My name is Connor Stedman. I’m a permaculture teacher and designer, based mostly in the Northeast USA but exploring throughout the continent from time to time. I also mentor people (mostly adults, sometimes kids) in wilderness skills and knowledge of place. I have other passions around communication, leadership, and healing. I’m involved in a variety of organizations and initiatives, some of which you can read about here.
Some things I want to write about at Renewing the Commons are:
–The intersections of restoration ecology, habitat management, permaculture, and traditional land use. In other words, how to holistically rebuild the land’s capacity to serve as a commons resource.
–Exciting developments in these areas from around North America. This may include sexy megafauna, which I am a total sucker for, and also other heritage species & crops, plant communities, etc.
–Cultural and economic patterns that are replicable and/or scalable, with the potential to help spread regenerative land use practices around the planet.
Some of my assumptions and starting points:
I associate myself in general with the work of Kat Anderson and Tending the Wild. I want to pick up in some of the places where TTW leaves off and explore practical strategies for creating landscapes that function as ethnobotanical preserves.
I also associate myself with the ecological design principles and processes laid out by my mentor Dave Jacke in Edible Forest Gardens. I want to zoom out from the micro of forest garden design to the macro of rebuilding diversity and abundance at landscape and ecosystem scales. (Dave is co-writing a new book on coppice agroforestry in North America; please support this project on Kickstarter if you can!)
As a wildcrafter, I think human harvesting and use of wild plants (and animals) can be ecologically restorative. I think “leave nature alone,” as a general or primary land use strategy, has some consequences that I’m uncomfortable with. In future writing I’ll try to explain why I think this is. In the mean time, I agree with just about everything Samuel Thayer says about this – if you’re into this topic, you should purchase and read his books.
I have plenty of other assumptions and biases that I’ll try to air out as I go.
Lastly, as a reader I welcome your input, questions, requests for me to write about a certain topic, feedback, really cool/exciting stories or links, and so forth. Please be civil and respectful if you do write. Thanks in advance for your participation!