BEES AND CHICKENS AND FROGS'N TOADS'N LACTIC ACID BACTERIA

A self-sustaining farm has many little helpers; starting with beneficial bacteria which preserve cabbage and other vegetables in 'Kim Chee', ferment tea to 'Kombucha', make sourdough starter and even enrich the corn for the chickens with protein.

Tiny trichogramma wasps parasitize whitefly eggs, and aphid wasps eliminate aphids.Hoverflie larvae, lacewings and ladybugs dine on a host of pests. If the greenhouse is large enough, or there are several, it is usually possible to maintain a population of these and other predatory insects so that pesticides -chemical or biological - are not needed.

Manure- and earthworms take care of a lot of 'waste' material and turn it into a prime soil amendment

Bees provide honey, wax, propolis and pollen while pollinating the orchard, and even dead they are still a source of protein for the chickens.   

Frogs and toads control larger flying and hopping insects, while small gambusio fish eat mosquito larvae.

And Chickens eat everything and everybody, while producing eggs and meat but also [in a detour through a methane digester] biogas and prime liquid fertilizer, which can be used to grow duckweed algae as a protein-rich feed for the self-same chickens.

The overriding goal is to get away from the notion of 'waste' - everything natural is food for somebody or something, and therefore a resource.

A famous permaculture teacher once told a farmer who complained about slugs: "You do not have a slug problem, you have a duck deficiency!"