Blitz 108 in Coburg at Gigi and Avi’s
There was a wonderful blitz the Sunday before last at Gigi’s and Avi’s house in Coburg. Jo one of the designers and facilitators sends us this report:
Dylan and I arrived at Gigi’s at 8:30am, welcomed by concrete rubble and pavers erupting from the earth. The compost and mulch piles loomed ominously at the back gate, the stairs presenting a cheerful bottleneck for the wheelbarrows. The delivery men had meant to deliver half of the mountain to the front. But Dylan and I were naively unperturbed, despite or perhaps because of never attending a Permablitz before and finding ourselves in the driving seat. So I attribute the smoothness of the event to delicious beginner’s luck and the dedication of Adam Grubb of Very Edible Gardens and the lovely group of people who turned up to sweat it out digging holes and untangling the terrible mat of roots where the palm tree once stood.
Amongst the rubble we discovered a treasury of worn bluestones that my amazing team of retaining wall builders jigsawed together. In the background four grim faced mattock wielders had the unenviable job of trying to cut through the unmoving mass of palm roots to cut the path. Leaving me with the cringing feeling of being a prison guard driving a chain gang they broke through the mass with what seemed like sheer strength of will and sweat rolling down their brows. Like soldiers on parade the brick edging quickly fanned around the edge of the path waiting for its mulch filling.
After an incredible lunch of beautiful curry, rice and roti and a quick swig from our personalised cups we set out to get this thing done!
We had reached that satisfying point where, the really hard slog finished, things began to quickly take shape. The paths greedily gobbled barrow after barrow of mulch and garden beds brimmed with compost and a lucky few got their comforting layer of mulch.
It will be amazing to see when the garden is planted out and lush. Perhaps with some mechanical help those palm roots can be put in their place and the pond can brim with fishies and frogs. It was such an exciting experience to see our plans take shape. What a dedicated group of amazing workers!
And Gigi writes in her thank you letter:
I spend alot of time lamenting the failure of collective action in the work on climate change that I do. Well, Sunday was a fantastic reminder of what can be achieved when excellent people get together with good leadership, good will, a good plan and good food. There was such positive energy which made the hard work almost enjoyable.
We went from a garden full of jackhammer rubble, plastic detritus, bare earth and unturned soil to the first stages of a garden oasis.
We brought to life Jo’s delightful curved garden path, despite the tough ground underneath.
Thanks to Dylan’s magnificent ramp and your hard labour we managed to transport 8 cubic metres of organic compost and another 8 cubic metres of mulch onto the garden beds. Adam tells me he didn’t think it could all be done.
We did the hard job of putting posts in the ground and establishing the infrastructure for the espaliered orchard and chook yard.
And we even planted seedlings and a couple of fruit trees at the end.
All of this could not have been achieved without the wisdom and commitment of Adam and the permablitz crew, the fantastic design and planning from Dylan and Jo as well as the broader design team of Mathias, Paras and Cindy.
Thanks to everyone who cooked, looked after kids, did shopping runs, sourced cardboard, lent tools, entertained our dog and of course gardened…..
It was an awesome effort and we welcome you all to partake in the fruits of your labour over the coming years.
Gigi, Kristian and Avinash