Alexander Tinti

What is permaculture?

The word ‘permaculture’ was coined in the 1970s by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren as a hybrid from ‘permanent’ and ‘agriculture’. ‘Permanence’ here refers to sustainability, to the cyclic nature of agriculture rather than the dependence on finite resources. They soon realized though that this permanence was not achievable when dealing with it in isolation….

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Alexander Tinti

Transformation of the Refugio: from wasteland to wildlife sanctuary

In 2016, I came to Costa Rica in search of a land destroyed by the methods of human activity. The goal was to restore it and turn it into as many habitats for animals as possible while producing enough food for ourselves to become largely self-sufficient. I found this land in the South-West of the…

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Alexander Tinti

All-natural phosphorus fertilizer: the Mexican sunflower

Every living cell needs large amounts of phosphorus to flourish – from phosphate-backbones in their DNA to ATP in their energy production system and many other things. But contrary to the equally essential elements nitrogen and carbon that exist abundantly in the air, phosphorus is added to the soil just by weathering (dissolving of minerals…

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Alexander Tinti

Feng Shui, Wilhelm Reich, and adaptive reuse: the architecture at the Refugio

Despite studying natural sciences in Vienna, my professional life did not begin in the field of nature conservation, but in stage design and in fine arts. Decades later, the subtleties of aesthetics and design I learned and then practiced all these years came in handy when I started to design and construct the buildings at…

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Alexander Tinti

My odyssey from art and science to nature conservancy

Ever since my childhood, like many other people, I have been driven by the questions of who I am and why things are as they are. To answer these questions, for me, any tool would do: natural sciences, fine arts, music, philosophy – or preferably all of them. So I started out with studying physics,…

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