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The Umbrella: Summer 2015

Umbrella2colTHE UMBRELLA:
A catch-all of news,
media, and events from
Brad Lancaster

Summer 2015


Click the linked header ABOVE to find more details about some of Brad’s mid/late-2015 events, including:

  • TUCSON, AZ (May 20 & 21): Brad will give a presentation on local implementation of green-infrastructure programs at BECC/COCEF’s Border Green Infrastructure Forum II. FREE! Attend in person or via live webinar, transmitted in English or Spanish.
  • TUSCON, AZ (May 21): Special evening screening of the film “Inhabit: A Permaculture Perspective,” with a discussion following the film with lead teachers of the Sonoran Permaculture Guild (Dan Dorsey, Brad Lancaster, Barbara Rose, and Leona Davis; and Justin Bramhall of Ahimsa Landscaping). Currently sold out—follow the event to see if more tickets will be made available.
  • DENVER, CO (May 28): Evening public talk by Brad, Regenerative Watersheds: From Plumbing to Policy, followed by a panel with Brad and local policymakers & water activists. Tickets on sale now. Hosted by Denver Permaculture Guild & co-sponsored by Woodbine Ecology Center.
  • SEDALIA, CO (May 29–June 7): Integrated Social & Ecological Design course, taught by Pandora Thomas, Brad, and Eric Toensmeier, with local guest speakers, at Woodbine Ecology Center. Registration ongoing.
  • SACRAMENTO, CA (October 23–25): Save the date! Water-harvesting and integrated-design events with Brad, featuring collaboration with local specialists. Details to come.
  • CALGARY, AB, CANADA (November 19–20): Brad will be one of many speakers at Landscape Alberta’s Green Industry Show & Conference. Stay tuned for more…

These are in addition to some potential events-in-progress: a water-harvesting course in Amarillo (TX), a field workshop in Africa, and a conference in Arkansas. Click here if you’d like to inquire about hiring Brad for your public or private event.


G plant 2 IMG_2738 rwm
A spot in need of guerrilla planting

Guerrilla-Planting Rain and Native Food Trees
Do you know a spot in your community that could be more than just a spot? A spot where, perhaps, a native, food-bearing, harvested-rainwater-irrigated tree would make all the difference—by bringing shade, native-bird and -insect habitat, beauty, food, soil moisture, and fertility where there was none before? Whether flying solo is your style or you’d love to make it a social thing with a friend or two, whether you don your superhero cape or go undercover in plain clothes, maybe a little guerrilla-planting is in order! Read Brad’s latest blog post featuring the short tale of how his, Sky’s, and Julie’s efforts came together recently to do just that….

Sun- & Shade-Trap Videos
There’s a rhyme and a reason to the seasonal path of the sun and the subsequent patterns of shade. How can you use this knowledge to harvest these intangible yet important resources to collect free sun & warmth where you need it, and bask in free shade & coolth (yes, that’s a word!) where that would be just the thing? This blog post lines up videos, images, and links for you to illustrate and describe the whats and hows you’ll need to get started harvesting sun & shade where you live!


Brent Cluff, Brad, Cunningham aide Katie Bolger, and other Tucson water-harvesting activists and advocates are featured in this High Country News article, Tucson’s rain-catching revolution, which appeared in the April 27, 2015, issue, written by Tony Davis. Full article available online to HCN web or print subscribers.

Gretchen Lück of local Tucson community radio station KXCI’s Weekly Green interviewed Brad over the winter on topics including Desert Harvesters, planting trees in Tucson (Part 1 & Part 2), and How Far Water Harvesting in Tucson Has Come over the past decade. (Note that the sun-path info Brad provides is for a Tucson-specific audience, so the winter-solstice shadow ratio will be different for other latitudes. Also, if you’re in the southern hemisphere, note that Brad means “equator-facing” when he says “south” in terms of tree placement and other solar-design elements.)

Scott Mann spoke with Brad for Episode 1502 of Scott’s Permaculture Podcast, released on January 14, 2015. Scott and Brad discuss water harvesting with living systems, fog harvesting, plant selection, as well as responding to several listener questions.

… & MORE

Eric-Hoffer-Finalist-SealBrad’s still-new second edition of Volume 1 of Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond was recently named a 2014 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist. Congratulations, Brad! For more about the award and the other books similarly recognized, click here. To see the other six awards this book has garnered, click here. And to order your own copy, or one for your mom, click here!

In April, Pima Association of Governments recognized Brad and other area individuals, institutions, and municipal projects for their leadership in low-impact development (LID). Brad’s urban homestead and the LID strategies he’s effected in his neighborhood, Dunbar/Spring, are what inspired PAG’s praise of him—click the following link and scroll down to the LID Case Studies Inventory Map to take a virtual tour (geo-referenced when opened on a mobile device with app) of Brad’s property and other Rainwater Harvesting Sites Recognized for Excellence in LID.