Michelle Calleja from 3000acres on biophilic design
Recently I (Michelle) attended a lecture on biophilia by Dr Neil de Wet at the Melbourne School of Design. If the concept is new to you (as it was me), biophilia is the innate human tendency to seek connections with nature. Or, more simply put, a love of living things!
This concept is intuitively relatable to urban dwellers as we find ourselves seeking out every available crumb of nature in our daily lives. However, as our cities grow more dense and urban, our contemporary daily experiences of place are at threat of becoming increasingly disconnected from nature.
The intent of biophilic design is to restore or weave nature back into places as a kind of antidote to urban living. As described by Dr de Wet, this ‘urban greening’ employs a diverse range of passive and active interventions or ‘patterns’ to connect people with nature, place and one another. The aimed-for restorative side effects are improved natural environments, and better health and wellbeing for people and the communities (both human and little critters) that inhabit them.
So, what is the role of urban food production in biophilic design? It was interesting to learn that urban food growing is an important component of biophilic design’s multilayered approach given its ability to connect people to local, seasonal foods while supporting active engagement with nature, living organisms, and community.
If we measure our cities and the places we inhabit by their biophilic qualities, then urban food growing sits comfortably at the ‘nature loving’ end of the biophilic design spectrum.
Read more issues analysed by the people from 3000acres.
Another new food swap
Heidelberg Food Swap. 4th Saturday of each month, 10-11am (except for the inaugural swap on this coming Saturday – 23rd November – which is 11am-midday, after the composting workshop). At St Johns Riverside Community Garden, St Johns Anglican Church, 1 Burgundy Street, Heidelberg, 3084. Organised by Transition Warringal. Congratulations to Penny and Christine for making this happen.
That brings the total number of local food swaps listed on our website to 34.
Every newsletter needs a good picture
Some cranky capsicums.
Some more collectors of bee swarms
Claire Smith; 0425 700 280; based in Mooroolbark; anywhere from Box Hill to Lilydale; won’t climb ladders.
Peter Dyer; 0425 873 555; based in Surrey Hills; anywhere from Abbotsford to Templestowe; both bees and swarms.
Yvonne Ashby, 0409 225 774, based in Yallambie; anywhere within a 20km range.
Thanks for writing in Claire, Peter and Yvonne!
That brings the total number of local bee swarm collectors listed on our website to 22.
Yvonne has also drawn my attention to a website called Swarm Patrol, where you can report a bee swarm and it will automatically notify the three nearest bee swarm collectors who are registered with the website.
Do you know?
Any resources for recycling corks? Asked by Vicki Jordan. Email me and I’ll pass your email on to Vicki.
Do you know of any classes on maintaining goats or any farms or local sites that provide workshops? Asked by Amanda Gutierrez. Email me and I’ll pass your email on to Amanda.
It would be good to have a regular do you know? section in the newsletter. Is there anything you would like to know? Email me.
Do you want?
Do you want to harvest, and then take away, some olives from a tree in Brunswick? Stefan, whose tree it is, says that it has lots of olives still on it and but that he can’t eat any more! Presumably we are discussing olives from last season whose picking is therefore overdue. If potentially interested, email me and I’ll put you in contact with Stefan.
Corrections and clarifications
Nonna & Mum’s homestyle cooking class at the Furland Club in Thornbury has been moved to Thursday, 21st November, 7.30-10.30pm (from 28th November). The cost will be $20. After the cooking class, there will be a Christmas party and tastings. Thanks for the heads up, Lily Angel!
Felicity Gordon is the new coordinator of the Doncaster Hill Conmmunity Garden.
Healthy D’Lights, from Epping, make vegan and gluten free bliss balls. You can now buy their bliss balls online.
Reground’s minimum delivery quantity of spent coffee grounds appears to have gone up to 12 wheelie bins (roughly a van load) and they currently have a waiting list of 2+ months. Thanks for the update, Tracey Bjorksten.
State Government Small-Scale and Craft grants
The Small-Scale and Craft Program is a four-year program that that aims to support small-scale and craft food & beverage producers looking to scale-up operations, diversify product lines and expand outreach. Grants range from $25K to $200K. Applications for the first round of grants close 6th December and applications for the second round close 31st December. Read more and apply.
‘Crowd harvest’ – seeds for Christmas
During the first half of December, send your seeds to one of the not-for profit organisations listed below, each of whom employs a horticulturalist who will germinate, store or distribute the seeds to those facing food insecurity. Please package the seeds in individual and labelled packages. Open pollinated seeds if possible. Read this Facebook post for more information. DIVRS in Preston, Carrington Health (ask for Alex Salmon) in Box Hill or STREAT in Collingwood.
Welcome to Eltham’s baklava drive
Help Welcome to Eltham raise funds to support their work with refugees and people seeking asylum by buying some baklava. $10 for 10 pieces or $16 for 16 pieces. Made by Abla’s Patisserie in Preston. Pick up in Eltham on Tuesday, 3rd December or on Wednesday, 18th December. Read more and purchase.
Robin on broad beans
Read Robin’s short article from last week’s Leader newspaper.
Which link was clicked most times in the last newsletter?
The recycling drop off points for prescription glasses.
Joke of the week
Submitted by Lyn Richards:
Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
Philosophy is wondering if a bloody mary counts as a smoothie.
Read more jokes.
New events – not cooking
What: You are invited to a hands-on tomato training session at the KABUU urban farm. The session will include adding some additional purlins to the frames of the poly tunnels above each row of tomatoes, attaching strings and training the already-established tomatoes up the strings, while pinching out unwanted growth. You will learn about growing vegetables in poly tunnels, how to maximise the productivity of tomatoes in small spaces, and how to optimise the form of the plants.
Composting workshop: Saturday, 30th November, 9.30am-1.30pm; Brunswick Neighbourhood House.
What: This workshop will help provide you with all the information you need to set up and maintain a healthy compost bin, worm farm and Bokashi system at home.
Bookings: by phone (9386 9418).
What: Go along to hear about the project in its early stages, meet likeminded people and have a walk around the site. Snacks and refreshments provided. A donation in exchange for your attendance would be appreciated ~ all donations will go to support the trees. Read their return brief.
Bookings: Either check ‘going’ on the Facebook event page or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wicking bed workshop: Saturday, 7th December, 10am-midday; Brunswick Neighbourhood House.
What: Very Edible Gardens will teach you everything you need to know to make your very own wicking beds at home.
Bookings: by phone (9386 9418) or email (email@example.com).
What: Create a Christmas gift set of three wraps of various sizes with Ben from Ben’s Bees using his own locally made beeswax. Also, if you have well loved wraps at home that are looking a bit tired, bring them along and Ben will teach you how to give them a second life.
Cost: $35 (includes all materials).
Bookings: by phone (9870 2602).
What: NERP and Edible Hub, Hurstbridge are holding a hands-on workshop to create a no-dig lasagne bed for a future food forest at the Hurstbridge Hub. Learn about the design principles behind the proposed garden, the lasagne method of bed preparation, and techniques to improve water capture and retention in the garden. The workshop will start with a presentation and briefing over a cuppa and then move outside for the hands-on activity. Click here to read about the garden.
Note that most organisations are not yet advertising any of their 2020 events. Those that are known to us can be found on our website non-cooking calendar.
New events – cooking
What: Join Jess, from Norma Rose Cakes to make 12 cupcakes with 4 different designs to take home. Learn various piping techniques including small stars, fine line and large swirls. Create white Christmas tree decoration, snow icing and how to place decorations.
Note that most organisations are not yet advertising any of their 2020 events. Those that are known to us can be found on our website cooking calendar.
Summary of upcoming events – not cooking
Over the next week
- Launch of the Whittlesea Food Collective: Wednesday, 20th November, 4-6pm; Epping.
- Build DIY food waste solutions: Wednesday, 20th November, 6-7.30pm; Brunswick East.
- Thrifty gardening: Wednesday, 20th November, 7-9pm; Manningham Civic Centre.
- Tea anyone? Christmas craft and easy edible gifts with Carol: Thursday, 21st November, 10.30am-midday; Lilydale Library.
- Tomato planting: Thursday, 21st November, 11am-midday; Diamond Valley Library.
- Healthy productive compost and worms: Thursday, 21st November, 6.30-9pm; Bulleen Art and Garden.
- Kevin Heinze GROW 40th anniversary birthday party: Thursday, 21st November, starting at 7pm; Doncaster.
- Beeswax wraps: Friday, 22nd November, 6-8pm; Surrey Hills.
- Intermediate fluid art workshop – cheeseboard and coasters: Saturday, 23rd November, 9.30-11.30am; Yarra Glen.
- Composting workshop: Saturday, 23rd November, 10-11am; St Johns Riverside Community Garden, Heidelberg.
- Balcony garden workshop: Saturday, 23rd November, 10-11.30am; Collingwood.
- Drawing and watercolour workshop in an edible garden: Saturday, 23rd November, 10.30am-12.30pm; Murundaka, Heidelberg Heights.
- Balcony garden workshop: Saturday, 23rd November, 2-3.30pm; Collingwood.
- Home composting workshop: Saturday, 23rd November, 2-4.30pm; Edendale.
- Beekeeping workshop: Saturday, 23rd November, 2-4.30pm; Bee Sustainable, Brunswick East.
- Eikellegimaa NGO evening and film screening: Saturday, 23rd November, 5-8pm; Edendale.
- Medicinal gardening (two day): Saturday, 23rd November and Sunday, 24th November, both 10am-3.30pm; Joe’s Market Garden, Coburg.
- Edible Forest open day: Sunday, 24th November, 11am-4pm; Dixons Creek.
- Tomato training session at KABUU: Sunday, 24th November, 1-5pm; Research.
- Introduction to composting and worm farming: Monday, 25th November, 7-9pm; Lilydale.
- Growing fruit trees: Wednesday, 27th November, 7-9pm; Manningham Civic Centre.
Over the next month
- The art of espalier: Thursday, 28th November, 6.30-9pm; Bulleen Art and Garden.
- Composting workshop: Saturday, 30th November, 9.30am-1.30pm; Brunswick Neighbourhood House.
- Demonstrating effective blackberry control techniques: Saturday, 30th November, 10-midday; Smiths Gully.
- Bees wax wraps: Saturday, 30th November, 10am-midday; Mount Evelyn.
- Edible weeds walk: Saturday, 30th November, 10.30am-12.30pm; Brunswick East.
- Edible weeds walk: Saturday, 30th November, 1.30-3.30pm; Brunswick East.
- Say hello to the Melbourne Arboretum: Sunday, 1st December, 11am-1pm; Mernda.
- The joy of backyard chooks: Thursday, 5th December, 6.30-9pm; Bulleen Art and Garden.
- Native plants for food and medicine: Saturday, 7th December, 9.30am-12.30pm; Bulleen Art and Garden.
- Wicking bed workshop: Saturday, 7th December, 10am-midday; Brunswick Neighbourhood House.
- Tomatoes and more – tomatoes in your edible garden: Saturday, 7th December, 2-3.30pm; Bee Sustainable, Brunswick East.
- Christmas beeswax wrap gift and wrap rejuvenation: Saturday, 7th December, 2-4pm; Central Ringwood Community Centre.
- Summer fruit tree maintenance: Sunday, 8th December, 9.30am-12.30pm; Bulleen Art and Garden.
- Lasagne garden to food forest workshop: Sunday, 8th December, 10am-1pm; Edible Hub, Hurstbridge.
- Sustainable gardening: Thursday, 12th December, 11.30am-12.30pm; Fawkner Library.
- Garlic braiding with Farmer Incubator: Saturday, 14th December, 10am-midday; Yarrambat.
- Bee hive tour: Saturday, 14th December, 10.30am-12.30pm; Yarrambat.
Summary of upcoming events – cooking
Over the next week
- Cooking master class – ‘a Mediterranean Christmas’: Thursday, 21st November, 7-9pm; Gourmet Living, Templestowe.
- Cooking master class – ‘a Mediterranean Christmas’: Friday, 22nd November, 7-9pm; Gourmet Living, Templestowe.
- Sourdough bread making with Nadine Kemp: Saturday, 23rd November, 10am-2.30pm; Lower Templestowe.
- Thermomix made with love: Saturday, 23rd November, midday-2pm; Chirnside Park.
- How to grow and how to cook Spring/Summer Asian vegetable workshop: Sunday, 24th November, 11am-1.30pm; Murundaka, Heidelberg Heights.
- Wild fermentation class (pickling and sauerkraut): Tuesday, 26th November, 2-4.30pm; Dixons Creek.
Over the next month
- Cooking master class – ‘Christmas faves’: Thursday, 28th November, 7-9pm; Gourmet Living, Templestowe.
- Dairy and kombucha fermentation class: Friday, 29th November, 11am-12.30pm; Dixons Creek.
- Mediterranean Summer feast: Friday, 29th November, 6-8pm; Surrey Hills.
- Cook Indian by the creek: Friday, 29th November, 6.30-8.30pm; Diamond Creek.
- Fermented beverages: Saturday, 30th November, 10am-midday; CERES, Brunswick East.
- Amazake making and cooking: Saturday, 30th November, 11am-1.30pm; Preston.
- Sourdough bread and pumpkin damper making: Saturday, 30th November, 1.30-2.30pm; Macleod Organic Community Garden.
- Vegan cheese making with Nase Supplitt: Sunday, 1st December, 10am-3pm; CERES, Brunswick East.
- Shio koji making and cooking: Sunday, 1st December, 11am-1.30pm; Preston.
- No Waste Cook Club: Saturday, 7th December, 10am-midday; Fitzroy North.
- Wild fermentation class (pickling and sauerkraut): Saturday, 7th December, 10am-12.30pm; Dixons Creek.
- Truffle workshop at Ratio Cocoa Roasters: Saturday, 7th December, 10.30am-midday; Fawkner Library.
- Fermentation veg ferments and cultured condiments: Sunday, 8th December, 10am-2pm; CERES, Brunswick East.
- Creative Chinese vegetarian cooking: Sunday, 8th December, 1.30-3pm; Watsonia Library.
- Christmas gingerbread house demonstration: Monday, 9th December, 10.30-11.30am; Watsonia Library.
- Cookie cake and fondant cookies with Emelia Jackson: Tuesday, 10th December, 7-9pm; Gourmet Living, Templestowe.
- Stress free Christmas cooking (thermomix): Tuesday, 10th December, 7.30-9pm; Kilsyth.
- Cookie cake and fondant cookies with Emelia Jackson: Wednesday, 11th December, 7-9pm; Gourmet Living, Templestowe.
- Christmas hors d’oeuvres: Friday, 13th December, 10.30-11.30am; Eltham Library.
- Gingerbread house workshop: Saturday, 14th December, 9.30am-midday; Kinglake.
- Preserving the season’s harvest: Saturday, 14th December, 10am-2pm; CERES, Brunswick East.
- Christmas cupcake decorating workshop: Saturday, 14th December, 1-3pm; Chirnside Park.
View the complete calendar of upcoming events.