Friday, December 6, 2013

Permaculture: Geoff Lawton at TEDxAjman

Backyard Permaculture: Starting at home...

Remember, we can write recipes and show you how to save money and waste, but we cannot guarantee that you will. You must take responsibility for your own use and budget. We try to motivate and help you! Your Life is up to you.

Monday, October 14, 2013

How much mulch is too much?

How much mulch is too much is often asked.
Mulch is marvelous but it can cause collar rot if it is too close to the trunk of hte tree or plant.
Keep a distance of at least 25 cms from the trunk of a tree.
The larger the trunk, the greater the distance. A mulch free zone equal to half the width of the tree trunk is a good guide.

Mulch which is too deep, can stop rain from seeping through!

Mulch should be no deeper than 10cms.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Here's a free Permaculture book

Download from here.
 written by April Sampson-Kelly (post grad Dip sci), a permaculture graduate under Bill Mollison 1993


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Permaculture Giants

Permaculture Giants

Picture: April Sampson-Kelly and Bill Mollison

Permaculture - concise
Write to us for a full file

Core tenets

The core tenets of permaculture are:
Care of the earth: Provision for all life systems to continue and multiply. This is the first principle, because without a healthy earth, humans cannot flourish.
  • Care of the people: Provision for people to access those resources necessary for their existence.
  • Return of Surplus: Reinvesting surpluses back into the system to provide for the first two ethics. This includes returning waste back into the system to recycle into usefulness.
Permaculture design emphasizes patterns of landscape, function, and species assemblies. Determines where these element should be placed such that it provides maximum benefit to the local environment. The central concept of permaculture is maximizing useful connections between components and synergy of the final design. The focus of permaculture, therefore, is not on each separate element, but rather on the relationships created among elements by the way they are placed together; the whole becoming greater than the sum of it's parts. Permaculture design therefore seeks to minimize waste, human labor, and energy input by building systems with maximal benefits between design elements to achieve a high level of synergy. Permaculture designs evolve over time by taking into account these relationships and elements and can become extremely complex systems that produce a high density of food and materials with minimal input.
Remember, we stand upon the shoulders of those who came before us.
Maya Angelou said…”We stand on the shoulders of those who came before us”. Isaac Newton said…”If I have seen further, it is only by standing on the shoulders of giants”.
Lets always give others credit for their work.



Mother of All R’s is “Redesign”

Here’s a dozen R’s and the most important is Redesignreject furnace bricks hold pizza trays ready for pizza oven Permaculture Visions

When researching and writing about waste reduction and the ‘classic 4 R’s’ focused on in the 90’s we realised the importance of a 5th R: Redesign.
Since then our wonderful students have suggested more. Lela Copeland, now one of our graduates in Hawaii, wrote about Re-use by modification (Retrofit). Permaculture North Sydney had more and there were 10 R’s to consider. Now Flavia Reis and Shane Moon (students in our face-to-faced course) and another student Ben Clarke have suggested a few more.
  • Refuse
  • Reduce
  • Redistribute (share) 
  • Re-use
  • Retrofit
  • Repair
  • Recycle
  • Refurbish
  • Redeem
  • Restore
  • Regenerate
  • Rebuild. 
  • Redesign


Redesign for durability, ease of maintenance and repair, and use of materials that are easily re-used and re-cycled without high energy input or toxic by-products. The concept of designing in parts called modules is a design feature that usually increases waste. However, if the modules are small enough, they can make repair easy (replacing just a steel blade or a brush head). Modules in many modern products such as white goods and cars are self-contained, and can usually only be opened when broken. If we design for common parts, sizes and materials with ingenious combinations and application then the design has a much greater capacity for re-use and repair. Few cars or even computers have common parts from one brand to another, this has often been to enhance the uniqueness of the product, ‘It’s different, better, sophisticated and new’. When consumers demand repair-ability, items will be promoted less on uniqueness and more on their common-ness or ‘standards’ and availability of parts.
Permaculture is about re-design. Clever design finds multiple functions and use for the waste, which is simply unused output [Mollison]. We can re-design our cities into self-reliant ‘villages’ and our home systems into responsible multi-functional productive spaces.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

How to protect your animals in a heat wave

here's the link.
sometimes animals need help, especially when they are fenced in and can't find their own solutions.
This is a very informative article.

Monday, September 30, 2013

about mulch

In response to someone's homework today I put this post up. Mulch – The good, the bad and the ugly Mulch, in the long term, for the garden or farm can never be bad. It is always useful to reduce evaporation, protect the soil and worms from erosion and increase your store of organic material. In the short term, throwing mulch on without considering the effect can result in undesired effects. If you apply: the mulch too thinly – this can result in a light cover that encourages existing plants and seeds to thrive (they are simply ‘top dressing’ the weeds). fresh grass clippings, pulled weeds or prunings you might find that it contained grass seed or that some plants resprout where you don’t want them. material that has not yet decomposed, you might start to witness nitrogen draw-down (when the leaves of plants near the mulch begin to turn yellow). It is wise to put a good layer of compost or aged urine or manure underneath the top layer of ‘green’ material. mounds of fresh clippings that can generate heat and burn the plants below (this can be handy if you are wanting to burn out an area). Usually it is wise to keep the mulch in a heap until it has stopped burning (the burning kills weed seed within the heap too, so it is handy) then apply the mulch when it has cooled. hair for mulch hair as mulch heavy mulch full of naturally occurring allelopathic chemicals (such as eucalytpus) – this will not be kind to any tender, unaccustomed plants. Basically, be aware that non-natives may not like native mulches. putting mulch too close to the trunks of your trees can kill them. They can develop collar rot where the trunk suffocates, gets too wet and rots away. Some materials do not decompose quickly (hair, old wool, re-used cotton) so are good long term protection. The ideal mulch is living mulch which replenishes itself year after year. This mulch can be edible such as sweet potato (kumura). April Sampson-Kelly

Tuesday, September 17, 2013 graduate list

I've deleted the list of graduates from this blog. If you want to confirm your certification with Permaculturevisions please go to and write to contact us. All the best!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Learn something every day!

update . When the google spiders lost their way,apparently it was caused by an open security tab in wordpress. The google search said robot.txt file was the problem. What it didnt say was that a robot.txt is only used to hide a webpage, not to show it. learn something every day. all's fixed now. So back to basics. How does your garden grow?

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Somehow today 5.8.13 has been hacked or lost its way or the little google spiders cant find it. . but if you go to . our page will come up with the "embarrassing" message. However if you click on the top menu bar it will take you to our various pages.. . we also have www. and which point to the .com page, so you can still find us you can email us on sampsms at ozemail dot or april at

Wednesday, June 12, 2013