I work as a Permaculture Design Consultant, helping others to develop productive gardens and educating anyone who will listen about the importance and ease of growing your own. My motto is that a garden should look good, smell good and taste good.
My career started about 13 years ago when my Uncle Ronnie gave me a copy of Introduction To Permaculture by Bill Mollison. It was Christmas 1997. I wasn’t really sure at the time why he thought that was an appropriate gift for a seventeen-year-old girl in the suburbs but, as I have since found out, it couldn’t have been more appropriate. It changed my life. I can’t tell you what resonated with me but, it switched something on inside. Since then, pretty much wherever I have gone in the world I have had my hands in the soil.
People who know me will tell you how passionate I am about growing things and cooking with whatever is ready to harvest today. During summer, when there is a glut of tomatoes or zucchini it’s not uncommon to find us up until 2am – pickling, saucing, jamming, whatever needs to be done to utilise what we have on hand.
Here on our suburban block we grow a good deal of what we consume in a year. Our rubbish bin goes out often with only a small bag in it. We compost all of our kitchen waste, paper and cardboard packaging and repurpose the rest. We don’t do any of this for political reasons. It’s just how we have settled into our lives in this house. We have developed good routines and we’ll never look back.
I had, like many others, been caught up in the rat race for the past few years. I hated it because I felt like I could be doing something really fruitful but, instead I felt like I just was treading water. I told my husband “I need a break. I want to spend next year in the garden”. That’s how the idea for this blog came about.
My main objective here is to help people to overcome the feast and famine cycle that is common in most vegetable gardens. I thought a blog might be a good tool to show people what I am doing at certain times of the year so that they will learn what to plant, when to plant, and how to do it in an environmentally friendly way. Although I focus on temperate climate gardens, a lot of the content will be useful for people in various climatic zones around the world.
This blog isn’t just about gardening because growing things is just one side of the story. We grow because we need to consume. I’ll be posting about what I do with the things that come out of my garden along with produce from friends, family or local producers. What’s important is eating fresh and eating local.
I should state from the outset that our garden is very new. You will have an opportunity to watch our garden evolve. I hope that it will demonstrate that what I do can be done by anyone.
I feel strongly that 30 min in the garden every couple of days can keep you well fed. I think the first half an hour when you get home is the best time. Gardening is relaxing so it’s a very good way to unwind from your busy day. The idea is to chip away your projects. Do a little bit here and a little bit there and before you know it there will be a whole lot going on.
I hope that my blog will inspire others to garden as I do because it’s fun, healthy and very rewarding.