Friday, April 22, 2011

The Great 'Simple Living' Survey is still open...

Oops! I have just discovered The Great 'Simple Living' Survey is still open, so as well as reading the interesting results so far, you can still fill in the survey for future research purposes.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

National Permaculture weekend 30th April, 1st May - excitement builds! Also preserving workshops and surveys galore

National Permaculture weekend is fast approaching and preparations for the feast of events, activities and, of course, food are coming along and we're all getting very excited.

Saturday 30th April is a day of celebrations, at the Daylesford Community Garden in Albert Street (next to the library). It all starts with a bang at 10am when the Community Garden Permablitz happens, so get your work clothes on and head over nice and early!

Prepare yourself by:
- choosing some seedlings - to plant in the garden during the Community Garden Permablitz (10am);
- collecting some apples (find a yummy wild unharvested tree!) and finding a bottle or two - to press some juice (11am-3pm);
- finding a plain cotton t-shirt or top, in your drawers or at the local op shops - to screen print on the day (11am-2pm);
- dehoarding some things to swap at the swap table - seeds, plants, fruit, vegies, clothes... (11am-3pm);
- preparing your favourite recipe made as much as you can from local ingredients - to share at the evening meal (6pm) while you listen to reLOCALisation stories, poetry and music around the fire; and
- getting excited about the music, talks, chestnut roasting, clay work, wood carving, films (in the library), and permaculture design exercise (at Raelands Park, Raglan Street) that are happening on the day!

Sunday 1st May, the official National Permaculture Day, is a day of tours. Meet at the Community Garden at 9:50am for free tours of 3 Daylesford food gardens. Or you could take the chance to book in for a tour of Melliodora, Hepburn permaculture gardens, with David Holmgren (held monthly September through to May). The mudbrick passive solar house tour runs 10am-12:30pm, and the garden, orchard and animal systems tour is at 2pm-4:30pm, $25 per person, per tour (including morning or afternoon tea), call 5348 3636 or email for bookings. As a bonus, first two HRN people to book for the afternoon Garden tour can come free, so let us know if you are HRN when booking!

And in the mean time preserving workshops seem to be the go all around...

Next Wednesday 27th April Su is running a preserving workshop from 9am to 1pm at Melliodora. The cost is $50 and there is a limit of 6 people so get in quick! Su will cover preserving tomatoes, fruit, juice and chutney.

And the Castlemaine Community House is running some preserving workshops too, Quinces: what to do with them on Saturday 7th May, 10am-1pm, Olives: preserving and pressing on Saturday 28th May, 11am -2pm and Apples & Pears: making juice and cider, Saturday 25th June, 11am-2pm.

A number of film screenings are happening in Castlemaine as well with the first ones being The Gleaners and I on Sunday 8th May, 5pm, and The Real Dirt on Farmer John on Sunday 22 May, 4:30pm.

Email Lucy or call 5472 4842 to book or find out more about the Castlemaine workshops and films.

Lastly, if you haven't already, click here to fill out the Hepburn Wholefoods Collective consumer and backyard food producer survey. They would greatly appreciate you taking the time to complete a survey, to assist them to establish the community's needs regarding sustainable wholefoods options within the Hepburn Shire.

Speaking of surveys, we were a bit slow off the mark to tell you about the Simplicity Institute's Great 'Simple Living' Survey as it has now closed, but the results are very interesting at a quick glance. 87% of survey participants who have made a transition toward a simpler life report that they are happier living more simply! (That includes me.) :-) And only a measley 0.2% said that they were 'less happy'! Read all about it here. Living simply is a big part of transitioning to the future, so it's great to know that most people end up happier that way!

When we next get some spare time around here we will be working on a Household Audit project which aims to help us all learn better ways of doing things at home, a lot of which are about living more simply and reducing external consumption across all areas. Ask us more about this if you are interested in getting involved.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Peter Harper, this Saturday! National Permaculture Weekend celebrations!

Don't forget about Peter Harper's talk on Plants, Land and Carbon this weekend. 7:30pm this Saturday 16th April at the Hepburn Primary School Hall. Email or call 5348 3636 to book.

And, announcing the details of our upcoming National Permaculture Weekend celebrations, Saturday 30th April and Sunday 1st May! Da daa daa da da daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Join us from 10am Saturday 30th when events kick off with a Community Garden PERMABLITZ!

Please let us know if you'd like to help us out on the day or with organisation prior to the events. Otherwise just come along and join in the festivities! We'll have a marquee to keep us dry in the event of wet weather so come along rain, hail or shine. :-)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Peter Harper lecture, Bioenergy Seminar and Ballarat Permaculture happenings

Don't miss the unique opportunity to hear Peter Harper speak about Plants, Land and Carbon, and what role agriculture and land-use can play in decarbonising a fossil economy. Brought to Australia for lectures in Melbourne and Sydney by the British Council, we are fortunate to host Peter at the Hepburn Primary School Hall on Saturday, April 16th at 7:30pm. Book with us by email or phone 5348 3636.

CHAF along with Central Victorian Farm Plantations Committee and Ballarat Regional Treegrowers are hosting Dave Atkins to run a seminar on using woody biomass for bioenergy on Thursday 7th April in the Trench Room at City of Ballarat from 10:00 - 12 noon.

Dave Atkins is a world renowned forester from the US Forest Service. Dave set up the Fuels for Schools and Beyond program that has successfully overseen the installation of 14 biomass boiler systems in schools and hospitals across the States.

Three events with Ballarat Permaculture Guild:
Introduction to Permaculture with Graeme George - April 9 & 10
8:30am to 5:30pm both days at Ballarat South Uniting Church

Practical Pruning Apple Trees with Carolyn Jones - April 9
9:30am - 12:30pm at Snake Valley

Vegetable Garden Tour with John Ditchburn - April 9
10am to 12 noon at Soldier's Hill.
Truly an excellent garden to visit!

Email or call Steve on 0409 551 539 for more info and booking instructions for the Ballarat Permaculture events. Booking form available here.