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Here is the website for Permaculture Northern Beaches, where you can find a lot of very good information on all things Permaculture, environmental and organic plus more. PNB has public monthly meetings and various workshops throughout the year.

http://ww.permaculturenorthernbeaches.org.au/

What’s coming up:

Thursday, May 31 – 7:15 PM
BUSH FOODS

Interested in traditional bush plants and their uses as food and medicine?
Jess Sinnott is an owner and educator from the indigenous company Koori Kinnections which runs bush food cooking classes, school incursions, guided bush walks, resource talks, weaving workshops and more. It is an 100% Aboriginal owned and employed company in Sydney.
Jess Sinnott is a Yuin and Wailwan woman living in Sydney. She has gained a wealth of knowledge about Aboriginal culture, history, and heritage. She will talk us through traditional bush foods and bring along a few delicious dishes for us to sample that use bush food ingredients!

Entry is by donation. All welcome. No need to book.
Doors open at 7:15 PM at Nelson Heather Centre, Banksia Room, 5 Jacksons Road (off Pittwater Rd), North Narrabeen.
The event is part of PNB’s Green Home initiative made possible by the Northern Beaches Council Community Grant program.

Aboriginal+Foods

Thursday, June 28 – 7:15 PM
‘LIVING THE CHANGE’ – THE MOVIE

Sometimes it can feel like the environmental, economic and social issues the world is currently facing are too big, too overwhelming, to be dealt with by individuals?
‘Living the Change’ explores solutions to the global crises we face today – solutions any one can be part of – this is inspiring stories of people pioneering change in their own lives and in their communities in a sustainable and regenerative way.
From forest gardens to composting toilets, community supported agriculture to time-banking, ‘Living the Change’ offers ways we can rethink our approach to how we live. Watch the trailer here: https://livingthechangefilm.com/
Entry is $7 non-members and $5 for members. Soup is available for $3 a bowl/cup. Please bring crockery and cutlery on the night. All welcome!! No need to book.
Doors open at 7:15 PM at Nelson Heather Centre, Banksia Room, 5 Jacksons Road (off Pittwater Rd), North Narrabeen.
The event is part of PNB’s Green Home initiative made possible by the Northern Beaches Council Community Grant program.

Living-the-Change-Movie-Poster-2

 

This two-day course is a great overview of all aspects of permaculture – so as to enable you to take the next steps to incorporate this into your life. Over the weekend we will cover topics from organic gardening, sustainable housing, soil, site analysis for your garden/site, permaculture design, and zoning. You will receive an Introduction to Permaculture certificate and a copy of Bill Mollison’s book ” Introduction to Permaculture.”  The course will be held at the Coastal Environment Centre (CEC) on Pelican Walk, Narrabeen Lagoon.  This will also allow for some practical exercises. You will learn how to include permaculture design in your own home and garden.

Teachers for the weekend include Margaret Mossakowska, biologist, and Moss House Sustainability founder and Michelle Sheather, international ecologist, Permaculture Northern Beaches Committee. Organised by Moss House, supported by Permaculture Northern Beaches.

Organised by Moss House and Crop Swap supported by Permaculture Northern Beaches.The course will be from 09:30 – 4:30 pm on both days.

Cost:  $315 for Crop Swap, community garden and permaculture group members, $350 for non-members, concessions available for students, pensioners, unemployed.

BOOK NOW AS PLACE ARE LIMITED!  For bookings and information please contact – elle232@gmail.com with the subject heading ITP June 2018.

CEC backs onto the Narrabeen caravan park and is next to Narrabeen lagoon and beach if you are looking for accommodation for a weekend educational break! There are also many B&Bs available nearby.  Buses stop at Pittwater Rd. Narrabeen High School and it is a short walk to CEC.

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Down at the garden we are tackling a huge problem.. NUT GRASS!!!!! We are not sure where it came from, maybe in a load of soil or mulch but it is proving very difficult to eradicate. It is in the paths and garden beds. We have hand pulled it but it’s a crafty little devil and insists on returning,  not once, twice or three times, but more often, and not in a few months time, but a fortnight later!

So…. Dr Google says spray with vinegar for organic control. PERSEVERANCE is needed… and patience.

So we are digging it out (DON’T compost it) to weaken the spread of its rhizomes. We remove and bin seed heads to prevent wind-borne spread and we are laying down thick layers of cardboard and mulch on the paths.

It’s a pity we can’t eat it!

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Here is the little sucker. Note the 2 nuts. It also has a seed head (flowering just about now)

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After rain – new root shoots appear.

Thanks to Chris Carne from Tree Technics, 0407 485 437  http://www.treetechnics.com.au/homepage/  for the new mulch.

A Natural Garden

When did you last visit the garden? Was it when it was looking its best, flush with new Spring growth and seedlings? Resplendent in plum blossoms or mulberries.?Was it in Winter when the citrus was heavy with big orange balls of healthy fruit or were smaller green limes on display?

Was it after prolonged rain when everything, weeds and all, grew rampantly? Or when there was no rain and everything looked droopy and a little brown?

Did you visit before or after we picked up the discarded lolly wrappers, beer bottles, nappies and pizza boxes?

Was the garden a hive of activity with families, children and gardeners or were you the only one there?

And today, just now, what does it look like? Well, it can, as one critic said,  look a bit abandoned, but only to those who don’t now what to look for. Did you see the new bunches of grapes, the unusual Davidson plums growing up the trunk, the bright blue flowers of curly lettuce, the macadamias, the blueberries?

The community garden is an organic edible garden where we practice messy seed saving and hand removal of weeds, companion planting, Permaculture and more. You’ll see plants that attract beneficial insects and other that repel unwanted bugs. And you’ll see plenty of bugs and bees.

You’ll see different ways of protecting young seedlings, like a covering of an old banana leaf for sun-protection. You might catch us before we replant a spent vegetable bed; a bed probably full of weeds and straggly plants. But come the next week you’ll see that same bed, weeded, with a layer of garden-made compost and another layer of mulch, ready for planting.

Our beautiful garden relies entirely on our garden members. We are all volunteers. We clean, plant, weed, water, harvest and compost because we love the idea of contributing our little bit to making this planet more sustainable. Why don’t you come and join us!

 

 

 

 

 

Come and celebrate at our inspiring community garden. It’s our 7th birthday!

Starting at 10am. All welcome.

The day’s activities include:

  • All day – wood-fired pizzas
  • Good coffee
  • Local music
  • Bake & plant stall
  • Penned chickens
  • Children’s activities 
  • Prizes

 

  •       11am Compost Demonstration
  •       11am-12:30 Crop Swap 
  •       1pm Splitting a Native Bee Hive

 

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We’ve successfully had our general public composting bins at Manly Vale Community Garden for over 6 years now.

Of course it hasn’t all been smooth sailing. We’ve had our fair (unfair) share of yucky nappies, nappy wipes and all manner of plastic rubbish, but on the whole we feel you (and us) are making a great contribution to reducing landfill. Not to mention creating new soil to grow healthy fruit and vegetables (but that’s  another story).

Well… Recycling your food scraps has got a whole lot easier. We now have 10 litre food grade recycled plastic buckets.

  • Pop one on your kitchen bench, chuck in your food waste (no meat), add some torn up paper as you go.
  • When it is full leave it in the compost area, up the back in the Garden, and grab a new bucket! How easy is that!

 

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Can you believe we have been around for nearly 7 years! Seems like yesterday we were knee deep in community garden governance and local politics, policies and plans. We couldn’t wait to get our hands dirty and start gardening.

We didn’t know who would come to the garden or who would join us. What would their commitment be? Would they ‘get it’? Would we become a pristine abundant food forest or a bug-infested wasteland?

As it happens it all turned out alright. We have members from every walk of life and every age group and it seems like from every country. The most heart warming aspect of our adventure has been how much we have become part of the local community.

So without further ado I would like to invite you to:

MVCG’S 6th Birthday Spring Fair Saturday 3rd September – A celebration of community and organic gardening.

  • Learn how to build healthy soils with compost. Grab a free compost bucket for “drop and swap”. What’s that? You’ll have to come along to find out. You could win a compost bin!
  • See how to grow your own organic fruit and vegetables.The chooks will be clearing a garden patch ready for planting and we’ll take you on a garden tour as well as giving you the lowdown on keeping chickens.
  • Come and learn all about stingless native bees.
  • Visit the Hub and see what’s happening in your local environment. Representatives from Freshie Community Garden, the soon to be Curly Community Garden, Baringa Community Garden, Permaculture Northern Beaches, Kimbriki and the Mermaid Pool will be on hand to entice you to become more involved in your local environment.
  • We’re busy baking so we’ll have some home made goodies to sell as well as wood-fired herb pizzas and potatoes.
  • Local young man, Bayley Dunn,  will be entertaining us with his fabulous music.
  • And finally.. will you be a winner of the “best plot competition”, judged by Judith Sleipjen, the garden guru from Peninsular Living magazine.

See you there.

Happy Gardening

Lets talk about Pigeon Peas (Cajanus cajan)

They are small trees or shrubs. We have one growing in the garden. Pigeon peas are nitrogen fixers, deep rooted , very edible and easy to grow short lived plants.
The pigeon pea is a perennial legume from the family Fabaceae. Since its domestication in India at least 3,500 years ago, its seeds have become a common food grain in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Wikipedia
 It is very high in protein, potassium, dietary fibre and  contains calcium, iron, Vit B6 and magnesium.
 You can find out all about this versatile plant at this website.
Growing Pigeon Peas, An Incredibly Versatile Permaculture Plant
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