I been standing in the rain The cold hard driving rain I stood all the pain
Hot composting, standing in the rain and learning about murnongs
The worst of winter seems to have passed us by now, and our hearts are singing with thoughts of spring – our fruit trees’ buds are beginning to swell, bees are venturing out to collect pollen, and soon we’ll be getting ready to plant out our summer crops! Closer to home, we’ve been putting our crops of lemons to good use, making limoncello and lemon cakes, and using excess honey from our beehives to dabble in the medieval art of mead-making. The chooks have been pumping out eggs even through the worst winter had to offer, so we’ve always had omelettes with kale to keep us going – but we’re definitely looking forward to some summer fruit.

As the nights have been a bit colder, we’ve also found ourselves in front of the TV… And turns out permaculture is creeping into the mainstream even more than we thought! Permaculture educator extraordinaire Pete the Permie and his amazing property were featured on Gardening Australia recently, and SBS’ Gourmet Farmer has gone full permie, with the latest season focusing on regenerating the soil on the farm. And who better to ask for help than Hannah Moloney from Good Life Permaculture! They’re definitely a few shows worth checking out…

Given the weather of late, there can be no other theme but rain. And who better to give us the song of the month than the Reverend Al Green with his soulful Standing in the Rain?

Blitz Requests
Over the last month the Designers’ Guild has been joined by some mighty fine people: Prue, who is currently volunteering at CERES and has  Cert IV in Horticulture; Michelle from the Bellarine Peninsula who did her PDC in Geelong; Abdullah who did his PDC at Zaytuna Farm and also holds a Diploma of Horticulture; Raffaella from the Dandenong Ranges who also did her PDC at CERES; and Jessica, who did her PDC at the Rocklyn Ashram.

We also saw two new designs kick off thanks to the influx of great new talent above – Amanda, Martin, Jessica are getting stuck into Alice and Matthew’s place in Brunswick, and Jessica is also investigating what may be our smallest blitz yet – Claire’s courtyard in Mont Albert. We can’t wait to see these come to fruition!

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Barwon Heads
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Crib Point
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Wheelers Hill
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Remember that the above are locations awaiting designs – with so many designers currently invested in other projects right now, it may be a while before these get underway.

Hero of the Month: Murnong
Historically growing by the plenty in the wild, the Murnong is a native Victorian plant that was once used and cultivated as a key food by local Aboriginal communities in the Melbourne area and surrounds before European colonisation.

With the loss of Indigenous knowledge about this and numerous other edible native plants in Australia, much of the information that has survived is fragmented and incomplete. What we do know, though, is that these Microseris species can be eaten raw or cooked – and roasting is a great way to bring out the natural flavours.

Want to learn more about the indigenous plant? Click here!

Beets and Pieces
Could a return to bartering be the key to cutting food waste? This cafe is trying
Any successful gardener knows that having too much of something at once can quickly lead to waste — which is why one Geelong cafe has revived the art of bartering.

The cafe is turning that abundant homegrown produce into a type of currency, encouraging customers to swap their surplus fruit and vegetables for coffee.

The cafe’s manager Jaz Hobson said the chefs endeavoured to incorporate whatever people supplied into their seasonal menu.

To find out more about how Jaz is managing her cafe, check out the original article from the ABC here!

Australia's first native rooftop farm is not just about bush food
The co-founders of Indigenous start-up Yerrabingin brought to life the 500-metre-square space on top of an office building in the industrial area with more than 2,000 medicinal, edible or cultural native plants.

In addition to producing over 30 native bush foods, the rooftop will serve as a space for education, Indigenous employment opportunities and a range of community benefits including workshops on sustainability and wellbeing.

Sounds good? Check out the full details in the original article from SBS.

Back in the Garden
It may still be cold outside, but you can the good news is you can start thinking about what to plant for your summer crops! If you’ve got a greenhouse or somewhere warm, think about getting some seeds in to get a head-start on your summer planting. Angelo from Deep Green Permaculture has some great tips on starting your annual vegetables indoors – check it out!

Things you can plant in August include:

Seeds you can plant in August include:
Asparagus  Parsnip
Beetroot  Peas
Cabbage  Potato
Cape Gooseberry  Radish
Capsicum  Rocket
Chilli  Shallot bulbs
Eggplant Snow Peas
Globe Artichokes  Spring Onions
Kohlrabi  Strawberries
Leeks  Sunflowers
Lettuce  Thyme
Mint  Tomato
Mustard greens  Watermelon
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!


permablitz melbourne
eating the suburbs, one backyard at a time


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