Category Archives: permaculture

Kaitiaki Farm Tour – 10th September

Kaitiaki Farm is among the most diverse permaculture farms in New Zealand. Our holistic approach to land management includes all of the 13 acres – taking advantage of micro-climates, soil types, and hydrology.

The farm is opened twice a year to the public: September and March.

“Wow, totally inspiring.” – Tour Participant

As part of the 5th Annual Whanganui Permaculture Weekend we are offering a walking farm tour on Sunday 10th September from 9:30-12:30. The tour will cover: organic market gardening; the best tools for farm and garden management; tractoring fowl; water management; building soil fertility; wind breaks; orchard planning; erosion control; slope stabilisation; stock rotation; wetland restoration; and, eco-building.

223 No. 2 Line. Please park on the road. $25 per person.

Stay-and-Learn B&B packages available for out-of-town guests.

theecoschool at gmail.com

5th Annual Permaculture Weekend

Whanganui Permaculture Weekend is a grass roots, dirt-under-your-fingernails, no nonsense event for anyone serious about realistic solutions for a troubled world. This is one place that Whanganui punches above it’s weight – with some of the best permaculturists and educators in the nation.

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The 5th annual event features at least four workshops by Whanganui locals who are the top of their field in New Zealand. Yet despite this expertise all the programmes are offered at affordable rates – most likely the best value weekend of learning anywhere in the country.

And we’re doing our best to make the event child-friendly this year, with a number of great workshops focused on children, including Rope Making and Rourou Making, Outdoor Classrooms, and an up-close-with-farm-animals BBQ on Saturday night.

See schedule below.

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Saturday, 9th Sept.

9-12 Tools for a Resilient Household: broad forks, solar ovens, rocket stoves, stirrup hoes, permaculture books, permaculture calendars. REBS Stall, River Market, Taupo Quay

9:30-11:00 Tour of wetland restoration and hillsides post slips. Mount St. Joseph. 14 Hillside Terrace. Noelene Landrigan

11-1 Rope Making and Rourou Making, Tracey Young, River Market near i-site. Donation

11:30 – 12:30 UCOL courses: Bee Keeping and Organic Gardening. Richard Pedley, Jake Schultz. UCOL Complex main entrance, Taupo Quay. Free

1:30-3:30 Suburban Permaculture Property Tour. 106 Matai St. Phil Holden. By Donation.

2-3 Backyard Chickens. Kaitiaki Farm, 223 No. 2 Line. Cyd Welsh & Nelson Lebo $10

3-4 DIY Chicken Tractors Kits. Flat packs for sale – $70

4-5 pm Hot Composting for Serious Gardeners. Kaitiaki Farm, 223 No. 2 Line. Nelson Lebo. Free

5:30-7:00 pm Shared Meal BBQ. Kaitiaki Farm, 223 No. 2 Line.

 

Overnight accommodation available. (See Below.)

 

Sunday, 10th Sept.

9:30 – 12:30 Kaitiaki Farm Tour. 223 No. 2 Line. Nelson Lebo. $25

1-4 Fruit Tree and Vine Care. 126 Springvale Road. Murray Jones. $20

1:30-3:30 Outdoor Classrooms for Children. Kaitiaki Farm, 223 No. 2 Line. Dani Lebo. By Donation

2-4 Seed Swap. Whanganui Seed Savers. Quaker Meeting House, Wicksteed St. By Donation

3:30 – 5:00 Tree Planting. Kaitiaki Farm, 223 No. 2 Line. Free

 

B&B Packages include accommodation, dinner on Saturday, breakfast on Sunday and admission to all workshops.

Studio: Couple/family with en suite. $190.

Private room/shared bathroom: $170/couple or $95 per person.

Valley Shelter Sleepout: $85 (Single)

Camping: $75 per person.

Three Years on the Land

After three years of good design and hard work, we have transformed a worn out horse property into one of New Zealand’s premier permaculture farms. Significantly, we have done this on a tiny budget and with no heavy equipment or contractors. A massive thanks goes out to our fantastic interns who have come from over a dozen countries to help with the ‘human-scale’ transformation of the land.

Kaitiaki Farm has a bit of everything permaculture: organic market gardens; perennial orchards; swales and ponds; tractored poultry; alternative energy; integrated food systems; wetland restoration; riparian corridors; innovative construction techniques; creative reuse; and community involvement.

Our education programmes are world-leading, most notably the eight-week PDC Work-Study Internship, which is fully enrolled until the middle of 2018. We believe that the highest quality education should be affordable for anyone, not just those who can afford to go to expensive weekend workshops.

We have been privileged and humbled to be educating the next generation of permaculturists who will change the world for the better. Our dedication to people and the planet will continue to guide the development of Kaitiaki Farm and the innovative programmes offered here.

Thanks to all our supporters over the years and we look forward to even greater success in the future!

Peace, Estwing

Permaculture Update: Avocado, Pork, Honey and Olive Block

We’ve reached a major milestone in the development of our perennial food systems on Kaitiaki Farm. The fencing is in and we’ve just built our kune kune pigs a shelter in the top corner of our valley horticulture block. (Note the hives in the background.)

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The pigs were very happy to see the new growth as the days get slightly longer.

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The windy hillside has already been planted with olive trees. The higher slopes and stream have been planted with native trees, including many manuka for honey production.

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We have over-wintered the avocado trees to protect them from frost, so they are still in their tubs. They will be planted further down the valley in the spring.

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These tagasaste (tree lucerne) will act as nurse trees for the avocados next winter and beyond. By then these little seedlings will be over 1.5 metres tall.

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Within a few years this view will be transformed into a textbook perennial polyculture food production system. Can’t wait.

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A huge thanks to our friend and probably NZ’s best permaculture horticulturist, Rob Bartrum. Chu, bro.

 

Peace, Estwing

Permaculture Farm PDC Internship Intensive

Our interns booked in for the August/September internship programme have had last minute conflicts arise. We are in the position to offer a six week intensive (normally eight weeks) programme for the right person(s).

We believe in learning by doing. 

We believe in making education affordable.

Interns earn a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) through an experience of living permaculture on the land. During the August/September programme we will focus on animal care, planting trees, solar cooking, rocket stoves, eco-renovation, orchard management and market gardening.

There is a special emphasis on community education during this particular programme, which culminates with Adult Learners Eco-Literacy Week and the Whanganui Permaculture Weekend.

Dates: 30th July – 10th September.

Cost: $350

More details: http://www.theecoschool.net/workstudy-permaculture-design-certificate.html

Contact: theecoschool at gmail dot com

 

Peace, Estwing

Early Winter Permaculture Update

We have had a busy autumn here on the farm with our three amazing interns. They left us last weekend after presenting their fabulous design projects.

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After 10 weeks on the farm they have learned a ton about permaculture design.

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Now, for the first time in eight months we do not have interns on the farm. It is a welcome break from continuously having to manage a group of eager helpers. We’ve shifted gears to a slower life with easy chores like drying apples. We had a very large harvest of Monty’s Surprise apples this year and are processing many of them through the solar dehydrator.

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I made this a few months ago out of salvaged timber and an old shower door.

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Before the interns left we made a good push to plant out our strawberries…

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… but we had so many that I’ve had to pot a few dozen up this weekend. Too many strawberries? That’s my kind of problem!

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We also made a good effort of planting garlic, but the process is not quite halfway done so far. I enjoy planting garlic and can take the next fortnight to chip away are the remainder of the 4,000 + cloves that we’re planting.

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Other early winter things happening on the farm: ducklings?!?

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We have cockerels to process once there is enough space in the freezer.

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And the first lot of poplar poles was delivered by the regional council. But those can wait until the August internship begins.

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Peace, Estwing