I am almost halfway with the course The Advanced Permaculture Student. That is what it is called anyway. If I am supposed to understand everything I learned and, what is more, be able to implement this knowledge into daily practice only God knows where I am. But I am doing my best and I can tell you in all honesty that it is very, very interesting and… fun!
The course consists of Matt Powers’ fabulous book and a whole series of videos of the most knowedgable people in their respective fields. And of course literature Matt refers to and more, a lot more.
Most of the videos are hardly edited and to me that makes them so attractive. It makes the message more genuine. Some are about permaculture in general, others are very specific as for instance Michael Phillips when he talks about how to fight (and/or avoid) pests in your fruit orchard. He gives a wonderful insight on how to approach this problem holistically rather than allopatically (i.e. support the defense mechanism instead of fighting the symptoms). It is about spraying with compost teas, kelp extract or fish oil among many other things.
And Michael gives us this wonderful example of the advantages of natural grown fruit. At his farm in New Hampshire he sells apples from his orchard and he speaks in this video about spots on an apple:
So, if I understand this correctly, in order for an apple to get its best taste and nutritional value, it needs an attack whilst developing. Only under these circumstances all the minerals will be used to form the enzymes to get complete proteins and sugars.
So beware of the perfect apple, it has not been in a battle because it was "protected" by insecticides, fungicides and herbicides. You don't want to hang out with sissies.