Over the past week, I have been undertaking my Permaculture Design Certificate and have been privileged enough to be taught by the man himself, Bill Mollison! Bill has recently had a stroke and so his lectures have been limited to one session per day, however to hear him speak and to listen his amazing years of knowledge through each story has been fascinating. Most of the lectures have been given by Geoff Lawton, another inspirational person, who was originally taught by Bill also. As a team, Bill and Geoff make a dynamic duo and it truly is a privilege to hear them speak with such passion and wisdom.
While doing the course, my brain has been going into overdrive and it has been reassuring that our farm, which we have informally based on Permaculture principles and modelled on Joel Salatin’s Polyface farms, is on the right track! As time progresses, we will be adding various earthworks to the farm to capture more water to drought proof the property, but also to ensure it stays hydrated, even through long periods of dry. Permaculture earthworks can be described as a sponge, which absorbs a momentous amount of water and releases it slowly through the landscape. Fun times ahead and maybe even a workshop or two!
The downside of the course has been that I have had to be away from the family and the farm for the past week and also the coming week… It is my holiday time now and I was planning on pushing the market garden ahead and continue with the greenhouse… I can’t even get my seedlings started… maybe I could start them here where I am staying for the week and bring them home with me… In any case, the broad beans are now big enough to fend for themselves and looking extremely healthy! The garlic is slowly being taken over by weeds so need to weed and mulch (at least the cockatoos are leaving them alone!) and the lettuce has survived the cockatoo attacks with the netting, but the shade has slowed its growth.
On a final note, I would like to introduce our newest member to the family “Gammy”, a lamb we have been raising because Bowback, it’s mum, kicked her off. She will be our house sheep, taking care of the backyard (saving me from having to mow the weeds/grass) and will also eat the weeds in the market garden area and fertilise at the same time!
Ahhh the joys of farming! I wouldn’t give it up for quids!