Saturday, November 9, 2019

Taking positive action - one step at a time

November Wild Fennel

Hello! The details for the next Wild Fennel gathering are:

Saturday 16th of November
9.30am - 12.30pm
Senior Citizens Kitchen, Daylesford Town Hall

Delight your senses with the beauty of roses and other astringent plants of the Rosacea family (think hawthorn, peach, blackberry, etc.)

You might like to bring...
- all of your roses!
- a notebook
- herbs, seedlings, seeds or homemade remedies, etc you would like to share or trade
- stories to share

This is a free gathering and everyone is welcome to attend

The facebook event is here:

Thank you to the incredibly talented and generous Brenna Quinlan for sharing her notes from our last meeting:

Click here for larger image

A message from Wild Fennel facilitator Rosie:

Hi everyone! I am looking for someone to help with sending out Wild Fennel emails and creating event details in a more timely manner than I can. It's a small job, but will help a whole lot. Please be in touch with me if this is something you're interested in.

* * *

Final Culture Club for the year

You are formally invited to join the Daylesford Culture Clubbers for their end of wonderful year gathering. Bring a jar of something fermented or preserved, take home a jar of something fermented or preserved.

Brenna Quinlan, you've done it again! Thank you so much for taking notes at the October Culture Club and allowing us to broadcast them so this knowledge can be shared far and wide:

Click here for larger image

* * *

Wild Pollinator Count

Australia has lots of wild pollinator insects that are often overlooked. European honey bees get a lot of attention because they are a social species, they are easy to identify and spot and their hives are easy to domesticate and manage.

However, many native insects also contribute to pollination in crops and gardens all around the country. We still need to do a lot of research to identify all our pollinator insect species, understand their ecology and how they are affected by human activities. So far, we know that Australia has around 2,000 native bee species, all of which are important pollinators. We also know there are a couple of thousand butterfly, wasp, fly, moth, beetle, thrips and ant species, some of which are documented pollinators. Unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of information on the ecology of many of these insects, what flowers they pollinate, or where they are found.

The Wild Pollinator Count gives you an opportunity to contribute to wild pollinator insect conservation in Australia. We invite you to count wild pollinators in your local environment and help us build a database on wild pollinator activity.

The next Wild Pollinator Count is:

November 10 – 17 

You can join in by watching any flowering plant for just ten minutes sometime in the count week.

You don’t need to be an insect expert!
You don’t need fancy gear!
You may be surprised by what you see!

More info here:

* * *

Hepburn Seed Savers: out in the world, down in the soil

Have you visited our local seed library at the Daylesford Library yet?

Enthusiastic library staff member Sarah Hines took these photos:

Seed library co-ordinator Brenna Fletcher has done such a beautiful job!! If you are keen to get involved in this exciting vital project, please get in touch with Brenna.

* * *

A very different kind of world

Can you imagine a world where you can't forage for mushrooms or wild fruit on public land? Where you are not allowed to scrounge at the tip for materials? Can you imagine having to ask council for permission when you want to throw a birthday party at the pub? Or plant a tree on your nature strip?

After ten years, Hepburn Shire Council is making changes to some of its local laws about what can and can't be done on public land and in public places. While the laws are not too dissimilar to the ones made ten years ago, the new laws are more controlling and more suburban in flavour, and are completely at odds with the recent Climate Emergency declaration and the acceptance of the award winning Z-Net Plan, a 10-year masterplan for the Hepburn Shire to reach 100% renewable
electricity supply, zero-net energy and zero-net emissions by 2029.

Please have a read of the new proposed laws. If, like so many of us, you are outraged by the proposed laws, you have until 5pm on Friday December 13 to send a submission to Hepburn Shire Council to let them know. 

Please feel free to read submissions by David Holmgren, Patrick Jones and the Z-Net team.

* * *

Co-operation - a way of living for ourselves & the planet

Following on from the hearty community conversation in May on Co-operatives as alternative economic structures, Localising Leanganook is hosting a workshop to continue the discussions and drill more deeply into new and emerging cooperatives in central Victoria, cooperatives that are responding to both community and ecological needs.

What: An experiential workshop on Co-operatives: principles, benefits and challenges. Contribute towards three fledgling ventures.

When: Saturday November 30th 2019, 10am to 4pm

Where:  Daylesford, Yandoit and Castlemaine

The November 30th workshop will visit three emerging co-operative ventures in central Victoria:

First, Goathand Co-operative – a community owned and managed shepherding co-operative that combines goat browsing and grazing with manual handtool work as a powerful method to reduce dominant weed species and fuel loads in the steep gullies and common land around Daylesford and Hepburn.

Second, a common land/farm co-operative on 50 acres of fertile land in Yandoit, where workloads, risks, learnings and experiences are shared, and where regenerative food growing practices are coupled with wildlife corridors. In the developmental stage, this co-op enables access to land for those locked out due to prohibitive costs.

Third, a manufacturing cooperative in/around Castlemaine. In the initial exploration phase, this co-op will support local people, respond to current and future bio-regional needs, provide meaningful and local livelihoods, and produce goods in an ecologically regenerative way. Potential manufacturing initiatives include: soy milk, re-creating animal milk processing (a variation on the old butter factories), materials required for ecological living, and biochar.

Practicalities: The workshop will start in Daylesford (the forest at the end of Tierneys Lane- the way will be sign posted) with the Goathand Cooperative. Then we will move to Yandoit Farming Co-op (Steeles Rd, Yandoit) and finally to the Ray Bradfield room in Castlemaine to brain storm manufacturing possibilities. Please wear comfortable shoes as there’ll be some walking involved.

Who: Dave Kerin from Earth Worker will share his extensive knowledge and experience with  co-operatives, both theory and practice. Vasko Drogriski, along with the other members of the Goathand Cooperative, will share their story including benefits and challenges. Michael and Lisa Jackson, from Yandoit Farm, along with Nikki Marshall will share beginning work and imaginings for the Yandoit farm commons/co-op. Localising Leanganook and interested central Victorians will share their thoughts about potential manufacturing co-ops for the area/bioregion.

Transport: Two 12 seater community buses are available to transport workshop attendees between Castlemaine, Daylesford and Yandoit, and car sharing is encouraged. Contributions to bus costs are requested.

Lunch and refreshments: BYO lunch and keep cup/water bottle. We will be eating lunch at Yandoit farm. A simple morning and afternoon tea will be provided.

This is a free workshop and everybody is welcome to attend.

Registrations are essential! For catering and transport. Please register via email to to assist with transport (bus and car pooling) and catering. For further information contact Nikki Marshall on 0432 232 073.

* * *

A community newspaper for Daylesford

A public meeting on Thursday 14 November at 7pm at the Daylesford Neighbourhood Centre.

The proposed Community News does not aim to compete with existing publications – the Advocate, Lost or the Local, or the Daylesford Grapevine – but rather, aims to share information about community happenings, regular gatherings, one off events, sporting results, information about local organisations and activities, and local services available in Daylesford and Hepburn Springs – information that contributes to the fabric of the community, and which is currently not always readily available.

The public meeting will consider the responses from the community to the Proposal, and if supported, will establish a community association to establish and run the Community News.

Cr Kate Redwood would like to hear your views and suggestions. Please email Kate with your comments and ideas. All written correspondence sent to Kate will be reported to the public meeting on 14 November. You are most welcome to attend the meeting and have your say.

* * *

Sing for the climate

Thank you Jen Bray and the Daylesford XR crew for encouraging us to raise our voices collectively as we sing for life.

(If you are reading this in your inbox, the vid won't show up, but you can see it here.)

Monday, October 28, 2019

Wild cultures

November Culture Club

This is a watch and learn workshop. No need to RSVP, just rock up.

* * *

Daylesford XR FLASH MOB

Every day we all act for the world, now it's time to sing for the climate!

Make a joyful noise for the planet! (Non-disruptive action.)

Melbourne Cup Weekend

Friday 1st November 4pm & 5pm


Sunday 3rd November 10.30am & 11am

Learn the song at home:

If you are reading this in your inbox, you can see the film here.

The FLASH MOB will be on both the Friday & Sunday.

Meet in the Coles Breezeway between Vincent St and Coles.

Wear brightly coloured clothing!

Make a sign with your climate action message!

Bring 5 friends!

Bring a musical instrument if you can!

More info here.

* * *

Hepburn Seed Savers

Do you wonder how seed lovers spend their nights?

The Hepburn Seed Savers' Brenna Fletcher says, "This is what my nights have been looking like. I feel so lucky to be doing this work of sharing and loving seeds. Seed savers bank will be in the library on Tuesday (October 29) this week!! So much excitement."

Soooo wonderful, Brenna! We can't wait to start borrowing seeds to grow and return.

* * *

Upcoming dates
Community Garden Working Bee - Saturday November 9, 10am - 12pm, Library Garden.
November Wild Fennel - Saturday November 16, 9.30am - 12.30pm, Senior Citizen's Hall.
November Repair Café - Sunday November 17, 1pm - 4pm, Victoria Park Pavilion.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

The beauty of what you love

Rumi writes 'Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.'

And look at the beauty local artist Kristeena Saville created! 

And here it is flying proudly over Canberra:

* * *

Happy birthday Daylesford Repair Café!!

This coming Sunday October 20th our local Repair Café is turning one!

Repairs will take place from 1pm - 3pm, followed by a birthday celebration from 3pm - 4pm, and then an evaluation and planning session will be held to reflect on what the repair café has achieved and what could be improved, and to make plans for the coming year. So if you've been along and had something repaired over the last 12 months, come and help celebrate, and bring your feedback in lieu of a gift.

RSVP here.

* * * 

October Wild Fennel

Come plantfolks, herbellies, curious cats and wanderers. We are gathering again for another morning of herbal tidbits and community connections.

We will revisit the foundational actions and plants as teachers before honing in on bitters, with the help of plants in the community garden, to help us get our creative spring juices flowing.

Saturday October 19
9.30am - 12.30pm
Skate Park Community Garden
Corner of Duke St and Stanbridge st, Daylesford

We'll be outside, so you might like to bring:
  • something to sit on (rug or chair) in case the ground is still wet.
  • Sun hat
  • Notebook
  • Any herbs, plants, seeds or homemade remedies you would like to share or trade at the end of the talk
  • Something to nibble on; bitters stimulate digestion and you might need something to tide you over until lunch
  • a cup
  • a thermos of tea or hot water to share

This is a free gathering and everyone is welcome to attend.

Each month we will look at different aspects of herbal medicine and focus on a particular plant, with the intention of reclaiming herbal medicine as an accessible mode of healthcare for ourselves and our community and bringing us into closer connection with the land and plants where we live.

RSVP here.

* * *

Extinction Rebellion Daylesford 

Hook into action on climate by joining the Daylesford XR facebook group or by visiting Extinction Rebellion Australia.

Spring Rebellion in Melbourne was energetic and disruptive. Some folk from Daylesford went down to take part in bringing the issue of climate crisis to the front page and nightly news.

Daylesford's next action will be to raise awareness in our local community through a FLASH MOB. There will be singing, dancing and music. 

Wanna join our CLIMATE FLASH MOB? Simply learn this song at home. 

We need everyone! There are roles for singers, dancers and musos too.

You can watch the clip here: 
(If you are reading this in your inbox you'll need to click through to the blog to see the clip.)

Lyrics are here.

Sheet music here.

Stay tuned for the next rehearsal. FLASHMOB date to be announced soon. It will be a weekend in the next few weeks.

* * * 

Hepburn Seed Savers

Here we go! The seed donation box and a few reference books have been officially installed at the Daylesford book library! The seed library is not far away now, but in the meantime please bring your seeds - they will be gratefully received, admired and then dispersed.

An article on the Hepburn Seed Savers was featured in The Courier on September 28. Congrats to Brenna Fletcher and all involved!

Photo: Adam Trafford

* * *

Castlemaine Weekly Farmers Market

Castlemaine is about to launch a weekly farmers market on Wednesday afternoons. Focussing on fresh produce, the aim is to move people's weekly shopping habits away from supermarkets while offering an avenue for small local producers to sell their wares.

You are invited to a fundraiser at Castlemaine's historic Theatre Royal on Sunday November 3 at 2.30pm - 5pm to celebrate the launch of the new weekly market. The fundraiser is a screening of In Our Hands - a film about food, agricultural systems and food sovereignty. 
Tickets available here.

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Beeswax wrap making workshops

Wrap sandwiches, half an avo, fresh bread, fruit, veggies or cheese. Cover a bowl, or pack a snack for your kids' lunch boxes.

Beeswax wraps are easy to make, washable, reusable and even compostable.

Plastic? No thanks!

Whether you'd like to ditch the glad wrap and start using wax wraps instead, or you already use them, please join us for this very exciting hands on sleeves rolled up workshop.

Tutor Dora Berenyi will be teaching us how to make the beeswax wraps, and to accomodate more people is presenting the same workshop twice:

Saturday November 30th
Workshop One 1pm - 2pm 
Workshop Two 2.30pm - 3.30pm
Senior Citizen's Hall (rear Daylesford Town Hall)

The cost is $30pp. You need to BYO fabric + scissors but everything is will be provided.

Places are limited to 8 people per workshop. Bookings are essential!

When you email to book your place please write in the subject line whether you'd like to come along to the first or second workshop. Once Dora has received your email she will send you her bank details.


Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Creating culture, taking action and building resilience

October Culture Club

This is a watch and learn workshop.
No bookings required - just rock up on the day.
This is a free event - everyone is welcome.
See you there!

* * *

Want to save the planet but don't want to go it alone?

Hook in with local climate action group - Extinction Rebellion Daylesford

Their aims are to raise awareness in our local community as well as participate in non-violent direct action locally and in Melbourne.

Calling all musos. dancers, singers, performers and everyone for a FLASH MOB style action coming soon!

Non-violent direct action workshop

Saturday October 5
1pm – 3pm
Senior Citizen's Hall (rear Daylesford Town Hall)

Run by Extinction Rebellion Daylesford.

For those interested in participating in the week of action planned in Melbourne from October 7 or other future events.

This is a free event and everyone is welcome to attend.
RSVP on the FB event, or just come along.

* * *

Facing Fire

Now that spring has sprung, it's time to start thinking about how you are going to prepare for the bushfire season ahead. HRN has some fire rakes and other tools available to borrow for free. Perhaps you might like to organise a working bee in your street or in a nearby gully with some friends or family? Please email us for more details about the tools.

HRN has a dedicated page on bushfire info, which you can find here.

Hepburn's own David Holmgren was recently interviewed for a Canadian film about bushfire resilience and understanding fire (as opposed to fighting fire), which you can watch below. (If you are reading this in your inbox you will have to click through to the blog to watch it.)

* * *

Some reminders re upcoming events:

Saturday Oct 5: Daylesford Culture Club - Spring clean your gut
Saturday Oct 5: Non-Violent Direct Action Training with XR Daylesford 
Saturday Oct 12: Daylesford Community Food Gardens monthly working bee
Saturday Oct 19: Wild Fennel
Sunday Oct 20: Daylesford Repair Café

Monday, September 23, 2019

Seeds of change: planting out our future

Introducing Hepburn Seeds Savers

"The smallest seed of faith is better than the largest fruit of happiness." -Henry David Thoreau

Introducing Hepburn Seeds Savers, the newest member of the HRN family. 

The Hepburn Seed Savers's charter is to help take responsibility for our Shire's local food supply. It will operate out of the Daylesford library, where it will have a permanent installation consisting of small packets containing seeds for vegetables and herbs that grow and thrive in our bio-region. 

The day to day loaning of the seeds will be managed by the Hepburn Shire Council library staff. 

How the Seed Library works:
  • Borrowers check out the seeds, then
  • Grow the seeds in their gardens
  • Use the crops to provide food for their family + friends
  • Allow some plants to mature (to produce viable seed)
  • Save and dry the seeds
  • Return the seeds to the library to be repackaged
  • The beautiful cycle of life continues…

Before the seed library can get up and running, organiser + seed enthusiast and down right wonderful woman Brenna Fletcher is putting a call out for seeds, and volunteers to be involved in this life honouring new project. 

Please email Hepburn Seed Savers to make a donation of seeds and to get involved.

* * *

Daylesford Extinction Rebellion Second Meet Up

We had Jane Morton (Extinction Rebellion Melbourne) come out and give an inspiring presentation last Tuesday on the climate emergency and what we can do about it. Now we're meeting up again to come to a decision on the best way forward for the emerging Daylesford Extinction Rebellion group.

Tuesday September 24
7pm - 8.30pm
Senior Citizen's Room (rear of Daylesford Town Hall)

We'll be deciding what form we would like our local XR group to take, and what works best for us (i.e. do we want to do a Non-Violent Direct Action training, more workshops, local protests, and what role will Daylesford play in the International rebellion in October?)

This is a free event and everyone is welcome to attend. We'd love to see new faces who couldn't make it last week, and if you can't make it this time, feel free to post ideas on the event page and we'll bring them up at the meeting.

Coffee and tea will be available. BYO snacks/bikkies to share if you would like.
Just a reminder that all HRN events are waste-free. No single use plastic please.

RSVP here.

Thank you to Hepburn's Brenna Quinlan for facilitating the XR group. We love your gutsy energy!!

* * *

Introduction to Natural Dyeing

Discover some of nature’s hidden sources of colour! Plants have been used to dye fibre and fabric for thousands of years and a beautiful natural palette is still available to you without the need for harmful chemicals. Local weeds or kitchen off-cuts can offer harmonious hues in a range of values and intensity. 

This hands-on workshop with Ilka White introduces a selection of local colour possibilities, as well as discussing fibre types, mordanting options and safety of dyes. A shibori technique will also be used to produce patterned cloth.

Sunday 29 September
10am - 4pm
Community Kitchen, 30 Templeton St. Castlemaine

Screening of 2040

For those who haven't seen it yet, Hepburn Wind is putting on a free screening of 2040.

The film captures a positive vision of our future where environmental challenges are faced with practical solutions available to us now.

Before the film screening, a panel will discuss how the Hepburn Shire is implementing its own vision to protect our planet and reduce emissions through local projects and the Hepburn Z-NET project.

Thursday October 17
6pm – 9pm
The Palais, 111 Main Road Hepburn Springs

Free screening but bookings are essential. RSVP here.

* * *

Wild Fennel's inaugural workshop

50 people turned up to the first Wild Fennel workshop. 50!! A sure sign that our community is ready to learn about the plants that surround us and to take responsibility for our own health.

A huge thank you to Rosie Cooper and Ali Grace for facilitating the workshop and sharing their knowledges so generously. Have a look at Brenna Quinlan's stunning illustration of the workshop:

Larger version here.

Details for the October Wild Fennel gathering here.

* * *

Mazel tov Hepburn Shire!

Congratulations to Hepburn Shire Council for fessing up to what's happening on our planet and declaring a Climate Emergency at last Tuesday's ordinary council meeting. 

If you'd like to know more about what it means when local councils declare a Climate Emergency you can read more here:

From the HSC FB page: 
...Council unanimously resolved to join a growing global movement and declare a climate emergency. This further supports the proactive actions Council is already taking to mitigate the worst impacts of climate change, by reducing our own emissions and assisting the community to reduce theirs. With initiatives like the Towards Zero Emissions Roadmap and Z-NET Hepburn Shire, Council and community are at the forefront of localised emissions reduction action.

Monday, September 16, 2019

Wild Fennel's inaugural workshop

Working with our herbal allies

At our recent Wild Fennel dinner it was decided that this exciting new community group will meet on the third Saturday of each month.

Please join us:

Saturday 21st of September
9.30am -12.30pm
Senior Citizen's Kitchen, rear of Daylesford Town Hall

At the first Wild Fennel gathering we will have:

  • an introduction to harvesting, processing and storing herbs
  • a look at the foundational actions and how to use our physical senses to discern medicinal properties of plants
  • a closer look at calendula; medicinal actions, uses and how to make a calendula infused oil

Please bring along with you:

  • pen and paper to take notes
  • any herbs, plants, seeds or homemade remedies you would like to share at the end of the workshop 

This is a free gathering and everyone is welcome.

Each month, under the tutelage of herbalist Rosie Cooper, Wild Fennel will look at different aspects of herbal medicine and focus on a particular plant, with the intention of reclaiming herbal medicine as an accessible mode of healthcare for ourselves and our community to bring us into closer connection with the land and plants where we live.

We will continue to meet on the third Saturday of each month. For those who are on FB, here is the link to the Wild Fennel group:

And here is the link to the September event page:

* * *

Some reminders re upcoming events:

Tuesday Sept 17: Extinction Rebellion workshop and info session in Daylesford
Wednesday Sept 18: Daylesford #ClimateStrike Crafternoon
Friday Sept 20: Global Climate Strike, Melbourne
Saturday Oct 5: Daylesford Culture Club
Saturday Oct 12: Daylesford Community Food Gardens monthly working bee
Saturday Oct 19: Wild Fennel
Sunday Oct 20: Daylesford Repair Café

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Spring beginnings: our sap is on the rise

The Hepburn Relocalisation Network was established over 10 years ago by Su Dennett and Maureen Corbett with the aim of encouraging local community members to take responsibility for their carbon output and ecological footprint by organising skill sharing workshops, public events, local food dinners, speakers and film nights. HRN's aim has always been to empower people through knowledge sharing, up-skilling, personal accountability and community collectivism.

While HRN supports any action that attempts to put an end to carbon intransigence on a governmental level, we do not encourage households to take a 'business as usual' approach while hoping the government takes action on our behalf. We are not victims unable to take responsibility for ourselves.

Our mother earth is suffering and it is everybody's responsibility to attend to her healing: to embed our hearts, actions and families in the local much more than the global, to reduce our carbon outputs by riding our bikes, walking, taking public transport more and only flying if we really have to, to divest from institutions that fund fossil fuels and destructive projects, to boycott companies that put profit before people and biotas.

We are endorsing the grass roots Extinction Rebellion movement and the Global Climate Strike while we continue to work at the household and community levels.

Extinction Rebellion Hepburn Shire information session

Extinction Rebellion (XR) is an international socio-political movement whose aim is to use civil disobedience and nonviolent resistance to protest against climate breakdown, biodiversity loss, and the risk of social and ecological collapse.

Citing inspiration from grassroots movements XR aims to rally support worldwide around a common sense of urgency to tackle climate breakdown.

Please join us for an XR info session + workshop:

Tuesday September 17 
Senior Citizen's Hall (behind the Daylesford Town Hall)

Please bring a plate of supper to share.
This is a free event.
You can RSVP here:

* * *

Global Climate Strike

We celebrate, cherish, honour and respect this beautiful planet of ours. It's time to let our government know we will not tolerate pollution, destruction or disrespect of our world any longer. Let us unite in our voices and march for the sake of every living being now and to come.

Friday 20 September
2pm - 4pm
Treasury Gardens, Spring Street, Melbourne
Jen Bray has created a FB page called Daylesford will be there! Sep 20 Climate Rally 

We have a goal to see over 140 people from Daylesford attend this rally. This figure represents 3.5% of our population, which has been said to be the tipping point number for peaceful protests to start to make real impact on government decision making. In March 1.6 million Australians rallied for the climate. This Strike aims to take that figure to a whole other level.

Students have invited everyone to join them for the biggest ever global #ClimateStrike on Sep 20, three days before the UN Emergency Climate Summit in New York. 
Can you help us reach our target of 140 Daylesfordians (and district) at the Climate Rally on 20 Sep? 
Make a sign! Catch a train! Bring your friends! Have a fun day while we collectivise our voices for the sake of our planet.

* * *

Daylesford Crafternoon - #ClimateStrike

HRN is hosting a crafternoon session to make banners and signs for the September 20 #GlobalClimateStrike!

Wednesday, 18 September 2019
3:30pm - 5:30pm
Daylesford Dharma School (prep class room)
90 Daylesford-Trentham Road, Daylesford

Join us for a creative, fun and purposeful afternoon in the prep classroom of the Dharma School.

BYO paint, brushes, cardboard and other banner materials you may need.

Entry by gold coin donation to the Dharma School's Plant a Tree fundraiser.

Thanks to Fe Porter for running this crafty session.

* * *

Asking Hepburn Shire Council to be truthful

This Tuesday night at Hepburn Shire Council's ordinary meeting in Trentham, HRN co-facilitator Meg Ulman will be asking two questions:

1. The former NSW fire chief, Greg Mullins, recently said in relation to climate change, the horse has truly bolted. 50 fires were burning in NSW in the first week of spring and it's not even an El Nino year. 14,000 homes burnt in California last summer, 9,000 the year before. This new reality is upon us too. Hepburn Shire is rated as the second most fire prone region in the state. Does Hepburn Shire Council unanimously agree that there is a climate emergency?

2. For the sake of our children, future generations and for the sake of life itself, will Hepburn Shire Council stand with over 1,000 other councils around the world, representing over 222 million people, and formally declare a climate emergency?

If you would like to send letters in support of Hepburn Shire's climate emergency declaration, please email to let them know.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

So much good stuff!

Hi everyone!

Just a reminder that the Wild Fennel herbal group is having its very first gathering this Friday the 23rd of August.

6.30pm - 8.30pm
6 Tierneys Lane, Daylesford
BYO dish to share for dinner (with as many local ingredients as possible) plus a plate & cutlery.
Please note this is a waste free event so no single use plastic please.

No need to RSVP, just come along!

* * *

Community food is serious business!!

Thank you once again to Serge, Jacques, Brenna, Charlie and everyone else involved in growing, picking, and sharing the amazing Captain's Creek organic veggies with the local community.

L-R: Brenna, Jaques & Charlie (Pic from Brenna's FB page)

The veggies were given away for a gold coin donation which went to HRN. Over $130 was raised. Thank you everyone!

* * *

September Culture Club

The next exciting Culture Club gathering will be an excursion to Herbal Lore Liqueurs.
Please join us on Saturday September 7 from 10am - 12pm at Lot 2 Railway Crescent Daylesford.

Owners Roger & Sue will discuss health, wellness and herbs and of course the fermentation process they employ to make their alcohols. They will also provide an enjoyable tasting of their herbal liqueurs, all of which have been crafted using a combination of carefully selected herbs to fulfil a particular health benefit.

We hope you will join us.

* * *
Planting a bushfoods garden

Community Gardener Patrick Jones with Bruce Pascoe at the Daylesford Library Community Garden, 2016

Inspired by Bruce Pascoe’s critical work, Dark Emu, The Daylesford Community Food Gardeners seek to honour, help repair and reinstate the intellectual & cultural heritage of the Dja Dja Wurrung through the creation and cultivation of a bushfoods garden along the north facing wall of the library at the Albert Street garden. They are currently looking for an enthusiastic gardener to lead this regenerative growing initiative. If you are interested in applying for this voluntary position, please email

* * *

Natural Building Course

Castlemaine Community House is offering a practical introduction to the world of natural building.

Learn resourceful and ecologically-centred construction through fun building projects around the community garden and get some more tools under your belt for resilience and self-sufficiency.

Develop a confidence in building that you can apply to any backyard sustainability project or incorporate into permaculture design systems.

Such projects are many and varied and may include earth pizza ovens and outdoor kitchens, garden seating and landscaping, animal shelters, potting sheds, planters and wicking beds, solar dehydrators, compost bays and cold frames, setting up netting and shade systems, building a composting toilet, beehives or even a garden studio or summer sleep-out!

Natural building techniques and concepts covered:

Understanding the principles of passive solar, thermal mass and insulation, breathability, seasonality, building appropriately for climate, embodied energy and ethical resourcing.

Learn cob construction, bottle walling, light earth, sustainable carpentry, foundations and drainage for small structures, and natural finishing techniques such as clay/lime renders and plasters.

Throughout the 8 week course there will be information on sourcing materials, a survey of traditional and resurgence natural building, theory and demonstrations, Q & A sessions and lots of hands-on practice to really come to grips with the materials and techniques.

Dates: 7th October – 25th November (8 weeks)
When: Mondays 9am – 4pm
Where: Castlemaine Community House, 30 Templeton Street.
Fee: $350 (payment plans available)
Tutor: Perri Campbell

For more information and to enrol:

* * *

Networks for Action

Transition Australia is hosting a convergence in Melbourne next month. Meg Ulman and Nikki Marshall will be attending on behalf of HRN and Localising Leanganook to spruik all the wonderful initiatives our region has going on, and to learn from other communities.
For more info.
For bookings.

* * *

Goathand gathering

Brad, Vasko and Patrick from Goathand co-operative are hosting a community working bee and lunch gathering. People are invited to come and learn what goats and shepherds with loppers can achieve together. A warming forest fire with endless hot drinks will keep our late winter labours well accompanied.

The 16 co-op goats have been on this site for a few months, and we’d like to do a final chop-n-drop session to leave the site looking wonderful. This is a cultural and learning day, so feel free to bring the whole family, an instrument or two and any friends who are interested in learning about community managed forests, goatherding and ecologically sensitive weed and bushfire mitigation in a climate change era.

Saturday August 31 between 10am and 2pm
Please bring a plate of food to share for lunch and any loppers, secateurs or pruning saws you may have.
Please contact goathand co-op for the exact location.

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Annual Yandoit Shindig

Once again the good folk at Yandoit Farm are hosting an annual gathering for Central Victorian permies, gardeners, homesteaders, back-to-the-landers, suburban-retrofitters, farmers, conservationists, natural builders, local food lovers, neighbours, allies, and curious minds.

This is an opportunity to spend an afternoon & evening catching up with old friends and making new ones. Kids are welcome but need to be supervised at all times as this is a working farm with the potential risks that go along with that. Please leave dogs at home (assistance dogs excepted).

You are very welcome to come early for a swim in the dam or come prepared and camp overnight! (If camping, please let Michael know) Please also feel free to invite like-minded friends to come along. This informal event was created a couple of years ago to strengthen links between permaculture communities and individuals around towns like Ballarat, Castlemaine, Daylesford, Bendigo, Ballan and other parts of central Victoria. If you know people who might like to join in, let them know!

Saturday, 16 November from 4pm
Yandoit Farm, Yandoit
BYO food & drinks, musical instruments, comfy chairs and rugs
Facebook event page

Monday, August 5, 2019

The last harvest of the season + Frenemy Fire

Hello vegetable lovers!

The crew at Captain's Creek Organics are just about to harvest the last of the season's veggies: carrots, beets, cabbages, radishes, leeks, onions, silverbeet, and everybody's favourite: weird looking broccoli.

From 1pm to 5pm this coming Wednesday (August 7), at 16 Fourteenth Street Hepburn, you can come and take as many organic veggies as you'd like for a gold coin donation to HRN.

Please note the veggies will be picked on the day, and will be unwashed. Please bring your own boxes/bags.

Many thanks to Serge for growing the veggies, and to Jacques for co-ordinating the picking and sharing.

See you Wednesday arvo!

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Internationally renowned environmental historian Stephen J. Pyne is visiting Castlemaine while on tour in Australia. Professor Pyne will be giving a talk at Phee Broadway Theatre on

Thursday 8th August 
6.30pm - 8.30pm

Entitled 'Frenemy Fire: the best of friends, the worst of enemies,' Stephen's talk will draw on his work on the history of fire in Australia and globally, along with his experience as a fire fighter, to discuss how we can best live with fire as a friend, not just an enemy.

Stephen is one of the first authors to explore fire stick farming (indigenous use of fire for shaping the land). Stephen’s stories weave together fire science, fire history and cultures of fire across the ages and across the globe.

This event will provide practical ways that people living in central Victoria can understand fire management as it relates to them.

Stephen is Emeritus Professor at Arizona State University, and a much sought after speaker on fire. You can catch watch his TED Talk for a preview.

    You can book tickets at:

    Tickets are $12 or $10 (concession and Fryerstown residents).

    Light supper is included.

    Look forward to seeing you there.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Introducing Wild Fennel: Hepburn Herbal Group

Rosie Cooper is mad about plants. She forages them, she grows them, she drinks them, she eats them, she infuses them and she decocts them.

As of this coming spring, Rosie Cooper, practicing herbalist from Rare Beauty Botanicals in Guildford, will be facilitating a free monthly herbal group where participants will be taught to make their own tinctures, teas, oils, balms, infusions, love potions, herbal first aid kits, flower essences and herbal honey remedies.

Are you as excited about this as we are?! To kick things off Wild Fennel is hosting a potluck dinner where we will decide where and when to meet on a regular basis, and what we'd like to learn from Rosie during the first gathering, come springtime.

The details of the dinner are:
Friday August 23
6.30pm - 8.30pm
6 Tierneys Lane, Daylesford
BYO dish to share for dinner (with as many local ingredients as possible) plus a plate & cutlery.
No need to RSVP, just come along.
Please note this is a waste free event so no single use plastic please.

Hope to see you there!

Friday, July 26, 2019

Let's make mead

This is a watch and learn workshop.
No bookings required - just rock up on the day.
This is a free event - everyone is welcome.
See you there!