Radiolab just published an excellent podcast “From Tree to Shining Tree” that touches on forest ecology, mycology, and also whole systems design theory; it’s and enlightening episode to say the least. You can have a listen for yourself on the player here. Speaking of mycology, my friend Peter McCoy‘s excellent tome Radical Mycology recently sold out of it’s first 3000 printing! But, as of right now it is currently in stock on so grab it while it’s hot from Chthaeus Press. If you would like a small taste of the material covered check out the Radical Mycology Zine in the resources section of this site. Peter is about to embark on cross country Radical Mycology book tour that will include an awesome presentation on mycology for the novice or expert alike. You can find the tour dates here.
For a long while Mycology was overlooked, underappreciated and regarded as a somewhat archane science in the fields of biology, ecology, and even Permaculture design. It is so encouraging to see that through the hard work of folks like Peter, Paul Stamets, Mara Fae Penfil and many others mycology is quickly becoming much more accesible and part of our everyday lives, which is great for us and especially for the plan
I recently attended the debut of a excellent little web series that examines the idea of the “American Dream” while also exploring a various co-ops, co-housing, and other intentional communities within the U.S.
Created by three ambitious Evergreen State College students (Soph, Haley, Nate hence their clever project name Sohana). The series impressed me with it’s quality footage and editing and especially the insights it brought to mind. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did and share it within your communities.
From my good friend Peter of the Radical Mycology collective:
The spores are in the wind!
We are excited and honored to announce that the Radical Mycology Book is now available for sale at the publishers website www.chthaeus.com! At the link you can find sections samples to get a taste of some of the book’s topics.
After two long years in the works, this nearly 700-page text is a one stop reference for diving deep into the world of fungal biology, ecology, cultural influences, cultivation, remediation, and a lot more. We are thrilled with how it came out. To celebrate the release, all book purchases for the next 3 days are discounted and also include a free 16.6×17.25″ 3 color (red, black, and metallic gold) poster of the book’s cover.
Also, this Saturday
we are celebrating in Portland at TaborSpace
(5441 SE Belmont St). If you can’t make it out to the live event, you can watch via livestream here: http://bit.ly/rmbooksteam
. We hope you can make it in some form.
For the fungi!
The Radical Mycology Collective
- Recomposing Life – August 7th-9th – Portland, OR
When permaculture curriculum was first developed there were a couple of areas that just didn’t get enough attention. One of those areas was mycology and how the regenerative and abundantly productive nature of mushrooms factors into ecosystem and human health. Well, that is changing as the Radical Mycology has stepped up to offer free resources, pay what you can courses and community oriented strategies for culture change.
Since the initial germination of Radical Mycology in 2006, one of the biggest goals of the project has always been to create stronger connections between amateur mycologists, activists, and grassroots bioremediators working to increase the health and resilience of their communities and environment. Over the years, the Radical Mycology Collective–an anchor point in the larger Radical Mycology movement–has strived to achieve this goal through a variety of means. With the creation and release of free media and educational videos, the group has offered simple and accessible methods for cultivating fungi for food, medicine, and the regeneration of damaged landscapes. By organizing three internationally attended Radical Mycology Convergences, the Collective has worked to build a greater sense of community amongst the many isolated pockets of mushroom cultivators and radical ecologists while simultaneously sharing the often inaccessible skills of working with fungi in a unique format. In the fall of 2014, the group went on a 3-month cross continent tour to share their knowledge and skills with over 40 different community groups and organizations. Along the way, the group discovered a strong desire amongst their collaborators and new friends to understand the fungi and integrate their gifts into the common struggle for finding better ways to live sustainably on the earth.
Course topics include:
- Guiding principles for allying with fungi
- Fungal biology and ecology
- Forays in Tryon state park
- Mushroom and lichen ID for habitat protection and cultivation
- Low cost mushroom and mycorrhizae cultivation for food, medicine, and remediation
- Integrating fungi into landscapes
- The chemistry and treatment of common industrial pollutants
- Low cost soil and water testing practices
- Medicinal mushroom processing and intuiting
- Mycomimicry in social organizing and self care
- The somatic experience of fungi
- Mushrooms as sexual beings
- Anti-oppression work in mycology
- Evening discussions on dark ecologies and the philosophy of fungi
- On-site Installations
The setting for Recomposing Life will be Tryon Life Community (TLC) Farm in Portland, OR.
TLC is a small farm and community that seeks to provide space for events and organizations that support the advancement of community-based sustainability and social change and the tending of resilient ecosystems. There will be limited camping available at TLC for some participants. Course leaders will attempt to find lodging for the other participants if other options are not available to them.
The cost of this course is donation-based. We suggest $300 for the entire course to cover course workbooks and other logistical costs. However, to best support the growth of a community of radical mycologists we offer this course under the banner of NOTAFLOF (No One’s Turned Away For Lack Of Funds) while still asking that you GAYAABAGS (Give As You Are Able But Always Give Something). This course is a fundraiser for Radical Mycology. Any money left over at the end of the course will be used to support Radical Mycology directly as a volunteer-run project.
As this event can only accommodate a small number of people, we are asking all those that feel called to this course to fill out an application form. From these applications we will choose a range of participants who will represent as demographically and geographically diverse of a group as possible. One’s ability to cover the suggested donation is not a determining factor in our decision making process. We welcome people of all backgrounds and experience levels to apply.
Register for Recomposing Life by clicking here.
Registration for this course closes on June 12th.
This video is from a great profile on my good friends Maya and Peter of the Rad Myco crew via Grist.
This video from Peter of the Radical Mycology Project describes a method for training mushrooms to digest cigarette filters, now that’s pretty darn cool!
By the way there are only 24hrs left to support
Check out the great perks for a truly inspiring project.
New UPDATE: Peter McCoy will be speaking at the Permaculture Voices Conference alongside Paul Stamets!
Mycology (the study of the fungal kingdom) is a important piece of both ecology and holistic permaculture design. I’m excited to present a interview with the Co-founder of the Radical Mycology project, Peter McCoy. Peter played a critical role in creating the fantastic Radical Mycology Zine and is currently working on a crowdfunding campaign (still running) for a comprehensive radical mycology book!
Link to interview:
Ah, the beautiful wilds of western Canada. Rivers, mountains, forests… and out-of-control oil leaks that have already spurted thousands of barrels of toxic bitumen into the environment.
This more than even the hard work of activist may end the Keystone XL Pipeline:
From Sara Reardon of The New Scientist:
The leaks were caused by an underground blowout at a tar sand project in north-east Alberta run by Canadian Natural Resources that had been certified safe by government regulators. One of the firm’s scientists has been reported saying that they are mystified as to what went wrong or how to stop the leak. The company hasn’t disclosed how fast the leaks are progressing.
Since May, there have been leaks through surface fissures at four of the firm’s sites in the area, killing wildlife and raising questions about how well the safety of tar sands operations can be assessed. The company extracts bitumen by injecting steam into the tar sands at high pressure to melt the bitumen and push it to the surface.
Chris Severson-Baker of the Pembina Institute in Edmonton, Alberta, estimates that the method, known as cyclic steam stimulation, accounts for about 30 per cent of tar sands extraction. There’s nothing inherently risky about cyclic steam stimulation, he says, making these leaks all the more worrisome. “If there are cases like this, it shows things are not as predictable as we might like,” says Severson-Baker.
In January, Canada’s Energy Resources Conservation Board revealed that some 5700 barrels of bitumen had leaked from well sites run by Canadian Natural Resources four years ago. But investigations by the company and regulator couldn’t determine what had gone wrong. They suggested that the geology of the area was weaker than they had thought and couldn’t contain the pressure from the steam.
The spill could fuel opposition to the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil from this and similar sites. Opponents worry that the pipeline itself has a high risk of leaking, and that increased extraction will exacerbate carbon emissions. US president Barack Obama has said that he will only give the project the green light if it doesn’t add to carbon emissions, and on Saturday he questioned the economic benefits of the pipeline.