It’s the biggest hectare I have ever seen!
David Holmgren’s farm “Melliodora” is located in Daylesford, VIC. It covers mere 2.5 acres, yet it took us 5 hours (!) to briefly discuss its design and features. David’s house is open for tours once a month, and is well worth it. The tour can be booked on his website, come and see for yourself, if you like. Or check out some photos and facts below :)
Five most memorable David Holmgren quotes:
- “Orchard should pay the rates on the house.”
- “People that eat from the land adapt deficiencies of that land.”
- “Plants are either spiky OR poisonouse, but rarely both.” This was said about Gorse, which is a ‘noxious weed’ in Victoria, but is actually edible to goats.
- “Corporations are immune to moral influences.”
- “Passive solar – active humans.” In a passive solar house, when temperatures outside are higher than inside, active humans need to go around and open every vent possible. And vice versa.
Other memorable facts:
- David’s mud-brick house is 25 years old
- The cost to build the house (25 years ago) was roughly $80K
- David and his family burn about 5 to 7 tons of wood each year, which covers all the cooking, hot water, heating and food-preservation fires
- The main source of heat in a passive solar house is the greenhouse
- Mud bricks coated with linseed oil are highly water resistant
- On compost: what goes into the compost pile determines the type of plants that will grow out of it. Woody compost makes woody plants. Soft compost materials rot into soft plants food.
4 replies on “David Holmgren’s House Tour”
very nice i wish i have much more things learn from you
[…] give you a taste, here’s the photos and account from one happy tour participant in our March tours (Photos in this post are from the Permacultured […]
I loved the grapes too. I saved some seeds, but not sure they will grow into the same variety, ha. Hey, you could probably ask David for a cutting!
I was on this tour with you on the weekend, but only did the garden tour in the afternoon.
I found his comments about excessive potassium in our ancient soils and their influence on overly woody annuals a great insight, as well as the notes you’ve listed above. Those grapes were A-MAZ-ING. Literally the most complex flavour of any grape I’ve had. Definitely planting some as soon as I source the same variety.