Free carbon – everywhere!
It’s June already! And the sound of pelting rain on the roof at night is a sure reminder that winter is well and truly here. So if you’ve got any frost-sensitive plants out there, it’s time to get them into shelter…
Lately we’ve been getting around the neighbourhood with really big bags – the perfect size to fill with fallen leaves. There’s a feast of free carbon to use as mulch out there, or to use as ground cover or even to create a chook’s version of Ikea’s ball room – you KNOW they’re going to love that! To celebrate this wonderful season of falling leaves, we’re once again giving the song of month to the White Stripes – this time with Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground.
The Designer's Guild Sessions are BACK!
It’s been a while – but they’re back! The world-famous* totally amazing Permablitz Designer’s Guild Sessions!
As a reminder, these Guild Sessions are designed as a way to gather and share skills, as well as meet the other great people in the Permablitz network. They are hosted at rotating locations across the city.
This time around, we have none other than Dan Palmer – Very Edible Guy, permaculture educator extra-ordinaire, thoughtful blogger and one of the Permablitz co-founders! Dan’s chosen topic for the evening is: “Permaculture Design as Facilitated Emergence”.
Permablitz #198 – Newport
This blitz was the result of a super-powered team-up with the Country Women’s Association, My Smart Garden and little old us – and with our combined efforts we made this Newport yard and verge more sustainable – and more edible!
Permablitz #197 – Meadow Heights
Noura and Barry are a young couple in a new suburban house on about 1300 m2, with a sloping backyard with a bit of couch and oxalis, and an old shed but not much else. A blank canvas ready for some serious plantings!
Permablitz #196 Brunswick – the follow-up!
Two weekends after the Permablitz proper, the design team returned to wrap up the job. It was amazing to see how much lighter and more open the backyard looked, and how well the alternative lawn was settling in!
Hero of the month
Bull’s Horn (or Cow Horn) Capsicum is an old Italian heirloom variety of sweet capsicum that produces curved fruits up to 20cm long. The fruits can be harvested green or red after 70-90 days – and they are very prolific.
And why do we like them so much – because they’re easy to grow and produce so much!
To read more about this amazing plant, click here!
How To Make a Small-Scale Wicking Bed
Wicking beds are well-known as a water-efficient way to grow your plants. Adrian’s backyard is one-third concrete, and as such wicking beds and wicking pots have been the best ways for his family to grow in this area. It works very well for him, and he’s managed to grow herbs, veggies, chillies and a handful of other edibles in these pots – especially since the concrete area is the sunniest part of the yard.
On one sunny Autumn afternoon Adrian decided to document the steps he typically uses to put one of the smaller ones together. And believe me – if he can do it – anyone can!
Bits and Pieces
PFAF – it’s the Permaculture Designer’s bounty of plant info
One of the truly great resources for Permaculture designers is the plant database of “Plants for a future” (PFAF). Based in Cornwall, England, PFAF have so far catalogued over 7000 edible, medicinal and generally useful plants and sorted them in a magnificent searchable database.
In our humble opinion, there is no single better source for designers to find the right plants for their designs. Whether you are a gardener hoping to discover amazing alternatives to the classic vegetables, or a plant lover excited to click through the more unusual and interesting plants from across the world, this site has something for everyone.
In the Garden
Now that it’s getting colder, there’s a few jobs to get done around the garden! Any fallen leaves can become an excellent source of mulch – if you don’t have any in your own garden, don’t worry – many suburbs are literally covered in leaves right now! It’s also an excellent time to divide and plant perennials. Bare-root season is almost upon us, so have a think about where you can squeeze in another fruit tree – you know you can never have enough!
Seeds that do well in June include…
- Broad Beans
- Mustard Greens
- Shallot bulbs
- Snow Peas
- Strawberry runners
- Strawberry (seeds)
Remember: some seeds do better starting off in punnets, some in pots and some in the ground. To get the best from your seedlings be sure to check the best methods first!
Til next month, from deep in the burrow of Permablitz Melbourne decentral
– keep those home fires burning!