause of too many births… if you make it disapear there will be less poor in the world… simple no? They even pretended that it was the same plant as the Caucasian hogweed, which produce photosensitivity… A hogweed form the east carpates dracul which turns you into lubricity without any possibility of seeing the sun anymore… and Bram Stoker invents Dracula, the lusty vampire who must hide from the sun…dracul

No! Lost Highways are in fact the last refuge of liberty, where all delight are allowed, wher a frozen blackberry can pose on a blackerry sprout sherbet to get exploded by its’ astringent sweet and sour, where a frozen yogurt birsts with voluptuous meadowsweet and malt, to announce the total licence of the noight…

- Wild forage plants, listen now ! Her is your place, luxury, calm, voluptuous … SILENCIO


I must say as a post scriptum, that the public has been at the height of the place : passionate, curious, hedonists and connoisseurs. I will just unveal the identity of one of them : the great baker Christophe Vasseur , from the bakery du Pain et des Idées, rue de Marseille, Paris 10°, who is now part of the French culinary Heritage though so young, wity and inventiv.

“mass destruction, the geopolitic of hunger” or “Man’s head draught”?

November 1st, 2011

Jean Ziegler just published “the geopolitic of famine”.
As International civil servant and consultant, Mr Ziegler is a good man trying to keep the world famine in focus of the rich countries.9782021061154_1_m

These experts have done so all their life in the XXth century, while famine reached its utmost record level, spreading in their own country. Today they indignate themselves without putting to trial their own responsability.

Jean Ziegler takes for example the Bambara peasant in Mali, who gets a 100 time less wheat crop than in Ohio. For Ziegler it comes from the lack of fertilizer.

Ziegler has the reflexes of his century, but I’m afraid the problem relies elsewhere. The problem is ideological, brought by westernized agronomic engineers who try to contamitate the spirit of peasants they consirder uncult, without trying to find out local solutions. Tilling the soil and spraying it with fertilizers, is just like supporting “hydroponic” agriculture : to apply the same formula without giving a damn to the local richness of the soil. Agriculture and nature is not at all approached, under its’ scientific side, but with all the ideology needed to sell more fertilizers from the rich countries.
All that to grow wheat, an international market monoculture, while the aim is to make food localy… For this purpose wheat can be considered as a starvation crop in comparison to amaranth 3 times more nutritiv… without speaking of all the local and varied alternativs.

If they need fertilizers they have termite soil : termites digest together with the mycelium they crop, all the organic matter to make the most complex sugars which are considered as the richest fertilizer on earth. In temperate countries we have lombric compost, in Africa we have termite compost. But beware it is extremely powerfull. To much of it kills, like too much luxury. You need to control the amount by watching the biodindicator plants to be sure not to produce nitrites and aluminites which will contaminate your food and which are the cause in Europe of nervous syndroms as Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, etc. Unless you want to develop a drug industry to remediate your foul doings, and make more money.
Remember also that the chemical fertilizers are mostly salts. They already have a desert why do you want to ad salt to their fate. The crucial problem for the Bambara in Mali is climate change,with the access to water.
Here the proble is more ignorance than drought :  “Man’s head drought” as they say in Mali.
But water should not be a problem today. At SOS SOiL, Alain Gachet with his reading of the NASA’s radar satellite images, has find the sustainable table water for the Darfour refugees. These water tables are a real kick for agriculture… But the agronomic exploitors use it to plant their GMO seeds and spread their chemistry… Most of the plans for aid for Africa to fight famine art the last Copenhagen Conference, where trials in big of manipulated seeds forbidden in the North.
Mr Ziegler, I know you are a good man. It maybe time to draw conclusions in the thinking process you are using : it is a good thing to indignate yourself just before retiring. It could be more wise to switch methods, instead of promoting machinery, chemistry and hard work to develop the poor man’s agriculture. Look for more sustainable plans nourrished by local ressources, creativity and permanent soil cultivation and self enrichment : a smarter agriculture.
This especially for someone who has dedicated his life to development in a time when malnutrition raised by 1000. It is time to open new trails, instead of trying to justify old lost crusades. Remember people are starving as you talk.

Dont see any polemic n this post : by speaking of Ziegler I speak about hunger and the fight against it. Plato who knew Anaxamander, the first guy to calculate the circumference of the earth when everybody thought it was flat, 600 years BC, Plato nether spoke about him, to avoid any publicity he could give him. To ignore Anaxamander was a way to kill the theory of a round planet turning arounf the sun, in the egg. By doing so, Plato killed Giordano Bruno .

One year after being organic …

July 1st, 2011

Good news, this year in the estancia we are advising in the Salta area in Argentina (100,000acres), we got half of the rainfall we usually get. 500mm instead of 1000mm.
The owner just mailed me that they croped four times more food for the cattle.

This winter will be the first winter the animals wont starve.
Just as a reminder, this is the result of a Uturn towards holistic agriculture, bringing cows back to eating grass, from heading towards the wall with transgenic corn and sorgho. Cows are not chicken.
Sorry to have you kept off from all the advice we have applied there. Action has been a priority to the SOSSOIL team.

A good tip to melt the arctic

October 13th, 2010

One hundred and thirty meters long, thirty wide, the Russians are in the final phase of the construction of the first floating nuclear power plant, capable of producing electricity for 45 000 homes. Good.

It is the first unit of eight others planified.

September the 15th 2007, the European Space Agency announces for the first time that the road is wide open. the ice has melted sufficiently to think seriously about a commercial transit in the edges of the arctic. Tokyo is now only 14 100 km from Rotterdam instead of 21 000km via the Suez Canal. China has never been that close to the European market.


Specially designed boats went on exploring the brand new road for the past years. But since 2010, the journey is done by new types of ship. This summer, the biggest ever seen was the super tanker SCF-Baltica of 115 000 TPL, escorted by two ice-breakers (the Rossiya and the 50-Let-Pobedy). Shortly followed by the Nordic-Barents of 183 m long and 43 700 TPL.

The Russian container carrier Monchegork and the ferry Georg-Ots made the journey as well. But nothing unusual there as the Monchegorsk owned by the Norilsk Nickel Corp. can travel amid 1,5m thick ice.

As we see this road is still uncertain. Although the ice is melting at a good and steady pace, not anybody is ready to put his boat at risk yet.

So how is it possible to secure the seasonal spread of ice?
What a better solution than to install 8 flating nuclear power stations along the road with the excuse of producing electricity and hot water to the abandoned arctic populations? The nuclear power being cooled by the ice.
Alexander Soljenitsyn, if the goulags still existed they could be heated.


And on the financial front, what’s new? We are starting carbon credits.

“Now is the opportunity for the farmers to demonstrate what they kept telling me for years : we are the guies who look after the countryside, we do not want to spoil the wilde life”

June 14th, 2010

What an entry, what a start on the BBC.

This is Jim Paice, the brand new British minister of agriculture, launching his new policy “those guies who have been telling me for years, they are the best people to protect nature; now it is time they prove it.”

The minister seems to be willing to take the bull by its’ horns, once for all, echoing a European directive on wildelife preservation that no other country in Europe dares to address. Yes it is possible to cultivate without distroying nature. Other ways exist to get similar yields without systematically distroying nature as it has been done for the past 40 years.

Jim Paice knows what he is talking about. As agronomist he has often been shadow minister in the past 40 years; still he remains the one and only European minister to come out from the general flegmatic position. Anyone who follows his programme will be helped. The 6 billion budget of his ministry and the European subsidies are also here to help and convince. You pollute? You distroy nature? No aid. Lets see now if it is just a politician announcement. But the gesture is to be saluted. The Green Party would not even dare this.

In fact, we went too far : What have we done in the name of higher yields? The XXth has been a “seculus horribilis” for nature. Where is the famous farmer’s common sens?

In 1945, there was 6 to 8 millions brown hares in the British isles, today 600 000.
4 millions wild pheasant, today 200 000.
82% red grouses, 93% black grouses, have disapeared. Capercaillies? they were betwin 50 to 70000 in 1970. Today 2 200; though it is a protected species.
Gray partridges? 80% have disapeared in 40 years, only 242 000 are remaining.
And migrating birds, we have no record on them, they have no country.
All these figures come from the Game Conservancy Trust. After reading “A Question of Balance” you feel like having read a report on a true silent genocide… hushed.

Hunting? A ridiculous impact. Hunters have even tried to reintroduce game; which has been quickly forbidden as it degenerated the wild animal species, and made them disapear even more effenciently.

No. With total impunity we have left things being done. We have supported and financed an agriculture which uses always more chemicals, heavy and consumming machinary.

But it is fare to say, after all, that everything which has been developped for the war… barbeled wire, orange gaz, tanks… Once peace is back, you have to find new clients for all this; convert the factories; find new markets.

Zyclon B, the sadly famous gaz invented by 1918 Nobel Prize winner Frantz Haber, has killed 6 millions jews, became an insecticide; the orange agent, designed to eradicate the rice paddies and the famish Japan and China in 1945, which is also responsible for generation of deaths and chronicle diseases among the Vietnamese population, became a famous herbicide…
We have put all these weapons of mass destruction in the hands of the farmers. It is normal to get some collateral damages and aftermaths at one point, isn’t it.

This arsenal is expensive as well. It needs credit… so now we have trapped the farmer in the credit chain of banks, unions, coops, machinaries, chemistry, super markets, etc. what has he got left? Debts? Not always hopefully. This system has also brought success.

But what about the partridge living on this land? Who really cares anyway. We till the land, weed its’ pantry, eradicate all the insects before he can eat one, cut off all the hedges where he nests… What is a partridge in front of food security? The magic word has been said. Security, the master word overpowering anything.

The system sounds familiar anyway. A bit like the falling banking system, it now shows its limits : yields are declining, soil are getting worn out. Questions are being raised about this non ending arm race of fertilizers and pesticides.

Stop, lets stop this moralizing and sterile speech. Lets just state that we are experiencing the limits of an old production system which brought damage. Now that we have made some progress in science with a better knowledge of the living world, we have safer roads to head for.

This could be what James Paice is saying, by “protecting the little birds” and the beauty of the countryside; A fine excuse as populist and politically correct as the word Security.

Solutions exists. He knows them. Science, cellular microbiology, botanics, all these sciences hushed during the green revolution time, allow us to have a better understanding about the soil, plants, their life and needs… Entomology allows us to better understand how insects can be valuable to protect crops… We have now the means and the techniques to understand what is going on there : a better understand Life.

Bacteria, nematode, mycelium, worms, spiders, partridge… all are part of a food chain, a biodiversity for which the balance is warrant of the quality and sustainibility of our agriculture and environnement.

Nice words? No? This week Haitians have burned the seeds Monsanto was offering them. They had eaten the seeds to replant, so the US sent transgenic corn… with the herbicide kit which goes together. If they would have accepted, they would have been trapped in the system as well.

The political reasons of tilling, are not to be proven anymore, as it has been chronicled in details at the time of the Shoguns in Japan (cf. the mad rice) ; The blind use of pesticides and fertilizers without paying any attention to what already is in the soil … Further now here is a demonstration of the success of what we are advising to the farmers in Argentina and Europe. It has been broadcasted at the 8 O’clock news on the most popular French TV channel. (sorry it is in French, soon an English version will be available).

[flashvideo file=le-ver.mov/my-video.flv /]
It is possible to have better yields while protecting nature.
No tilling, intercroping and planting plant communities, fertilizers, nutrients and minerals according to what is lacking.
Also important in agriculture is to support biodiversity. For this it is of Public importance to stop tilling, as to stop the use of any kind of synthetic chemicals products. Each year the SOS SOiL team is proving it with success on fields from 200 acres in Europe to 100 000 acres in Argentina.
Yes we can. People should know about it.

Everything can happen… the "Queer" of transgenics to rescue the GMO "Queen"

February 24th, 2010

Take a look at these splendid potatoes… more than 3000 varieties, one for everyday, for the next 10 years…

But now you will get the transgenic “duke of York”, the GMO “King Edward”… the GMO “British Queen”…

Excellent… the brand new Royal GMO potato family brought to you by the incredible mad hatter… no, no, sorry, stop. Where is “Prince Charles”?

I wanted to talk about the new potato collection prepared for you by the icon of transgenic labs, the Sainsbury foundation of England. It has succeeded to get the GREEN light (dont laugh) to plant them, as test, behind barbled wired high fences, under high security and arms. One must remind that this Sainsbury lab has nothing to do with the supermarket chain of the same name, the first big chain to kick away GMOs from their shops.

Transgenic what for? To resist blight, the desease which provoqued the Irish famine, the allmighty scarecrow to pass any GMO in the UK. Transgenic as well to resist to nematods, the little invisible worms eating the potatoes before we do. Of course each transgenic potato has its’ own specialty, you cannot get all at a time, choose your disease comrad…

How glorious it is to see that the same tricks and recipies still work like in the old time, use fear to swallow something even more dreadfull; cuddling intelligence by tetanizing it, a good old tradition of warriors to tackle good sens with terror.

Save the world from famine? defend our crops from climate change? This is what the GMO fans of Albion are running for. They chose their defender of the moment in the person of Lord Chris Smith, chairman of the Environment Agency; who better?. The eminent former member of government, daring and utmost sympathetic, the first politician to declare his homosexuality and seroposivity at the parliament, an event at the time. A man of guts. He is now testing the British public opinion on GMOs. What a wierd political communication strategy: the “Queer” of transgenic to rescue the GMO “Queen”, before the great battle in Brussels to be led by the European governments and pro GMO Manuel Barroso. Perfide Albion.

GMOs have to pass at any cost… Potato so easy to replant and multiply… it has to be controled totally by BASF and the other true serious corporations.

Biologists know perfectly well that Blight is a mushroom and that any mushroom can be controled by another mushroom; when you use the oyster mushroom mycelium for example, you also boost your potato crop. As for nematodes are killed by Tagetes Minuta, a plant that grows everywhere on the planet and particularly in association with the potato. It would be interesting to give some basic information about botanics to the farmers… they are supposed to deal with plants everyday, but they dont know the basics. They are not the only ones, but sometimes we can ask ourselves if it is not so on purpose.

Nature is jolly well done, isnt it? But if farmers start to think like this, they wont buy any drugs from any company. How can you milk a farmer if he starts to do so? How can you finance our good old European corporations, sustain solid infrastructures, get a serious political class? Say, where would go our world if it was free to do what it wanted? If peasants were free to produce their own seeds, fertilizers and remedies?

To feed the world? in reality the target is rather confused :

“A star(ch) is born” announces BASF, with its legendary German humour. Starch, yes; to make your paper more glossy, your Savile Row suite even more stif, your threads shiny. 20 years now, that they have been working on selecting the starch potato from potatoes they croped in Mexico and Peru. Biopiratry? What are you talking about? They are true researchers who have created a potato, a “novel” product. To show that it is THEIR OWN creation, they inoculated to it a marker gene. Here the marker is a gene resistant to antibiotics protecting us against E. Coli and other agents provocateurs of nosocomial diseases. Thanks.

Yes you read well, they inoculated a potato with a gene resistant to the antibiotic kanamycine, the antibiotic which helps us to survive from a bacterial disease, all this to recognize THEIR POTATO, which they have patented.

They named the potatoe amFLORA, probably for its beautiful flowers (flora in latin). Because it makes flowers, which is the traditionnal way to select and intercross the genes.

“My dear MPs, potato has also its’ sexual life, it is no mystery”.

Ouch, what a coming out : it takes 20 years to obtain a new potato by crossing potato flowers and get proper seeds.

“This gene cannot be transmitted to man, because this potato is not for eating and the reproduction through flowers is neglectible”. They gave it as little name : amFLORA… strange German humour? Because pollen goes from one flower to another. It is so light, that a slight breeze can bring it up to the stratosphere. From there it can turn around the world and one day fall anywhere, maybe on a potato for man or a pig. Maybe it can seduce a pollinator… can you imagine the amount of pollen in thousands of hectares of potato fields needed by the industry?

The Sainsbury lab, seems more pragmatic: “why wait 20 years to create a blight or nematod resistant potato when we can stick the gene right away?” Life is so simple. But in the first hand, why spending so much money on a problem which has been solved with success for more than 2000 years? You only need to know about it? Sorry for the XIXth century Irishmen. You need to teach the peasants. Why hide them the truth? Three cheers for BIODIVERSITY. One must learn from it and use it.

Hopefully we live in a wonderfull world… Farmers are claiming for a GMO free label, special to label the meat and the milk which is produced without feeding on imported trans soy from Brasil and Argentina for which we are the N°1 clients.

Lets forget for a while the pollen, the planet and its’ stratosphere, lets dream…

Are pesticides changing of climate or of planet?

December 11th, 2009

Dear friends, an incredible thing happenned this week, on the side of the Copenhagen Climate Conference, a true mental climate change, heart warming, a real good news : the very respected Routhamsted Center for Research is communicating on the fact that there you dont need pesticide and fertilizer to produce corn.

Yes, you are not dreaming, the news is coming from one of the most advancedhigh tech agro lab in Europe, heir to the 2nd world war effort, to the tradition of the inventors of the Orange Agent, the GM crops, etc. Prof. John Pickett chief of the Pesticide and fongicide department, recently renamed “Biological Chemistry Laboratory” of the centeralso renamed “sutainable pest and disease management centre”, those who have invented the synthetic Pyrethrum, as welle as many other products that we find in the end in our plates, that we fix little by little in our body while eating vegetable and fruits. And suddenly without notice this package of pesticide and fertilizer is producing toxic algaes on our shores, killing the animals which eat them. we would like to transform this biomass but it is not yet a priority, hence the million euros it is costing already (800M euros in France only) (by the way dont see anything religious in the biomass).

Of course the very sympathetic professor Pickett is not denying his old love in inorganic chemistry and magic powders which make the joy of commerce and debt of the farmers. But now his speach is clear and radical on the BBC and on the web “Developping countries, you dont need pesticides and fertilizer anymore to grow your corn: we ahve designed for you the “Push & Pull” technique, which will enhance your crops by 50 to 600%.

What is it all about? To use what nature is offering us to get bthe best out of it at the lowest cost possible.

More than a generous soil and water, to grow, corn needs two things : nitrogen as fertilizer and to avoid the small worms of corn borer, little mothswho elected the corn pods as the five star hatchery of the century. Our brillant lab nspired itself from the research of the famous botanist Josia Braun-Blanquet, published in 1922 in his book “the plant sociology”; a book sold out, which I finaly was able to get when Bradford University’s library decided to clean up its shelves from its’ old books, judged unfitted for the modern farmer.

Still, Braun-Blanquet’s “the Plant sociology” as Rudolf Steiner’s “Agriculture courses” de Rudolf Steiner, the “inventor” of biodynamy, should be the two reference books for any farmer, to my opinion.

So what are we talking about? To plant corm together with two other plants : one to protect it against pests, the other to purvey fertilizer and attract all the insects predators of the pests.

The first is a gramineae, the Pennisetum purpureum, better known as the elephant grass, as it can reach 3m high and is the appreciated by all the dumbos of Kenya. It is also the preferate food of corn stem borers. the little moth which destroys corn likes it better than corn: but when it lay its eggs on it the intelligent plant knows exactly what to do : it produces a liquid which disolve the eggs. How impresive is nature, dont you find? Above all the roots of thos plant does not spread at the same level as corn, it goes far deeper and so it stops erosion and helps water to penetrate the soil far better while keeping humidity for the corn which really needs it in summer. Our herb is stopping soil perspiration. Not bad.

The second plant to be sown together with the corn is a legume, the Desmodium Ssp, a sort of bean. It is well known now, the legumes are champions to fix in the soil the nitrogen of the air, thanks to the nodosities they have in their roots and to the bunch of fungi mycelia it lives together with. So no need of fertilizer for the corn anymore. The Desmodium Ssp. also produce nice little pink flowers which attract all the tiny wasps of the area, like young teens around the last Galliano’s perfume. And guess what? The preferate food of these wasps is the little moths which threat the corns and which our elephant grass attracts in such quantities. Desmodium can fix up to 200 to 250kg of nitrogen in an hectare, Remember in Agriculture the excess is always worse than the countrary. In case there is two much nitrogen our legume are going to provoque the growth of asteraceae, little flowers and medicinal plants which also attract the helpfull tiny wasps and other pollinators.

So as we are planting, why not some asteraceae all around the field, like sunflower or the famous Yacon, Yacon root Smallanthus sonchifolia, and what about some radishes like the Raphanus sativus niger, or maca, Lepidium meyenii, which will bring their dose of sulfur and keep the predators away from our asteraceaes…

The result? Instead of just one crop of corn, we get more and better corn, fourage for the cattle, a crop of sunflower seeds, of yacon roots, black and horse radish and maca full of vitamins. Not bad at all.

Above all we will have a nice green field of year long, full of flowers and life. Because to get a good result we do not till the soil; the desmodium and the corn are sown direct and the rest simply cast on top of the soil. Not too tiring, is it? Above all the desmodium and the elephant grass is perennial. Once it is sown it there for years and the field will always be fertilized and humid.

At the same time as introducing this protocole to cultivate corn in Argentina, we started a second protocole to destress the paesant in charge of the kitchen garden. We called it the protocole of the Inca, as it is inspired from the ancien techniques found in the archeological remains around Puno in Peru, along the Titicaca lake, a technique which is still used by the Hopi indians in the States :

In the same rectangle we have sown all the different varieties of corn we could find, all different colours. The farmer wanted absolutly to till the land by hand, though we told us that it was of no use. You see if he does not work he feals he does not diserve his salary. Any work means to be paid, even if it useless.

At the foot of each stem of corn we told him to plant a pea a bean and a green bean, in between each rows we told him to pant pumkin and other cucurbitaceae. At the end of the row facing the sun a yacon root and opposite a sunflower, all around radishes and maca. His little garden suddenly transformed itself into a plat village, in which each plant has its role among the community in a perfect harmony, enriching the soil and preserving water. All grows perfectly well and in a few days we will get 7 crops instead of our only crop of corn.

With all this biodiversity of food we have now to be clever on gastronomy. If everybody follows this example, it gives hope for the future of food security of our planet.

This is what I call a good demo of agricultural design.

This example needs to be followed, to forget about all these scaremongers who want to sell their chemistry as an excuse to save the planet, when they destroy it. Thank you and bravo Professor Pickett.

Remember, December 1984, 25 years ago : Bhopal, hundreds of thousands of dead in one night and the environment destroyed for god knows ho long. In Bhopal, Dominique Lapierre is still fighting to help the survivors to recover and live decently ; apart from giving all the rights of his world best seller books to the foundation “City of Joy”, he travels the whole planet to spread the message so that it wont happen never again.

If we had explained to the Indian farmers that they could do without pesticide to accomplish the Green Revolution, it wouldn’t have happened. One does not build a factory that creates no benefit.

Remember the Zyclon B of the Nazi camps, 5 million dead ; more recently the organophosphorus gas projectiles received by the Kurdes of Halabja in 1988, Falloujah in 2004, Lebanon in 2006 … Here are the type of “side products” of the research you are supporting when buying pesticides. Think it over, pesticide and herbicide are meant to kill.

There is no use in killing nature blindly. Learn about life and how it works first. You can earn much more by applying the sort of techniques we have described today.

Fiesta day at the Gauchos'

November 27th, 2009

We are in the Province of Salta, North West Argentina, at the exact spot where started the Independence movement In Southern America, 200 years ago; in the Estancia from where the general Arenales left to liberate the Andes from his Spanish fellow citizen.

“ The Angel of victory is guiding my banner : follow his route towards independence and glory… go for Arenales : who flies from victory to victory, so that my army can secure on the battle field, the complete emancipation of the INCA SOIL.”


1812. This is how General San Martin, the founding father of Argentina, fine communicator as usual, adresses to the Calchaquis Diaguitas native Indians to introduce them his armoured arm, who is about to take over the banner left by the glorious Güemes, dying on the battlefield.

Salta is taken; the path of the Andes is now open.

To get rid of the Spagnards from the Old Continent, San Martin invents the White Inca : General Juan Antonio Álvarez de Arenales ;
He will serve just for this duty, as for the Inca, the world will quickly get rid of him, once his mission accomplished.gauch2

What the great San Martin didn’t realize, is that his words have created a myth much more crucial to Argentina’s soul : as the White Inca poped out of his hat, he launched the myth of the Gaucho, which is haunting South America’s poet and litterature since then, like Edgar A Poe’s raven.

gauch01In the beginning, a Gaucho, is the indian who responded to the call of San Martin. Gaucho comes from Huachu, in Quechua, the language of the Andes, it means orphan. The one who has no family to take care of and who can sacrifice himself to “the complete emancipation of the INCA SOIL”.

This day, an army rose from the mountains, moving towards the hope of a society where Indians would have the same rights as the whites. This is how Argentina’s Independance has been “sold” to the natives. This what the gauchos went for fighting for the Caciques who wanted to replace the former Spanish Caciques.

gauch02The gaucho, is bound to be the orphan of Liberty. Not a professional soldier, nor a man of arms at all, the man reveals himself on the edge of the apocalypse, ready to achieve any act of prowess to give his soul to justice. Then gently, goes back in the rank, to take care of his kin and cattle.gauch4

gauch detail1

But if he has nobody to take care of, he will flee from his heart, his ungratefull mountains and stray in the immense Pampa, at the measure of his melancoly, his vanished expectations, his blues; in mother nature, his cursed sister.
The Nahual is the animal side of the native indian, the side which brings the gaucho Pablo out of himself, alone with his knife to slay down a 2,5m long cougar (head to tail); because it was eating his poultry, he became a jaguar.

Today it is Fiesta time. It is Santa Rosa de Lima, the patronness of the Army of Liberation, the Saint of the Estancia of the White Inca ; They all appeared from the mountains in their best costumes, shining new on their best peruvian horses, with their proud cedence march, to dismlay high up the colours of liberty.

helicoToday the true Gaucho’s spirit revives : gouver
200 years after the White Inca, the governor of the Province of Salta steps down of his helicopter to pay them an homage.

To pray with them.

For him, they killed two bulls, they put on fire during the whole week the village hoven big as a house, and prepared the Asado and the Guisado.

viande tripes viande cotevainde assietteviande cousueVIANDE5viande4VIANDE3pieds

Here, to carve flesh, is “savoir vivre”. Eating is to kill. No detour, no shame in front of death.

The Guisado : all the tender bits of the animal are marinated in oil, vinegar, herbs, garlic and chillies; sown back in the beast to be roasted in the hoven for 12 hours..

The Asado : ribs and trips are prepared, hoofs packed, heart embroched, Bife de Chorizo, sirloin, everything goes to the BBQ on agonizing ashes, at the verge of extinction to cook for a slow and penetrating heat.


Each bit of meat, each bite of this banquet for a 1000 guests, we bite history, we chew a ritual, it is magic we are eating. The bull has been sacrified and shared as the ancestors used to. Wine, aguardiente and Ferney Branca is flooding.


DéCOUPEThe best day of the year. The discreet gaucho talks, smiles, slightly unveils his character ; but the woman? she stays at distance and marking respect. chinita1They are not at all what you call the staff canteen of the regiment. Very few women are gaucho and the more often they are the true leader of the gang; They wear the long skirt as real amazons : they are called the chinitas, the little chinese girls, becaus of the long days spent in the cattle’s dust which have slanted the eyes of her craggy indian face for ever. chinita2

Aguardiente, Ferney, Wine, We are here to praise the ancestors. Masters of the World, lassos are flying, bulls are caught and blocked, so and so, in fact it is far less precise than on a regular working day in the corral. The horses got it all : it is now leading and taking care of everything. Men are all absorbed in theeuphoria of their myth and the bull is jubilating. Like the Texan cowboy myth and his rodeo? Nothing to do with.


The gaucho, according to a writer from Argentina, is a myth similar to Faust, the Divine Comedy, a local Don Quichotte : Martin Fierro. Quite a name! Proud as the blade of San Martin ! To create his popular character popular, Jose Hernandez the famous writer, admired by the creme de la creme of the XIXth century litterature… turned him into a white man protecting the poor and the orfan from the evil black man. I slightly caricature, but it sales better. John Wayne as a Sioux doesn’t fit very well. Here a black means an Indian. According to the Argentinian imagery, very often it is better considered to be an Afro American, than an Indian. Here dignity has its’ scale, that an Indian could not climb. Hopefully things are changing.

Martin Fierro, this is how the young Jorge Luis Borges, the absolute icone of the Argentina’s blues, named his first gang… of dedicated poetry. The gaucho is for him the ultimate resource for the soul of South America. According to Borges and his friends, it must be part of the spirit of the young continent, in order to emancipate itself from the distant Europe, constant and tedious reference as his compatriots’ everyday reference. A need of space and fresh air.


But Borges remained a son of Ulysses and the gaucho a son of the Inca. They ignore each other. It is the drama of a continent. Although, along all the roads in Argentina, at the smallest track in the desert, there are little altars always under a caroub tree, dedicated to Gauchito Gil, the Robin Hood of the cactus. Nobody mentions it. It belongs to poor people’s culture. Any humble person exchanges with him a libation for a miracle. The Saint Gaucho will never be officially recognized.

Always a caroub tree. The tree which fertilizes the soil. Once more the Gaucho is full of resources. He shows the way; let us hear the Indian hushed up in our innermost thoughts.

By neglecting him, we are oblivious of so many things. We tend to use always the same methods without asking ourselves if it is realy adapted to the place. Stop. Lets bring back a little imagination. In 10 years Argentina has flouded its land with transgenic soy, without a single moment thinking of what and who was the victim of this sacrifice. This year unemployed Gauchos are protesting on the roads of Argentina. Halt. It doesn’t make sense. Lets’ open our eyes. At the eve of the Bicentenial of the creation of Argentina, lets’ change, lets’ listen to the indian, as we have a lot to gain from this exchange of ideas.


A biodiversity splash on your teeth

November 9th, 2009

A toothpaste to protect Nature.
foret de verveine
1200 different plants. This is what we found on the 100 000 acres where we work North West Argentina, in three weeks. In reality we found about 400; the botanist knows he does not see everything. When he spots a plant in the piece of nature he is studying for the first time, he knows that for each plant he finds, he misses two. The botanist is a sort of humble boaster.

1200 plants is 1/5 of all European plants. 6000 plants make the entire biodiversity of France, Britain, Belgium and Germany all together. On 6000 plants, maybe 2000 are eatable, 1000 are excellent. In a supermarket? You will get 27 at most. Abondant Nature and society of penury, a culture of poverty?

The last five years of his life, I used to meet, the more often I could, Theodore Monod, the famous naturalist as he left everyday his office at the Natural Science Museum of Paris. We used to stray and tease the absurd : all the jellyfish, shrimps and crabs along the Saint Louis Island, along the river Seine, to speak plant and liberty.

Biodiversity is a beautiful thing, so special that we want to protect it. A true family jewel hat we put right away at the bank in the depth of a tunnel in an island away from Oslo : the “Svalbard Global Seed Vault“, “the Noah Ark of our planetary biological inheritage” brags Jens Stoltenberg, Norway’s prime minister. When you know that the inventors of herbicides participate in these experiences, where the hell is liberty hiding?

Noah’s Ark. After us the deluge. To live is to evolve. What is the point of taking away these seeds from life. A better way to preserve biodiversity would be to recognize it, use it, experience it, live it.

1200 plants in a domain which raises 7000 cattle, it is not the best way to protect Nature either. Why protect them anyway? Before we came nobody cared about these plants; they annoy everybody, the calves doesn’t eat it, it grows everywhere, invades the pastures. “Yuyus”, bad weeds. The realm of plants and the realm of farmers are two world apart, ignoring each other. Biodiversity frightens us, we fight it, eradicate it in order to have neat homogenous fields. Biodiversity? What is it? a great choice of mobile phones?

But when you are 3 hours away from the nearest supermarket and drugstore, what do you do? A single swelling river and you are stuck. Still everything comes from the city, except meat of course. If you are sick, you just wait until it stops.

Here, it used to be the land of the Calchaquis and Diaguitas Indians. In Argentina, it is well known, there is no native Indians left. The ones spared by the White Man have been cought back by influenza. In 1621, the Duke of Palota was already complaining to the King of Spain about the loss of work force, deceminated by the epidemies brought by the White Man.

The Native Indians of today does not recognize themselves in their ancestors. It is not fashionable to be a native Indian; as if everybody would be from Spanish ascendency. The White Man, Influenza, the other plague pointed by all archeological researches is tooth decay, tooth ache. Not a single Precolombian crane with decent teeth. When the new owners of the domain arrived here 5 years ago, nobody had good teeth. The priority was to bring a dentist.

Influenza, tooth decay? Here we have everything at hand to cure. But nobody uses them anymore. Old woman’s trick, Native Indian’s paraphernalia, no white blouse to look into your mouth, not serious.

Hopefully the money dedicated to research in pharmacology has vanished, the curiosity of people has risen, Claude Levy Strauss came to tell us that native communities could be as interesting as ours… a revolutionary “sans culotte” of the colonial spirit.

The Americans started a blocus on Cuba. In la Havane, bright doctors found themselves with no medicine anymore. The only salvation, to be witty; altenative knowledges, which they started to analyse with their scientific methods. Understand plants, listen to ancient herbalists… a little of ethnobotany can be fascinating : the encounter of botanic, medicine and its’ clinic tests, the ethnology of the local uses of plants. Man and Nature. A brand new world. The most brilliant brains of South America followed swiftly in the eighties setting the basis of a great evolution marching on.

There is maca, for the minerals and vitamins and a whole bunch of other plants to reeforce immunitary defences. Amaranth, with its calcium, magnesium, phosphorus…

Decay? Aloysia triphylla

Sensitive gums? Bulnesia sarmentoi

Influenza? Berberis buxifolia (against the virus of influenza A and B), the Eupatorium Ssp…

A sore throat? White Quebracho, Acanthospermum hispidum, Lomatia hirsuta, Turnera afrodisiaca…, Cough? Conyza bonariensis, Geoffroea decorticans…

Beware, you need to know how to use them. Apart from knowing them you need to study their toxicity; if they can cure, some can kill you. Without falling into a cheap psychose, you would better ask a specialist first.

The aim here is to have something available for first aid. Be selfsufficiant and not dependent from a faraway city. Understand biodiversity, be able to use it. For this you need first to put a name on each plant. It is the first step to protect it. After you have to learn the protocoles to be able to make plant tinctures to isolate the most interesting activ principles in order to preserve them and have them at hand to cure.

Tinctures, phytotherapy, Argentina, the world pioneer in transgenic soy, is not the better market to start with this sort of natural medicine. We need to think in something else more simple. While discussing with the adorable old man taking care of the vegetable garden, about the ancient ways to chew coca leaves, a plant came to my mind which could replace calcium bicarbonate, the base of toothpaste. This is it. We need to design a toothpaste; a product used everyday by everybody.

Telephon calls, meetings with the most respected dental lab in Argentina, then with the Dental University of Tucuman and the Foundation of Plant research in Argentina. It seems that they are all looking for an alternativ toothpaste to the Fluoride ones which are being critisized for their impact on the environment.

The deal is settled. Five formulas are created. The University and the foundation will study them and check their inocuity, the eventual counter indications. We are at the verge of releasing the first organic and fairtrade toothpaste. Probably one of the first product made from ethnobotany with the collaboration of the recipients of this ancestral culture, certified by modern science.

Everybody to your toothbrushes, Thanks to you 40 000 acres are going to stay preserved.

Nasa’s Space Shuttle flies for agriculture

May 23rd, 2009

While everyone focusses on important space missions, we have put NASA’s space shuttle to work for agriculture thanks to our colleague Alain Gachet.

During its’ revolution around the earth, the space shuttle is scanning the earth surface with a radar which penetrates down to 30 meters under the earth surface. Then these images are analyzed and worked on with sophisticated softwares. Alain, is an engineer from the Ecole des Mines de Paris, explorator and geologist who has found petrol for Elf/Total during 20 years. He knows about the earth morphology better than anyone. The imagery of the shuttle helps him to peal literally the earth like an onion, displaying all its layers.

Thanks to this work we can find water for the farmers.

For our project in Peru, in Lambayeque, to reabilitate a desertic land which has been worn out by years of ill agricultural pratices and overgrazing, this technique has brought back water in a sustainable way :

sasape-imag-satelite-bajaHere is the 30 000acres domain on the surface satelite image.

Perou_SASAPE Water2

Then we come to the radar satelite image to understand the geology of the place and how water organises itself : where are the water collector bassins, in which direction and where exactly they go; the exact GPS points where to dig and at which deapth can we go without hindering long lasting reservoirs.

Here we take into account only the sustainable reservoirs which are apermanently affluent. We do not touch at all the permanent reservoir which could fear any danger of disappearing and caus a long term catastrophy in case they disappear.

Perou_SASAPE Water2On the above image we are following water underground. At the surface, on the photo below, nothing shows.

sasapesurfaceDeeper, we go minus 30m meters underground.

Perou_SASAPE relief2

By using this technique which he developped Alain has found water for the refugees in Darfour. the United Nations by the director general of Unesco have just officialy thanked him for saving more than 300 000 réfugiés in Darfour. From now on the Pentagone is preparing with him missions to find water in Irak, Afghanistan, Somalia…

Concerning agriculture the images treated by Alain also allow us to understand how the soil functions : to understand all the erosion process going on.

Example in Argentina : her we see South America from the space shuttle.

pampa-grande-argentina-location-mapThe dark squares are apparently sites that the army doies not want us to see. Lets get closer to where we work :

salta-zoomed-area-landsat-3d2Closer. Her we have targeted a little to high; we arrive just in the lake where goes all the water of the estancia we are advising.

coronel-mandes-synclinorium2Lets get closer and play with the image so that we can understand the geological process, teh different rocks and the impact of water on the spot. First an image to get a global view on the whole region.

pampa-grande-argentina-location-map1-2This image shows the climat impact on the domain.

All the water comes from the Amazonia. Our destiny is totally dependent on the fate of the forest. All the Eastern side of the mountains are green and our land is on the boarder with the desert. Our position is very fragile; therefore we have to find all the buffer solutions possible against climat change. This image points it clear, it should be our utmost priority. We must bring back this land to green, which on the satelite it is not for the moment. Plant trees and better management of the water ressources.

Lets get closer.

fond-landsat-7-4-2-et-transectsThis land is dreadfully less green than it should be. Far less than the spaces untouched by man. What has happened?

fond-topo-couleur-et-transectsToute l’eau du domaine se dirige vers B’ et l’on dirait que rien ne pousse là.

Etudions les coupes de terrain que nous fournit la navette depuis l’espace :

coupe-abThe whole land is in total erosion. We have here alluvions which are all taken aay by the river: look at the cross sections to better understand the process :

coupe-cdWhat on the ground seems flat is absolutly not in reality. Giving the fragile composition of the soil, at long term everything can collapse to become a canyon. We must protect the sites which already shows sign of transformation in canyon. Avoid all kind of treading by the cattle in some area. lets get closer:

zoom-pampa-grande-landsat-transectscoupe-ab1If we do not act, everything is going to collapse gently. We must avoid all kind of chemicals, forbid glyfosate, stop weeding. In order to prevent erosion we must count on any plant possible to retain the soil.

Without any ground experience we would not be able to understand things that way of course, but the images from the shuttle, the knowledge of Alain and his imagery, allow us to set our priorities. We are experiencing a true revolution for agriculture and sustainable development.

The Space Shuttle is comforting us in our choice for natural agriculture the way Masanobu Fukuoka used to do it : to understand nature by all means and turn it into an ally to cultivate and feed man.