All posts by juan petry

how to measure sustainability

According to an actual diskussion in our forum we like to share some facts about our first art camp in early summer 2018 in the campus of our free university of informal education (UNIIE).

As already published  – count down … – we created an infrastructure of shower and sinks and a catering place in the color garden. We did this to expand our possibilities to host groups of people at the same time and to develop our educative projects like UNIEE (free university of informal education).

We used trash and waste to set up the structures like refurbished wood from paletts, sinks from trash and ibc tanks from industry.

In three weeks we established the camp and finished it just before we hosted the first group of students from a german high school.

It was used for 6 days by 40 kids and adults, sometimes more when we invited for special dinner (paella done by Clara!!).

Luke, a friend from australia, mentioned, that we used a lot of energy and material in infrastructure instead of using minimalistic solutions. he posted some samples in the forum.

We do not measure the distance between theoretical optimum and our reality, we measure the distance between our reality and the daily reality of our guests. We think, whatever we want to change in the relation between generations and their ressources and their biological food prints, we have to start in their realities.

A normal person use 122 liter water per day. In one TEDx – Talk we can listen that 50% of the sweet water in France is used for cooling nuclear power devices. Wether this is true or not, we are sure taht these 122 liter are not used in a close personal way.

In our first art camp all kids where sensibilized and stimulated to reduce the water usage as much as possible. Thanks to their teachers! Instead of theoretical 122 liter per day they used less than 10.

From our perspective this is a great result. Hopefully we will invite much more young people to further art camps and – as an aditional feature of beeing guest in our project – they reduce their biological food prints in a fundamental way.

Signpost mounted – another work of art

German home unit 1276 km far from the color garden, the first three arrows

We finished the first arrows of the signpost in the sculpture garden and mounted them. As a remark from Mihaela from Lugoj, that are exactly the colors of the romanian flag. So welcome Mihaela :).

Clara from La Senieta and the complete signpost

In the next days we will complete the installation with arrows to Martha´s home, the german home unit of Familiafeliz group EL-DRAC. If you want to be part of the project check this page and mount your own signpost.

step four – entrance to the sculpture garden

finishing the entrance to the sculpture garden – step four

We finished the step number four to the entrance of the sculpture garden. Also we arranged a little the frame of stones around the entrance.


an new guide on the left side of the entrance

On the left side we started a new guide. On the left side without head, on the right side with a head.


the finish

The step number four is also to protect the soil on the upper terrace.


protecting the soil from the upper terrace

Left photo from the upper terrace, right photo from the lower terrace.

Second signpost in La Senieta Benicarlo Spain

new signpost in the garden of Clara – LA SENIETA – Benicarlo – Spain

We mounted a second signpost in the garden of LA SENIETA – the bio garden refugium of Clara. The signpost will host some links to the familiafeliz destinations and Clara will add some new locations of friends working in the field of permaculture, bio gardening, medicinal plants and social cultural projects like the color garden or the artist residence CASAdelDRAGON.

Do you want to mount your own signpost? Here is the form to calculate distance and direction.

Creating a new bed with tree

new little bed

In winter 2016 we created another bed. Again it was hard work to move stones and organic waste to the place.

cleaned and finished for the tree

Also we created a small way to pass the bed.

the wild tree in the center

We planted a wild tree (Acacia trachyphloia) in the center. This tree is able to store nitrogen in the soil and make it accessible for other plans.


end of the day

The tree was protected against strong wind and we started with a lot of water…

Third step

step number three in the sculpture garden

We did a third step in the sculpture garden. So we are on the way to finish the first stair to a upper level of the garden. Left side with cladding, right side after the finish.


step number three at the end of the day

And we will continue with number four…

first bed on the left side of the garden leaf

David with a first weelbarrow full of self made compost – thanks to Katrin (!)

Mounting a new bed in the garden is ever a challenge and moving a lot of stones is one of the first activities. The design of the garden is a leaf. So according to that we defined another three areas on the top of the left side of this leaf and started with the first.


Katrins quality compost is working…

A premier accoured by using first time self made compost to rise the quality of the bed.

International workers


One miricle of the color garden in Cervera del Maestre is its opportinity to meet people from different countries. Clara from Valencia / Spain was working together with Luke from Australia.


Tanacetum vulgare L., Syn.: Chrysanthemum vulgare (L.) Bernh.) – left photo – scribbles of the beds in the color garden right photo

The plant tanaceto – tansy – on the left photo was a donation from clara to the color garden. Some traditional dyers use tansy to produce a golden-yellow color. The flower heads of the tansy produce a dark yellow hue together with the mordant alum. For the mordant, 12 to 20 g of alum are taken per 100 g of wool. Dark green is the coloring with an alum pre-stain, iron sulfate after-stain and ammonia developing bath. One needs about 400 g of fresh flowers for 100 g of wool.


plant determination


One of the best friends of the home unit in spain is Clara. She has a lot of knowledge in plant determination and gardening.


llanten – plantago media

Cooked seeds serve as emollients and laxatives. Contains mucilages and silicic acid that is used as a pectoral remedy. It is a diuretic, expectorant, emollient and cicatrizant. It is used in syrup or extract to combat colds, bronchitis and asthma. External way in the form of compresses to treat burns and ulcers. In gargle relieves angina. In eye drops is used for conjunctivitis and inflammation of the eyelids.


borraja – borago officinalis

The dye contained in the flowers acts as an indicator. Like litmus, it turns red when it comes into acid solutions. In older flowers slight red coloration is also observed.

The leaves of the Borretin are eaten in salads or cooked in soups. The blue flowers are edible (they contain significantly less alkaloids than the leaves), have a sweetish taste and are often used as a salad decoration.

Borretin flowers (boraginis flos) contain bornesite, allantoin, mucus, potassium salts (up to 17%). In the pediatrics, the drug is used for urinary retention, fever, mucus of the respiratory tracts, diarrhea, inflammation, rheumatism, climacteric symptoms, and blood purification.


guindilla-de-campana – Capsicum baccatum var. pendulum cv. campanilla

Chili peppers have been a part of the human diet in the Americas since at least 7500 BCE. The most recent research shows that chili peppers were domesticated more than 6000 years ago in Mexico.

When consumed, capsaicinoids bind with pain receptors in the mouth and throat that are responsible for sensing heat. Once activated by the capsaicinoids, these receptors send a message to the brain that the person has consumed something hot. The brain responds to the burning sensation by raising the heart rate, increasing perspiration and release of endorphins.

They are very high in potassium, magnesium, and iron. Their very high vitamin C content can also substantially increase the uptake of non-heme iron from other ingredients in a meal, such as beans and grains. A very large study published by the British Medical Journal found some indications that humans who consume spicy foods, especially fresh chili peppers, were less likely to die of cancer or diabetes.


acelga – beta vulgaris subsp. vulgaris

Fresh young chard can be used raw in salads. Mature chard leaves and stalks are typically cooked (like in pizzoccheri) or sauteed; the bitterness fades with cooking, leaving a refined flavor which is more delicate than that of cooked spinach.

Chard having significant content in raw form of vitamin E and the dietary minerals, magnesium, manganese, iron and potassium.

Second step

Moving material to the working area – approx. 500 kg for 4 steps

We created the second step to the entrance of the sculpture garden. First we prepared the cladding, then we supported it with a ring of heavy stones. Inside we places some nice natural stones and mortar.


mortar left – cladding right – stones in the box to support the cladding

The rest of the step we filled with little stones and concrete.


process of unmounting the cladding and doing the finish

After waiting 4 hours we unmounted the cladding and we did the finish of the natural stone wall.


final view after another day of working for the first four steps to the sculpture garden

Next job will be step three…