Tag Archives: permaculture

6th Annual Whanganui Permaculture Weekend

6th Annual Whanganui Permaculture Weekend

8th-9th September, 2018

Whanganui’s permaculture community offers up another great weekend of sharing and learning with two major themes this year: RetroSuburbia and Making & Doing.

Saturday, 8th September

9:00 – 1:00 – River Traders Market

Local Currency: River Exchange and Barter System

Resilience Products: Broad Forks, Solar Ovens, Rocket Stoves, Hula Hoes, Permaculture Calendars, RetroSuburbia Books, Permaculture Plants, and More!

10:00 – 2:00 Natural Cheese Making – Bronwynne Dowson Anderson. $75

This teaches how to make cheese the natural way using raw milk, home grown cultures and not spending a fortune on equipment.

For each of these classes people will take home what we make. All ingredients provided and includes refreshments.

Register: kiwibokslady@gmail.com

10:00 – 11:00 Setting up a Home-Based Plant Nursery – Nelson Lebo. $10

Plant propagation can be fun and easy, and save you hundreds of dollars a year. See how we have set up our nursery for verge seedlings, fruit trees and natives. Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

11:00 – 12:30 How To Grow Strong Healthy Seedlings – Louise Knight. $10

In this workshop we will cover
– step by step from seed to planting out
– reasons why to grow your own
– helpful tools
– trouble shooting problems
– seed dormancy and ways to break it
– heirloom, hybrid and growing your own saved seed

Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: louise@ngileah.co.nz

11:00 – 1:00 RetroSuburbia: The Behavioural Field – Lydia Harris. Donation

Lydia Harris, TVNZ columnist, micro-entrepaneur, and author of Back to Basics, shares her knowledge and experience in the Behavioural Field with an amazing array of creative solutions on a tiny budget. Putiki.

Register: nourished2018@yahoo.com

2:00 – 5:00 RetroSuburbia: The Built and Biological Fields Case Study – Nelson Lebo.

$50 with $10 discount on the book for attendees.

This workshop covers the most cost effective approaches to home renovation and edible landscaping. Using the Eco Thrifty Retrofit as a case study – https://www.retrosuburbia.com/case-studies/eco-thrifty-retrofit-case-study/ – attendees can expect to learn many of the strategies described in David Holmgren’s book. More details HERE.  Castlecliff.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

2:00 – 3:00 Making Biochar – Shane Middlemiss. $20

Biochar retains nutrients, water and microbes and is a fantastic amendment to poor soils like those with mainly sand or clay. Learn how to make your own in a low or no cost kiln and how to activate it for best effects. Complimentary sample bag of biochar included.

73 Virginia Road. Park on the roadside.

Register: shane@e-govwatch.org.nz

5:00 – 6:00 Live for the Land Open Day and Tour – Phil Holden. Donation

Come and plant some seeds in our nursery including a guided tour of the urban garden property . Learn of our bee keeping business and future plans .

Koha donation welcome and a plant to take home. 106 Matai Street, Castlecliff

6:00 – Shared Meal, 106 Matai Street, Castlecliff

 

Sunday, 9th September

9:00 – 12:00 Kaitiaki Farm Tour – Nelson Lebo. $40

Ever since the Whanganui floods of 2015 we have focused on climate-proofing our farm to the greatest extent possible within a budget. The tour is an ideal case study demonstrating drought-proofing and flood-proofing simultaneously. For a list of topics please click HERE.  Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

9:00 – 3:30 Sourdough Workshop: the basics with SourBros bakery – John Wilson and Matt Ellingham. $30-40 (Pay what you can afford)

Experience the sourdough process from mixing through to shaping and baking in this hands-on workshop. We’ll be doing everything by hand so be prepared for sticky fingers!

While the dough rises, we’ll delve into the science of bread, the role of yeasts, bacteria and enzymes, creating recipes and managing time and temperature. There’ll also be tips on how to incorporate sourdough into your daily schedule and bake artisan loaves in your home oven.

The workshop includes two loaves that each participant will make themselves to take home afterwards and sourdough starter (please supply your own jar/container). Bring a plate for a shared lunch.

Place: Lucky bar, 53 Wilson St, Central, Whanganui. (bring a plate to share for lunch)

Register: john@sourbros.co.nz

10:00 – 2:00 Natural Cheese Making – Bronwynne Dowson Anderson. $75

This teaches how to make cheese the natural way using raw milk, home grown cultures and not spending a fortune on equipment.

For each of these classes people will take home what we make. All ingredients provided and includes refreshments.

Register: kiwibokslady@gmail.com

12:30 – 2:00 Keeping backyard chickens – Cyd Welsh and Nelson Lebo. $15

This workshop covers chicken breeds, characteristics, and common pests and diseases, as well as different approaches to care and management. Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

2:00 – 3:00 How to build a low-cost durable chicken tractor – Kaitiaki Farm Interns. $10  Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

3:00 – 4:00 Building Beautiful Garden Beds – Nelson Lebo. $10

Learn the cheapest, easiest and best way to prepare and build ‘No-Dig’ garden beds without the need of a rotary hoe or back-breaking digging! Kaitiaki Farm, No. 2 Line.

Register: theecoschool@gmail.com

2:00 – 4:00 Annual Heirloom Seed Swap – Whanganui Seed Savers. Donation

This is a chance to meet other Whanganui gardeners and to swap surplus heirloom and open pollinated seed that you have bought or saved. It will be a relaxed, friendly gathering with a cup of tea to follow.  If you have seedlings or plants you would like to share please bring these along too. You don’t need to have seed to share in order to partake.

Bring:   Details of your seeds such as a description, variety, date saved/use by date and any other notes you would like to share. A pen and envelopes to take seed home in.

Quaker Meeting House, 256 Wicksteed Street.  
Queries: nangethepange@hotmail.com

 

Winter Solstice on the Farm

The shortest day of the year came and went but it felt a lot like summer. To mark the day we planted some ake ake trees.

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The kids were down to their undies.

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And easily distracted from the task at hand.

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Mama worked on cutting some firewood.

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The garlic we planted a fortnight ago is up.

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Strawberries looking good.

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A great day for the solar dehydrator.

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There was even time in the afternoon for papa to hit the waves.

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And the cat just slept.

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Peace, Estwing

 

Permaculture Internship @ Kaitiaki

An internship at Kaitiaki Farm can be an adventure. This weekend we rescued a lamb from deep mud on the neighbour’s property.

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Heloisa and Marina were happy to see the lamb freed. After a few hours her legs warmed up and she walked away. One life saved.

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Later that day we found over 100 sheep from another farm had come through a hole in the fence. No sooner had we herded them back through then we found a bull from another property had come through a different fence and was after our cows.

Of course this all means lots of fence work.

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And more fence work.

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Two skills we always teach our interns are pulling nails…

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…and composting. Back to basics for skill-building and learning.

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Along with the importance of keeping tools sharp.

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Never a dull moment and always a teachable moment. That’s how it is at Kaitiaki.

 

Peace, Estwing

 

Death on the Farm

Warning: This post contains images of dead animals. Feel free to skip this one if you think you may be squeamish. But please tune in to the next one for an uplifting post on climate deniers and climate heroes.

 

It seems the last five months have been about death on our farm, and the neighbouring properties. It started with the dead sheep over the fence – I’ve counted around 30 so far – dating back to July.

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Here are three dead ewes at the bottom of a land slip.

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During the long, damp, cold winter we bottle fed two lambs. Babe was an amazing friend for our daughter and as spunky and loyal as a dog. He died overnight of pulpy kidney with no warning. When I found him the next morning I was devastated. I have not cried that hard in a long time.

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Then Babes step brother, Sausage, died of the same condition last week. I did not cry.

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Along with these two lambs I also found three others dead on the neighbour’s property. About a month ago this ewe died leaning against our fence and left an orphaned lamb. We rescued the lamb and rang the farmer, but he’s got bigger issues to deal with than collecting a lamb. She is still with us for now.

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It’s strange how you feel sorry for some animals when they die, but kill other ones intentionally to eat. This lamb is in our freezer.

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Pests are another huge issue for us. I buy rat poison by the 3kg bucket. Along with killing mice and rats, even the odd possum will overdose on rat poison. But the main way I kill possums is with a “humane” possum trap that breaks their necks instantaneously. I think it is a great tool, manufactured locally and reusable. I have anchored it to this frame and put it on our roof because that’s where most of the possums go at night.

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We have tallied about six possums so far, and the numbers will only increase as we move from spring into summer.

All of this death, I have to admit, has hardened my once sensitive feelings about cute little fuzzy animals. I have always been an animal lover and have rescued countless injured creatures during my life. Nowadays I shrug when I see that our cat has killed a baby rabbit. From the earth and returned to the earth – all creatures great and small.

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I remember agonising over the first chicken I killed for dinner. Now it’s easy, especially after dealing with all the heartbreak over this winter. Thanksgiving is on the horizon and there are three roosters on the menu.

Peace, Estwing