E-News - AUGUST 2019
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David Holmgren is coming to WA!


ONLY A FEW HOURS TO GO! Until the PermacultureWest Retrosuburbia Roadshow with David Holmgren kicks off, Celebrating 40 Years of Permaculture in Western Australia.


PermacultureWest invites you to inspire and arm yourself with ideas and knowledge to live with lower environmental impact in our modern suburban landscape.

‘Aussie Street’ explores the story of four adjacent suburban homes responding to the effects of our changing environment and climate crises.

There will be lots of time for questions as well as sales and signing of David’s book Retrosuburbia: the downshifters guide to a resilient future.

At this Retrosuburbia event, Holmgren will advance Permaculture ideas as a creative framework for applying vital retrofits to our homes, gardens and, most fundamentally, our behaviours. David will take us back through the decades of our lived history in the streets where the quarter acre hosted the Aussie post war dream, through the decades of of rising affluence and additions, aging and infill, permaculture inspired retrofit and on, through a gritty but inspiring and realistic transformation in the Great Depression of the 2020s.

Aussie Street is a permaculture soap opera, made real by masterful storytelling that sounds a warning and clarion call for direct action on the home front. The presentation is also a window into the rich palette of design solutions and tips that Holmgren has explored in in his latest opus, Retrosuburbia; the downshifters guide to a resilient future.
Come and be entertained, inspired and challenged by one of Australia’s unsung heroes.

Ticket prices include catering and the chance to engage and be inspired by one of our greatest Permaculture idols.


At each regional event there will be an array of very unique and locally created community engagement activities,  immersive collective game experiences, market stalls, music, food, and overall festive fun.  The local and regional groups we are working with have created their own tailor made event - so you can attend multiple events and experience something different at each one, celebrating the diversity that Permaculture brings to our communities.

David Holmgren is best known as the co-originator of the permaculture concept following the publication of "Permaculture One" in 1978. David is globally recognised as a leading ecological thinker, teacher, respected writer and thought-provoking speaker promoting permaculture lifestyle as a realistic, attractive and powerful alternative to dependent consumerism. As well as ongoing home and teaching involvements in the practical side of permaculture, David is passionate about the philosophical and conceptual foundations for sustainability that are highlighted in his writing and independent publishing. His writings over those three decades span a diversity of subjects and issues but always illuminating another aspect of permaculture thinking. Key publications include Permaculture: Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability (2002) and Future Scenarios: How Communities Can Adapt To Peak Oil and Climate Change (2009) and most recently, RetroSuburbia; the downshifter guide to a resilient future (2018). At home, David lives with his partner Su Dennett on their permaculture property and demonstration site, Melliodora in Hepburn, Victoria.
Nyoongar country spans from Leeman in the northwest to beyond Cape Arid in the southeast, in the southwest of Australia. The Nyoongar calendar includes six seasons.

DJILBA - Season of Conception
Transitional time of the year. Flowers starting.

First Spring ~ August - September

The lifestyle for the Nyoongar communities during Djilba

Djilba season is a time to look for the yellow and cream flowers starting en mass.

Djilba is a transitional time of the year, with some very cold and clear days combining with warmer, rainy and windy days mixing with the occasional sunny day or two.

This is the start of the massive flowering explosion that happens in the South West. This starts with the yellow flowering plants such as the Acacias. Also colours that are around at this time of year are creams, combined with some vivid and striking blues.

Traditionally, the main food sources included many of the land based grazing animals as in the season before. These included the Yongar (kangaroo), the Waitj (emu) and the Koomal (possum).

As the days start to warm up, we start to see and hear the first of the new borns with their proud parent out and about providing them food, guiding them through foraging tasks and protecting their family units from much bigger animals, including people.

The woodland birds will still be nest bound, hence the swooping protective behavior of the Koolbardi (Magpie) starts to ramp up and if watched closely, so to do the Djidi Djidi (Willy Wag Tails) and the Chuck-a-luck (Wattle Birds) to name a couple of others.

As the season progresses and the temperatures continue to rise, we'll start to see the flower stalks of the Balgas (Grass Trees) emerging in preparation for the coming Kambarang season.

Read more here

This beautiful artwork was sourced from the MercyCare website: here

Principle #2
Catch & Store Energy

“ Make hay while the suns shines” 

By developing systems that collect resources when they are abundant, we can use them in times of need.

This icon for this design principle represents energy being stored in a container for use later on, while the proverb “make hay while the sun shines” reminds us that we have a limited time to catch and store energy.

This month's Permaculture Principle is summarised beautifully by the Formidable Vegetable Sound System's tune......

Energy <--Listen free here!!! 

Harvesting the flowers

Warré beekeeping allows for surplus honeycomb, collected and stored by honey-bees, to be carefully harvested without disturbing the colony. Cut, crushed and stored in jars, this surplus energy is the goodness of thousands of local flowers made accessible. This rich food can be stored indefinitely and used as a sweetener, in fermented drinks or as a medicine. The remaining wax can be used for sealing inoculated mushroom logs, making skin creams, lip balm or candles.


(Sourced Information & Photograph): Website: Permaculture Principles.   --> link Photo taken by Kirsten Bradley from the book Milkwood: Real skills for down-to-earth living.

Cultivating a micro-climate for change

Juan Anton built his greenhouse using bamboo and rocks collected from his property. The sun facing wall stores heat during the day and releases it during the cool nights, preventing frost. The water tank and containers act in much the same way, allowing him to grow tropical plants in the Mediterranean climate. Juan shares much of what he has grown and learnt at his edible forest with dozens of visitors who stay over for group discussions that can last for several days.

(Sourced Information & Photograph): Website: Permaculture Principles.   --> link Photo contributed by Hélène Legay

Heat people not the space

Thermal mass can be heated by the sun or on demand using systems like this rocket mass heater. The masonry holds hundreds of times more heat than air, storing it for longer, and releasing it at safe temperatures to keep people warm. This design incorporates a rocket stove and flue running through the masonry. Careful design and construction ensures that the small amount of fuel used is burnt hot and clean, while heat is soaked into the mass.

(Sourced Information & Photograph): Website: Permaculture Principles.   --> link  Photo by Calen Kennett, heater by Ernie and Erica Wisner

Old carob tree

Here the upper reaches of Brownhill Creek, in South Australia, supports a profusion of human food including; olives, grapes, prunes, figs and walnuts. This old carob tree, bent and broken, is offering shelter to new growth and still producing sweet pods. This ancient food tree helps to trap and hold sediment, draws from stream flow above and below ground, and uses sunlight to convert these resources into nutritious food.

(Sourced Information & Photograph): Website: Permaculture Principles. --> link   Photo and accompanying text contributed by Joel Catchlove

From Damon Gameau, the director of That Sugar Film, comes #2040film. An aspirational journey to discover what the future could look like if we simply embraced the best that exists today. This is the narrative the next generation needs to see, to aspire to, and to believe is possible. #WhatsYour2040 #JoinTheRegeneration Follow them on Twitter: Like them on Facebook: Follow them on Instagram:

If you have a great documentary worth sharing send your doco link to and we will feature it here in the next eNews Documentary Review.
Are you running a course or training program related to Permaculture in the coming months ahead?  Email Tamara at by the 15th day of the month to be included in our next issue.

Back from the Brink

How Australia's Landscape Can Be Saved

By: Peter Andrews

*Preview inside the book here

Peter Andrews is a racehorse breeder and farmer credited with remarkable success in converting degraded, salt-ravaged properties into fertile, drought-resistant pastures. His methods are so at odds with conventional scientific wisdom that for 30 years he has been dismissed and ridiculed as a madman. He has faced bankruptcy and family break-up. But now, on the brink of ecological disaster, leading politicians, international scientists and businessmen are beating a path to his door as they grapple with how best to alleviate the affects of drought on the Australian landscape. 

Described as a man who reads and understands the Australian landscape better than most scientists, supporters of Peter Andrews claim he has done what no scientist ever thought to do - he has restored streams and wetlands to the way they were before European settlement interfered with them. the startling results of his natural sequence farming are said to have been achieved very cheaply, simply and quickly. 

About the Author

Peter Andrews is an Australian race horse breeder and grazier from Bylong in the Upper Hunter Valley of New South Wales. 

He is the inventor of the Natural Sequence Farming method. He is acknowledged as having converted his degraded high-salinity land at Tarwyn Park into a fertile, drought-resistant estate. His techniques run counter to prevailing accepted practices. Peter Andrews is also the author of a best selling book on his methods, entitled Back from the Brink: How Australia's Landscape Can Be Saved. He also has written a book called Beyond the Brink that further explains his theories about water movement in the Australian landscape with the additional subjects of global warming and GMO usage and how this effects soil and the environment.

PIP Magazine - Issue #14 - Available NOW!

Issue 14 is the waste-free issue of Pip Magazine. They have articles on reducing waste in the kitchen, how to keep waste-free pets and how to reduce the waste of our most precious resource, water. The whale on the cover represents the animals that will benefit from us choosing to reduce waste in our lives.

PIP also have lots of info about growing food including how to grow food that is nutrient dense, a guide to growing potatoes and a feature on some great herbal teas you can grow yourself.

PIP look at environmental guilt and how to manage it and we also get back to basics and go through Bill Mollison’s permaculture principles explaining them and how to implement them into your life. And for those who are a bit crafty, PIP have some patterns for winter woollen knits and crochets.

All this and much more in issue 14 of Pip Magazine!

You can get a cheeky 10% discount on all new PIP Magazine subscriptions, just use the voucher PCWEST10 at check out! 

Pip Podcast #22 Waste Not with Erin Rhoads (The Rogue Ginger)

In this podcast PIP speak with Erin Rhoads (The Rogue Ginger), author of the wonderful book, Waste Not. They discuss the war on waste and the impact of our waste on the world. They explore solutions and the benefits of pursuing a waste free life.

Erin’s website The Rogue Ginger, details her personal journey to live plastic and waste free. She is a speaker, consultant and founder of Zero Waste Victoria and Plastic Bag Free Victoria. Her first book Waste Not: Make a big difference by throwing away less was released July 2018.
Erin lives with her husband and son in Melbourne.

If you too want to live with less waste, why not join the Pip Plastic Free July Challenge and receive weekly emails for the month of July with tips and tricks about how to use less plastic. Sign up here.

Useful links:
The Rogue Ginger –
War on Waste –
Blue Planet –


Well we would LOVE LOVE LOVE! to hear from you!  

And! Your input into this very special creative writing podcast workshop is going to allow us to bring together the story time, the history and journeys of West Australian's who have been involved in Permaculture over the last 40 years.  Even if you were in WA and you moved to acreage in Tassie or have been travelling the world in search of Permaculture bliss, inspiration and contribution, we would love to hear from you and have you contribute to this very special compilation of Permaculture History!

This very special opportunity is thanks to Linda and Donna, who will take you through this creative writing podcast step by step, uncovering your Permaculture journey.  So make a cup of tea, grab some paper and a pen and enjoy what unfolds for you...

Know of a great workshop coming up? Or a permablitz near your place? Is your garden looking fabulous or are you’re just bursting to share photos of your community or school garden? Would you like to introduce your Permaculture business? Would you like to connect with local community gardens in your area?  Let us know about it!

And! Your input is what really makes this monthly eNews special and relevant to local readers here in Western Australia. Plus! It helps us showcase all the great stuff we’ve got going on to readers from other parts of the world too. 

So! Don't be shy! Send your updates, sharing or questions today:
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