Aquaponics – our evolution so far…

Guest post by Yvonne Lee of www.bargainhunter.com.au

I first came across the concept of Aquaponics a few years ago. I think it was from reading some discussion forums on Aussies Living Simply, but it could have been from a number of places. I even bought the Murray Hallam DVD and made my husband and a couple of friends watch it with me. At the time we had a pond with a few koi and so we rigged up a simple system to cycle some water into a laundry bucket which had some holes punched into it and some blue metal. I managed to grow a few vegies in there quite well and the water did become a lot clearer. I can’t find a picture of the very first laundry bucket system but here is a picture of the pond we had:

Continue reading Aquaponics – our evolution so far…

Photographs and Stories From Two Sydney Community Gardens

sydney community gardens
Newtown Community Garden

I woke up on Saturday morning to the sounds of howling wind and rain. I though, “Oh man, this is the day we are visiting Sydney gardens!” I was tempted to crawl back under the warm blankets, but to my surprise the day turned out to be very mild, and even cozy.

On Saturday, September 4 2010, few gardeners from Glebe Community Gardens (including myself) visited two fellow Sydney Community Gardens in an effort to research their methods and understand what successes can be applied at our garden.

Angel Street Permaculture Garden and Newtown Community Garden are a mere 10-minute walk away from each other, but they could not be more different (described below) in their approaches to community gardening. Both are successful and productive, and both have lot’s to teach us about community and abundance. Continue reading Photographs and Stories From Two Sydney Community Gardens

Watch “Gardens of Destiny” documentary with Dan Jason

Dan Jason photo

I really admire what Dan Jason does. I first saw this documentary while doing research for a college project. That was a time of great soul search for me, when I was feeling that I wanted to do ‘something’, but didn’t know what. Watching “Gardens of Destiny” documentary made it clear to me, for the first time, that there is hope because people like Dan Jason exist. I knew that what I wanted to do was re-connect with the land, be a happy human, the best human I can be.

This beautiful documentary about Dan Jason’s “Salt Spring Seeds” of Canada was produced by Jocelyn Demers in 2009. In the film, Jocelyn Demers meets with Dan Jason and other seed, food and political activists to discuss issues of seed saving, organic food projection, GMO, cancer cures and relationships between people and governments. All these topics are presented in gorgeous settings of Dan Jason’s seed sanctuary and saturated with hope. Multiple solutions are presented, and it just looks so beautiful and inspiring.

Running time: 63 mins (8 parts) Continue reading Watch “Gardens of Destiny” documentary with Dan Jason

Five Ways to Beautiful and Productive Balcony Gardens

Rastafarian Balcony Garden - Jamacian radio station
Rastafarian Balcony Garden – Jamacian radio station by cecilia macaulay

Like millions of people, I live in a city apartment with limited access to land. Fortunately, like millions of people again, I have an outdoor balcony, and it’s a growing opportunity not to be missed.

This weekend I really took the time to clean my balcony, take stock of what pots I have, and decide what I want to grow this summer. My main objective is to produce the most food possible, but also to create a beautiful sanctuary, where I can enjoy my morning tea or read a book.

I wanted some inspiration for this project, so I went looking around the web for ideas on how other people created their balcony getaways. Here you go, a gallery of beautiful and inspiring balcony gardens we can learn from. Continue reading Five Ways to Beautiful and Productive Balcony Gardens

Behind the fence of Sydney’s Community Gardens

City of Sydney has graciously sponsored a series of Sydney Community Garden tours, which is a fantastic opportunity to learn and get inspired. My partner and I have been fortunate to join one of the groups on Sunday May 2, 2010.

How it all began…

The tour started with all of us meeting up at Greg Hewish Memorial Community Garden, located on the corner of Ogden Lane and Marriott Street in Redfern. As soon as we walked in, we felt a sense of order and strict alignment at this Community Garden. It utilises raised beds to cater to people with handicaps, and it is thoughtfully divided by graveled paths and brick walls.

Here we began our learning as well. First, we met Russ Grayson who fed us loads of useful information throughout the tour (this information is making its way slowly to this website). We walked around and took some photos, and shortly after loaded into a 21-seatter bus, sponsored by the City of Sydney.

Here we also met Annie Walker, who is the City of Sydney liaison on the subject of Community Gardens. She is wonderful and super pleasant to talk to, and I do believe this tour is largely her achievement. Thank you!

Bountiful harvest
Continue reading Behind the fence of Sydney’s Community Gardens