Use Edges & Value the Marginal

The vast majority of all terrestrial life makes its home in the edge between rock and sky: the living soil. The edge between land and ocean contains reefs and all the plethora of life they contain. Rivers meander to provide more edges and provide greater nourishment to the land. Cells divide so that their volume does not exceed their surface area, allowing them to shuttle nutrients and waste across their membrane- an edge. All exchanges happen at edges, and exchanges lead to an increase in value. In permaculture we utilize edges as a resource and design with curves to maximize edge.

Marginal spaces, like the green strips on the sides of roads and random green patches on city streets, are all spaces that can be utilized for great value but are often ignored. Many groups of people who possess immense knowledge and wisdom have historically been marginalized, much to the detriment of society as a whole. By valuing the marginal, we regain access to the wealth of knowledge, resources, and space that has been rejected by mainstream society, and in the process build a stronger, more inclusive system.

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