Permaculture in Action

Thursday, August 15, 2013

A Day Off

Last week we took a day off. We haven't had a day to ourselves since we came back from our little break a month ago. Every day since coming home has been busy with farm chores , workshops or parties.

We have been giving workshops to three of our neighbouring councils for a couple of years now. Newcastle council has asked us to conduct composting workshops to encourage residents to compost their waste rather than send it to landfill. They have now added worm farming and keeping chickens. Lake Macquarie council employed us to run a series of workshops covering many aspects of backyard food production including propagation, composting, pest control and garden design. Port Stephens had us do a short introduction to permaculture and just recently a composting workshop held at a community garden.

Very progressive councils who can see the benefit of these types of workshops in reducing costs and managing waste. No requests for our services from our very own council as yet!

These workshops are always filled. This last month we have run three workshops for these councils. We ran a workshop here on the farm for the Hunter Organic Growers on wicking beds and composting.

A composting workshop here on the farm

 Mark went away for 3 days for a Biodynamic conference.
We have run a propagation workshop here at the farm followed by a worm farming workshop in the afternoon. And this weekend just gone was an Introduction to Permaculture.

Here the group is implementing there food forest plan

We have had 6 Birthday parties here within five weeks.

Every Tuesday we have interns on the farm. We start with breakfast and work on together stopping for a quick lunch.

Mark has been keeping a friend's lawn mowing business going while he was on holiday. This has added to Mark's already heavy workload.

This weekend we have a farm tour open to the public on Saturday morning and  a tour by Central Coast Permaculture in the afternoon. On Sunday we have opened up the farm for Fair Food Week to discuss the people's food plan and share a peasant's lunch. Next week we are giving a talk to Permaculture Central Coast on Simple living in all it's complexities!

This time last year I had decided to slow down a bit but we have actually taken on more. For those who have become a little despondent about the state of the world, I would say that things are changing, if the number of requests we are receiving to run workshops, requests for parties and the increasing  waiting list we have for our CSA (community Supported Agriculture) is anything to go by.

So what did I do on my day off?  I spent some time in the house garden tidying up for some spring plantings and cleaned out this caravan.

 There was a lot of clutter in there. We had been using it for storage but now I have another use for it. But more about that later. 


  1. You have been busy! We were at the HOGS composting workshop where composting finally made sense to me. We gathered all sorts of goodies from around our little farm and built a compost heap that I'm sure Mark would approve of :) It is doing exactly what it should be -a crowbar pushed into it and left for a while was just about too hot to touch.Thanks for sharing your gardening knowledge :)

  2. You are such an inspiration Kate!
    This is encouraging news, especially when I read about some places overseas like in America in some states it is illegal to have chickens, water tanks, a clothes line and the neighbours can complain if they don't like your style of garden if it is visible to them!!
    We truly do live in the lucky country :)

  3. That's busy however those requests and the waiting list are encouraging.

    Just sent you an email, catch up soon! x

  4. Wow, you have been busy Kate! I was wondering why our council hasn't gotten on board as yet. Do you think we should send them this blog post of yours??? I'm not really happy with our council. I think there is so much they can do in this area.

  5. That does not sound like a day off! But for you I know it is... I love your strength and will.

    Sarah. Xxx