Monday, 10 April 2017

A Peek into Permaculture: Producing Food at Home

There is something quite wonderful about a garden that grows food. For me, it is a joy that is made tangible in the:

*   "tucking in" of seeds full of potential;
*   tiny seedlings that emerge in nourishing soils;
*   edible greens, fattening pods, ripening fruits and expanding tubers;
*   baskets laden with food harvested not far from our very own back door; 
*   making of meals using some of our very own produce ...
&  it's in the sharing of excess with family, friends, neighbours and strangers.

Ripening mandarins on our tree beginning to blush orange.

But growing food in our own garden is so much more than that. It is about:

*   locally grown goodness (as local as it gets);
*   healthy food produced without chemicals;
*   fresh food tasted and cooked and appreciated just minutes after it's been harvested;
*   precious seeds saved and shared ...
&  it's about a measure of self-reliance.

Fresh, young silverbeet growing happily among the flowers.

I have not read much of the work of Bill Mollison, co-originator of Permaculture along with David Holmgren, but these wise words of his were echoing in my mind as I planted the first of this Autumn's seedlings:

"The greatest change we need to make is from consumption to production,
even if on a small scale in our own gardens ..."

Just planted ... Perpetual Spinach, Tuscan Kale and Silverbeet seedlings in my garden.

The planting out of seedlings, a seemingly simple act of gardening, is so much more than that.  Perhaps, that is why growing some of our own food fills me with such happiness.

Do you grow some of your own food at home too? 



  1. I am sitting here nodding my head in agreement with all of your points. I'm big on the sharing as well. I swap produce with Mum and Dad and sometimes some of my produce goes to neighbours of ours and also my parents. Sometimes Mum will come over with a bag of lemons from a neighbour whom I've known most of my life. It is a great feeling.

    The health benefits of being in the sun, dirt, slowing down and eating chemical free produce from your very own backyard. I read an interesting book recently called Eat Dirt by Dr Josh Axe and one of the many things he talks about is eating bits of dirt from your own yard. Bits which may still be on your veggies or even by touching the dirt. A fantastic book.

    Your mandarins are looking good. My daughter loves mandarin season.

    Have a great day and I look forward to seeing your garden grow.


    1. I will have to have a look for that book, Kylie, as it sounds like one I'd enjoy reading.

      I love mandarin season too. That wonderful time when you can pluck a ripe mandarin off the tree, sit down on the grass nearby, eat all that wonderful and juicy goodness and put the peel straight into the compost. Magic!

      Have a lovely day too.

    2. Oh and let's not forget the smell of freshly peeled mandarin.

  2. I grow a little bit of food at home, I'd love to have the time and know how to grow more...maybe one day. We are heading off for 5 days camping (YAY) but when we get back I plan to put in the winter veg garden, something to look forward to indeed!

    1. Enjoy your camping trip, Cheryl. Hopefully, your winter veg garden will take off after you plant it out and you'll be eating lots of home grown goodness before too long. Meg:)

  3. Being able to grow mandarins sounds wonderful from where I'm sat (Chilly Suffolk UK morning) but maybe growers will be able to breed trees for our climate one day, after all a few years back we couldn't grow apricots and peaches but now trees suitable for the UK are available

    1. We've been enjoying cooler Autumn mornings here, Sue, after a very long and hot Summer. Not as cold as the UK though, I expect. I think getting to know and then selecting plants that grow well in your region/climate is one of the keys to creating a thriving garden and producing food abundantly. Meg:)

  4. Oh your little seedlings look so cute tucked up in their sugar cane mulch blanket. Sometimes I think that what I get out of my garden is very little compared to the effort I put in, but then again it is not just monetary gain we get from the garden, it is so much more.

  5. Sometimes I too think that the inputs are more than the outputs but then I don't think there's a price you can put on contentment. When I'm out in the garden with the warm sun on my shoulders, bare feet on the grass, hands in the soil, some food growing here and there, bees in the flowers ... there's no place I'd rather be. Meg:)

  6. Meg, our citrus fruit is still green. We have oranges and a huge mandarin tree. I have planted some Silverbeet seedlings as I thought the Perpetual Spinach from last year would come up after all the rain but not so. I am way behind with planting this year and still have heaps of weeds to pull out after the wet weather.

    1. I'm doing a little planting each day, Chel. I put snow peas and lettuce in yesterday along with some alyssum for the bees. I'm really keen to get some more calendula growing too as I want to harvest and dry the petals. Wouldn't it be lovely if weeds pulled themselves out. My strategy for weeds is crowding them out. Meg:)

  7. I love the flowers and the veggies all in together. So pretty and so practical.