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TitleHealing Appalachia: Sustainable Living through Appropriate Technology
File Size4.0 MB
Total Pages452
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
	The Global Situation
	Challenges Ahead
	Criteria for Selecting Appropriate Technologies
	Structure of This Book
1. Solar Photovoltaics
	Domestic Electricity
	Energy Conservation through Lighting
	PV Appliances
	Net Metering
2. Microhydropower
	Microhydropower Potential
	System Descriptions
	Civil Works
	Advantages and Concerns
3. Wind Power
	U.S. Wind Power
	Appalachia and Wind Power
	Residential Wind Power Decisions
4. Wood Heating
	Types of Wood Heaters
	Government Efficiency Standards
	Fuel and Heater Use and Maintenance
	Limitations of Wood
5. Solar Heating Applications
	Solar Water Heating
	Solar Cookers and Ovens
	"Solar" Clothes Drying
6. Shade Trees and Windbreaks
	Shade Trees
	Wind Barriers
	Multipurpose Landscaping
7. Food Preservation
	Root Cellars
	Canning, Pickling, and Smoking
	Solar Food Drying
	Freezing the Surplus
	Protecting with Mulch and Temporary Cold Frames
8. Edible Landscaping
	Landscape as Decoration
	Edible Landscape Options
	Domestic Wildscape
	Green Lawn Mowing
9. Intensive and Organic Gardening and Orcharding
	Intensive Gardening and Orcharding
	Organic Produce
10. Regional Heritage Plants
	American Chestnuts
	Heirloom Apples
	Heritage Herbs
	Seed-Saving Techniques
11. Solar Greenhouses and Season Extenders
	Siting and Placement
	Proper Maintenance
	Produce Choice
12. Wildlife Habitat Restoration
	Sharing a Limited Habitat
	Minimizing Habitat Disturbances
	Creating Habitats
13. Nontimber Forest Products
	Native Foods
	Handcraft and Home Products
	Seeds and Plants
	Chips and Other Nontimber Tree Products
	A Nontimber Forest Product Ethic
	A Pledge to Sustain Forest Ecosystems
14. Silvicultural Practices
	Tree Selection for Planting and Harvesting
	Replacement Planting
	Thinning and Management
15. Wildcrafting
	Wildcrafting for Food
	Ginseng and Other Medicinals
	Ornamental and Other Uses of Wild Plants
16. Constructed or Artificial Wetlands
	Highlights of Construction
	Wetland Plants
17. Land Reclamation with Native Species
	Exotic Species
	Past and Current Reclamation Practices
	Future Reclamation
18. Retreat Cabin Sites
	Appalachia: An Ideal Retreat
	Selection of Place
	Construction Suggestions
	Using Sacred Space
19. Energy-Efficient Passive Solar Design
	Solar Siting
	Solar Construction
	Solar Glazing
	Thermal Mass: Heat Retention Systems
	Insulation and Energy Conservation
20. Natural Cooling
	Cooling by Blocking the Sun
	Reducing Heat Sources
	Heat Pumps and Geothermal Energy
21. Native Building Materials
	Earth Materials
	Pressed Earth
22. Cordwood Structures
	Advantages of Cordwood Buildings
	Spreading the Word
23. Yurts in Appalachia
	Advantages and Disadvantages
	Variety and Utility of Yurts
	Construction Tips
24. Simple Modes of Transportation
	General Travel Modes
	Guidelines for Appropriate Automobile Use
	The ASPI Solar Electric Car
25. Composting and Vermicomposting
	Advantages of Composting
	The Art of Composting
26. Composting Toilets
	How the Composting Toilet Works
	Types of Composters
	Road to Acceptance
27. Recycled, Salvaged, and Deconstructed Materials
	Recycling Materials
	Salvaged and Deconstructed Materials
	Domestic Source Reduction
28. Ponds and Aquaculture
	Rural Farm Ponds
	Planning for Ponds and Aquaculture
29. Cisterns and Water Catchments
	Cistern Siting and Size
	Construction Methods and Materials
	Cistern Maintenance
	Popularity of Cisterns
30. Irrigation and Water Conservation
	Simple Irrigation
	Drip Irrigation Systems
	Water Conservation
	Reflections on Water Use
Conclusion: An Appalachian Appropriate Technology
	Two Scenarios
	Appalachia with a New Vision
Postscript: Communications
	History of Communication
	Cell Phones
	Personal Computers and the Internet
Document Text Contents
Page 2

Healing Appalachia

Page 226

Land Reclamation with Native Species � 209

or lands where some incomplete reclamation has been done
because of federal and state regulations; and needing attention,
which includes abandoned or forsaken lands that have not been
covered under any regulations and continue to erode and
degrade. By reclamation, we mean curbing land degradation and
starting the natural healing process using native species as vege-
tative medicine.


The denuding of land in Appalachia started with the advent of
European settlement in this region. However, the destructive
nature of such a practice has only been recognized in the last
century, especially after the introduction of heavy earthmoving
and resource-extractive equipment. Generally, a cut-over forest
would include many saplings and understory growth that could
spring back rather rapidly following the departure of ax-wielding

Fig. 17.1. Initiating reclamation work in burnt-over forest in eastern
Kentucky in the late 1970s

Page 227

loggers and oxen. Disturbances became more pronounced in the
nineteenth and twentieth centuries as land developers used heav-
ier machinery and reached wider areas. It became evident that
this fragile steep-sloped land, subject to heavy rainfall, would
soon be plagued by floods and major soil erosion if some form
of vegetation were not quickly restored. Often the early develop-
ers looked beyond native plants for vegetative cover that could
proliferate rapidly and in the process return some nutrients to
the soil. Kudzu and autumn olives were among the species that
were planted. This practice had a major flaw: a lack of control
over the rampant spread of these exotic species. Just as the orig-
inal damage was done with disregard to ecological principles, the
early reclamation efforts, both for road cuts and for surface min-
ing, unfortunately were not always based on selecting native
species adapted to the Appalachian bioregion.

For example, the multiflora rose (Rosa multiflora), a native of
Asia that was brought to the United States originally in the 1800s
for use as rootstock for grafted ornamental roses, was promoted
from the 1930s until the 1950s by the U.S. Department of Agri-
culture as a “living fence” for windbreaks and erosion control.
Birds enjoy the rose hips and thus spread the plant to a wide
array of climatic and soil conditions. This seemingly harmless
rose is quite capable of choking out native plant life. Persistent
mowing can rid lands of the pest. Likewise the invasive tree of
heaven (Ailanthus altissima) is found now throughout central
Appalachia in sunny, disturbed areas and wastelands. Cutting and
adding salt to the base of this tree is needed to eradicate it. Japan-
ese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica) was propagated in America
for landscaping and erosion control. It is widely known for its fra-
grance and is as bothersome as its bushy cousin coral honeysuck-
le (Lonicera sempervirens).

Kudzu (Pueraria lobata) first arrived in the South from
Japan at the New Orleans Exposition in 1884; it was seen as an
exotic ornamental with sweet-smelling flowers and lush foliage.
At the turn of the twentieth century a southern agricultural
association promoted it as fodder for cattle. In 1927 a Georgia

210 � Healing Appalachia

Page 451

vegetable oil, waste, 24–25
ventilation, 233–34, 245–46,

vermicomposting, 308, 310,

315–18; advantages of, 317;
definition of, 315; drawbacks
of, 318

vermiculture, definition of, 315
Victory Gardens, 93, 101
Volunteers in Technical Assis-

tance (VITA), 74
von Frisch, Karl, 110

walnut, black (Juglans nigra),
105–6, 173, 190, 255

Warren, Carol, 48
Washington, Kentucky, 377,

waste management, 331–39; in

two scenarios, 385, 389
wastewater purification, principle

of, 198
water: catchments for, 350–60;

conservation of, 362, 366–69,
374, 378; irrigation with,
361–66, pasteurization of, 77;
quality of, 364, 385–86, 389

water pumps, solar photovoltaic,

weather stripping, 235
weed control, 120–21
wejack (Martes pennanti), reintro-

duction of, 158
Western Carolina University, 40
West Virginia Jesuit University,

wetlands, constructed or artifi-

cial, 196–206, 381; in

Appalachia, 200, 381; bene-
fits of, 197–98; construction
of, 201–3; plants for, 203–5;
regulations on, 199; siting of,

wildcrafting, 180–95, 377; for dec-
orations, 194–95; definition
of, 180; for food, 181–90; for
medicinals, 191–94

wildlife habitat, 148–59, 380; cre-
ation of, 155–58; minimizing
disturbances to, 152–55; rein-
troduction of species to, 151,
158–59; sharing of, 149–52

wild plants: for constructed wet-
lands, 203–5; in domestic
wildscapes, 107–9. See also

wildscapes, domestic, 107–9
Wilhelm, Gene, 108, 160
wind barriers, 81, 85–87
window(s): low-E, 232; coatings

for, 232, 243–44
window shades, 236–37, 244, 332
wind power, 48–58, 379; advan-

tages of, 49; competitive
position of, 8; concerns
about, 54–56; considerations
for landowners, 57–58; in
Denmark, 49, 50; generation
of hydrogen by, 50; in Ger-
many, 49; history of, 48–49,
53–54, 379; installed capacity
of, 49; potential of, 51–52

witch hazel, 160
wolf, red (Canis rufus), reintro-

duction of, 158
wood, as fuel, 66–67, 162

434 � Index

Page 452

wood, as fuel, 66–67, 162
wood, for construction: preserva-

tives for, 256–57; types of
254-55. See also cedar, eastern
red; locust, black ; walnut,

Woodcrafters’ Festival, 377
wood heating, 59–69; limitations

of, 68–69; maintenance of,
67–68; need of national strat-
egy for, 382; obtaining wood
for, 66–67; types of, 59–65.
See also woodstove(s)

Woodlands Mountain Institute,
West Virginia, 287-88

woodstove(s), 64; elbow torch,
62–63; government efficiency
standards for, 64, 65–66

wood wastes, reuse of, 334
woolly adelgids, 87
Works Progress Administration

(WPA), 258
World War II, 93, 101, 377

Yunker, Syl, 217

yurt(s), 286–95; advantages of,
288–90; construction tips,
293–95; drawbacks of,
291–92; erection of, 375; his-
tory of, 286–87; siting of,
293; various uses of, 295

Yurt Foundation, Maine, 293, 375

Zervos, Arthouros, 50

Index � 435

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