Permaculture in Action

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Around The Farm

2014 has been declared International Year of Family Farming and so to celebrate I would like to share snippets of our family farm. So once a week for the rest of the year you can join us here for a slow tour of the farm.
The 2014 International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) aims to raise the profile of family farming and smallholder farming by focusing world attention on its significant role in eradicating hunger and poverty, providing food security and nutrition, improving livelihoods, managing natural resources, protecting the environment, and achieving sustainable development, in particular in rural areas.

 * * * * * * *

Life has been very productive down on the farm (I try not to talk too much about how busy we are. I know that everyone is busy so they don't need to here it from me so I'll just use the term productive). For us, and many other farmers I know, have had to diversify as growing vegetables just doesn't pay the bills. Well not yet anyway! So we have channeled our skills into helping us make a living while still staying on the farm. We both have a background in education. Mark has experience in adult ed. and I have been involved in early childhood and special ed. These interests of ours have evolved into workshops on living sustainably , permaculture and Biodynamics. And my passion has always been for the littlies.

This past week has seen a combination of all of these. We have had a workshop on Preserving the Harvest where we made passata, fig jam, sauerkraut, and bottled pears., and semi dried tomatoes. That was Saturday , the official start to our year.

Sunday I helped my friend with her wedding quilt...

My friend's aunt joined us for the day, and we managed to get all pieces sewn together.Very soon I will have photos of a finished quilt.

Tuesday was the very first of our Mum's and Bubs tours. I was beginning to think that there wasn't going to be any takers for the tour, but within just a few days it had filled to overflowing. We had 16 mums and grandmums with 38 children between them. What a beautiful morning we had (even though it was very very hot). We fed all the animals, collected eggs and played and ran about.The adults enjoyed catching up with friends and meeting new ones. Here they meet one of the hens...

Two families that visited were homeschoolers and they made a day of it. After having a picnic lunch they spent some time drawing , inspired by the animals they met that day. Nutmeg and Cinnamon were very popular.

And later on during the week Sir Bowie Charles had a pedicure...

His little hooves are trimmed every six weeks or so by a lovey friend who runs a business called Barefoot Trimming. She is one of a number of people who have dispensed with shoeing horses and advocates horses going barefoot. All of her horses are now barefoot. She has done a wonderful job on Bowie, whose feet were in a bad way.  He is a favourite on the farm tours and parties!


  1. What a wonderful idea to have workshops and tours, wishing you every success with those. The wedding quilt is looking very pretty.

  2. I really liked how you explained how farmers have to diversify. I often think it was amazing that if we go back 70 years ago, a dairy farm would look after a large family ...and now quite often farmers must diversify to survive. Your mums and bubs tour sounds just lovely , I hope your wonderful connections with community continue to grow.

  3. Hi Kate, Your diversification is benefitting others. What a lovely way for people to learn about sustainability, gardening, farming etc.! Hope you get some time to relax sometime soon. : -)