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Inter alia, this picture includes my current favourite veggie for home growing: golden frills, which is a variety of mustard greens. (posted April 5 2017)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
From the Colossal website, have a look at their recent article on carved food. (posted March 29 2017)

10 benefits of DIY food is the latest blog entry by Lucinda Flynn of Hurstbridge-based Going Green Solutions. (posted March 22 2017)

Three ways to save tomato seeds: fermenting, drying and burying. (posted March 1 2017)

How do we keep gardening in the face of a changing climate?. (posted March 1 2017)

Plant nutrients explained: have a look at this article from the Sustainable Gardening Australia website. It explains the roles of not only N, P and K, but also Ca, Mg, S, Fe, Mn, B, Mo, Cu and Zn. (posted February 1 2017)

Everything you wanted to know about GM crops but were afraid to ask: One of the unexpected byproducts of the Donald Trump campaign for President is that I have started reading the New York Times and it is an interesting read, with substantive analysis on many issues. Click here to read a recent article about GM crops. One of the things that the article says is: the whole point of engineering bug-resistant plants was to reduce insecticide use, and it did; by contrast, the whole point of engineering herbicide-resistant plants was to increase herbicide use, and it did. Not surprisingly, Monsanto sells herbicides but not insecticides. (posted November 2 2016)

10 tips for eating locally and cutting the energy used to produce your food. (posted October 26 2016)

daliSalvador Dali’s cookbook is being re-printed: Les Diners de Gala is exactly the sort of thing one might imagine Dali producing. See the reviews at Colossal and Brain Pickings. Buy the book. (posted October 5 2016)

Are coffee grounds actually helpful to growing veggies? See a paper evaluating a trial in Vietnam which concludes that coffee husks are a good addition to compost. Also, an article published by Sustainable Gardening Australia agrees re compost but warns against adding uncomposted coffee to the garden. (posted September 14 2016)

Meet and eat: characters made from fruit and veg – in pictures: just to demonstrate that this is a highbrow newsletter, have a look at this wonderful array of pictures. My favourite is probably Stephen (the rightmost one below), whilst my wife likes Albert (the leftmost one below). (posted August 3 2016)

An article on edible weeds by Doris Pozzi, author of Edible Weeds of Melbourne & Surrounds. (posted July 27 2016)

Mt Alexander Fruit Gardens newsletter: if you want to receive regular (weekly) newsletters about all aspects of growing fruit trees in Victoria, you might want to consider subscribing to the Mt Alexander Fruit Gardens newsletter (posted June 15 2016)

When is it time to harvest? Here is a plant-by-plant guide to help you decide when to harvest each fruit or vegetable. (posted June 29 2016)

4 simple ways to reduce food waste. (posted June 8 2016)

50 resources to help you become more self-sufficient: there are lots of tips and ideas within this article. (posted April 6 2016)

10 steps towards greener cooking and eating: both the Montmorency Community Group and Urban Shepherd posted a link to this article on Facebook. (posted April 6 2016)

How to make a self-watering pot: Carolyn Leach-Paholski, a regular at the monthly Box Hill South Urban Harvest swap, has created a great illustration of how to make a self-watering pot. It comprises 8 simple steps, which are numbered on the illustration as 1-2i-2ii-3i-3ii-4i-4ii-4iii. In summary, cut a plastic soft drink bottle in half, punch a hole in the lid and thread a length of string to wick water up to the soil. (posted February 24 2016)
self-watering pot          self-watering pot2

Wonky veggies: ‘Wonky’ veggies in the UK. Also ‘wonky’ veggies in Australia. If you want to know more, just google ‘wonky veggies’. (posted February 10 2016)

How to make seed pots from old newspapers: Sustainable Gardening Australia’s most popular Facebook link thus far in 2016. (posted February 10 2016)

Government announces new labelling system for Australian food: read about the planned, new labelling system on the ABC website. According to the article, the labels will initially be voluntary, but manufacturers will be forced to use them from next year if the states and territories agree to the proposal. (posted July 22 2015)

A classification scheme of local food business models. (posted June 10 2015)

15 bread recipes that are low-carb and gluten-free. (posted June 10 2015)

Bread – re-tracing the path to diversity: an article from the Sustainable Food Trust. The central question discussed is: how are some plant breeders, farmers, millers and bakers re-tracing the path to ancient, diverse grains that will see us eating healthier, tastier bread into the future? (posted June 3 2015)

France passes new law forbidding food waste: France has recently passed a law which bans grocery stores from throwing away unsold food. See, for example, an article on Treehugger which discusses the law. (posted June 3 2015)

France passes new law on green roofs: Something is obviously afoot in France as they also recently passed a law that requires new buildings in commercial zones to be partially covered in either plants or solar panels. See, for example, the article on TriplePundit. (posted June 3 2015)

Self-watering plant pots: a neat idea. (posted April 22 2015)

NY Times article on efficiency in the kitchen to reduce food waste. (posted April 22 2015)

Testing the pH of your soil: Milkwood has posted a comprehensive article on how to test and balance your soil’s pH. The difference between a pH of 6 and and a pH of 7 might not sound much but remember that it is a logarithmic scale. So, for example there is a tenfold difference in the number of hydrogen ions between pHs 6 and 7 and a hundredfold difference between pHs 6 and 8. (posted April 1 2015)

Around the world in 80 plants: This is a book to take you on an inspiring edible adventure, introducing author Stephen Barstow’s top 80 perennial vegetables. (posted November 5 2014)

Country of origin labelling: Australian vegetable growers support the Victorian Farmers’ Federation calling for authorities to tighten the law against incorrect labelling. Read more. (posted October 29 2014)

Australian agriculture must adapt to climate change.: Peanuts have moved north, tuna has moved east, wine has moved south, but sooner or later, Australia is going to run out of places to shift agricultural production to avoid the harsh effects of climate change. You can read more here. (posted October 22 2014)

The Future of Food: Read about this in the Age Good Food guide. (posted October 10 2014)

Dahr Jamail; Open source farming; a renaissance man tackles the food crisis: This is an interesting article, where Joe Breskin has increased vegetable yields in greenhouses by recycling heat from fans. (posted September 25 2014)

Nethercote Community funds its own market gardeners: This is an article about two ladies in NSW who have established a scheme to pay market gardeners to grow vegetables for the region’s farmers’ markets. (posted September 25 2014)

Climate change affecting plants: Are your plum and peach trees budding up already? Here is a story of changes noted in the Wodonga region and possible problems it can produce. (posted June 12 2014)

The Good Chocolate Guide provides a list of fair trade certified producers as well as UTZ and Rainforest Alliance certified. UTZ and Rainforest Alliance do not go as far as fairtrade certified products in working with communities to break the poverty cycle, but still may be worth considering. If you are looking for a very local stockist, especially with Easter coming up, Fair Trade Choc is available through Only Just in Monty. (posted April 3 2014)

Pretty looking sugar-free drinks from this site. (posted February 27 2014)

Collaborative consumption: Have you heard of this term? It seems to relate to much of our motivation and activities in the local food movement. Read more here. (posted February 27 2014)

Local food garden educator: Seila Hierk has been teaching adults and children about food gardening for several years, in and around Melbourne. It is great to read about him in the Herald Sun. (posted February 20 2014)

Aquaponics and more: In recent times more and more people have shown an interest in aquaponics, a combination of growing fish and vegetables in a supportive cycle. Here is an interesting story of a project on a community scale – Incredible Edible Aqua Garden. (posted November 21 2013)

Cooking the harvest: See Working up an appetite: dinner guests sow for their supper. (posted October 31 2013)

What’s wrong with our food?: The Age, Oct 21. (posted October 24 2013)

Paradise Lot, a book review: Useful information on how two guys created an abundant forest garden on degraded urban land, in a temperate climate. (posted October 24 2013)

World food diversity is decreasing: An ABC interview with Simran Sethi, environmental journalist. (posted October 10 2013)

Elisabet Sahtouris, fascinating interview: Elisabet Sahtouris is an evolution biologist, futurist, author and consultant. In her unique approach, called “Living Systems Design,” she applies the principles of biology and evolution to organizational development so that organizations may become more functional, healthy living systems, with increased resilience, stability, and cooperation. Heard on youtube. (posted October 3 2013)

Polyface Farm: Those of you who are fans of Joel Salatin may like to see these photos of his property and the fun that people were having. Our local equivalent of this style of farming is Taranaki Farm. (posted September 20 2013)

The love and peas revolution: Read about other street planter boxes around the world here: “…replacing geraniums and petunias in public areas with rhubarb, carrots, parsley, strawberries, and raspberries. As a result of all this effort, people not only enjoy eating fresh and locally produced food, but they also experience sustainability and science!” (posted September 20 2013)

Vegetable information cards: These cards are used in the Milkwood Market Gardening courses. These or similar cards would make a great resource for local home growers! (posted September 20 2013)

Transition: It is interesting to read that some people in government around the world are beginning to realise that Economic growth is an outdated model and are looking at the Transition model. Here is a story from Rob Hopkins about a recent conference in Paris. (posted September 5 2013)

Citrus gall wasp: Interesting article about this pest at SGA. (posted August 22 2013)

Worm wicking one year on: This is a great article by John Ashworth at the SGA site, on how a worm wicking bed has worked for him. (posted August 15 2013)

The Greens party have a plan to encourage more healthy food and sustainable food systems. (posted August 1 2013)

Should we ban “Shop Local”? Here is an interesting point of view. (posted July 18 2013)

Mushroom farming: Those of you who would love to grow mushrooms may like this story from Milkwood. (posted July 11 2013)

Food co-ops: For those interested in Food Co-ops, Russell Grayson’s analysis of several co-ops in Sydney near Randwick and Bondi, may be interesting. (posted July 4 2013)

Community food for all in Daylesford. (posted June 27 2013)

Food nutrition: How nutritious are our fruits and veg? Read about a study here. (posted June 27 2013)

Food miles: Read another viewpoint in The Guardian (posted May 31 2013)

Distribution costs: As we look more into the possibilities of developing local food systems, one issue that arises is distribution costs, in terms of both money and energy used. This site offers some interesting information. (posted May 9 2013)

Bhutan is the first country to go 100% organic. It “reminds us about the true lunacy of designating foods as ‘organic’ and ‘traditional’ in modern society. These Bhutan farmers are not growing magic beans or enchanted corn, they are growing real food. Actual food as it was grown for thousands of years.” (posted March 7 2013)

City of Vancouver seeks to make food systems central to every aspect of the city’s business. The City’s new food strategy depicts a high-density urban environment lush with edible landscaping, community vegetable gardens, green walls, rooftop greenhouses, farmers markets and thousands of green jobs based in a burgeoning local food economy. Part of the vision includes – 13 new farmers markets, for a total of 22; 1,300 new community garden plots, for a total of 5,000; Encourage commercial growing in urban spaces and create a business license category for farms; Encourage edible landscaping and food-bearing trees on boulevards and traffic circles. To read more of this great vision, click here. (posted March 1 2013)

How to really grow food in your backyard: For more than fifteen years, Asphyxia been growing food. For most of that time she has had limited success, and have been pretty baffled as to how an ordinary backyard can really produce enough food to feed a family. The past three years, however, she has made changes. Read more. (posted January 17 2013)

Lavender Tea: You may wish to try this tea (from www.traditional-foods.com/recipes/lavender-tea/). (posted November 22 2012)

Banana packaging. How ridiculous is our food system becoming? Here is a message from Permablitz Melbourne: “And lastly, how great to know that in this fast paced world where we’re all time poor, we no longer have to waste all that time peeling a banana; this time can now be spent unwrapping layers of plastic and disposing of the styrofoam instead. Much simpler! Oh dear…” (posted October 18 2012)

Milkwood says “If we want effective local food being grown in quantity, it’s time we start investing in and encouraging market gardeners to make this sort of thing happen, because that’s the only way we’ll actually get community-scale food… ” . Is anyone up for this project? (posted July 26 2012)

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