Nov 092016

More blueberries, more ABC Radio National and still the best cook in Nillumbik

For those of you who enjoyed Duang Tengtrirat’s award-winning story about blueberries and racism, I have a real treat for you. As part of the launch of ABC Radio National’s 2016 audio competition, Duang recorded a follow up story. The setting is one year later and Duang is again collecting blueberries. But this time her meeting is much more pleasant and heart warming. Listen to Duang’s follow up story. Or, if you want to listen to both stories plus ABC’s commentary on them, click here.

The best mural painter in Banyule

The Victorian Government has done a lot to help farmers’ markets and they recently gave Local Food Connect a grant to expand Eltham Farmers’ Market. The video competitions during September and October were funded by that grant. It has also funded the painting of a mural, which was put up last week in the corner of the car park where the market happens. The painter of the mural, Felicity Gordon is a well-known, local artist and prominent person in our local food community. As Felicity says: “The mural is 2 metres by 2.5 metres and depicts images drawn from the local landscape, fresh seasonal produce, free range animals and a normal day at Eltham Farmers’ Market. It was designed to visually show the connection between local food producers and the people who support them by sourcing their food from the market. Painting the mural was a fantastic opportunity for me to paint a rural landscape as this is something I wouldn’t normally do. I really enjoyed adding figures with colour and emotion to tell the story of our local community market.” Thanks, Felicity!

mural1    mural2

Can you spot the kookaburra?

Do you have any items that you could donate?

The Youth Food Movement (YFM) is organising an Urban Forage and Feast event in Brunswick on 2nd December. The event will involve conversations around food sustainability, guest speakers and quality food. They are seeking donations of produce, seedlings, seeds, vouchers etc to be used in their cookup, given away as prizes or sold to fundraise for YFM. They will acknowledge contributors at the event and pickup of goods can be arranged. If you can help out, please email Kyra Hewitt.

In passing, YFM has one of the all-time great sentences on their home page: “Australia’s appetite for organic food is at crazy-milkshake levels.

Mac’s tip of the week

Now is the time to start checking your grape vines for the caterpillars of the grapevine moth. These black and white day-flying moths (not butterflies) lay their eggs on the under-sides of the leaves and it doesn’t take long before the holes appear. As they grow, these caterpillars can eat up to 6 leaves a day each as well as the developing grapes, and severe defoliation can therefore happen. Hand pick as often as you can. If you can’t reach, or numbers are too many, you can use low-toxic, organic bacterial sprays such as Dipel or Success. For those of you with young children, or are still inspired by the wonders of nature, put some caterpillars in a ‘bug catcher’, or large container with air holes. Feed them your chosen leaves and watch them grow and pupate. Until next time, remember: dirty hand are good hands.

Click here to view all of Mac’s tips on our website.

New events

Permablitz 192 (Preston)

What: Jessica has a deep interest in sustainability and permaculture and already has a productive fruit and veg patch in her back garden. She is now looking to transform her never-used, north-facing front lawn from a dull yellow wasteland into a vegetable garden. You will be building two wicking beds, planting espalier fruit trees and also building a raised garden bed. There will be workshops on wicking beds, espaliering and irrigation.
When: Saturday, 12th November, 10am-4pm.
Where: Preston.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Permablitz Melbourne by email.
Bookings / Further information: Permablitz website.

The art of espalier

What: What you will learn: growing espaliered fruit trees; different techniques to make the most of all available space for espalier; and improve your general gardening skills. What you will get: detailed notes on the topic; discount voucher to use at BAAG. “Go vertical” is the cry when garden space is limited. Gardening in two dimensions is what espalier is about and this class will cover the different types and how to get them started and then continue to train them into the desired shape. Topics covered are suitable fruit trees, pruning and training tecniques. Presented by Diana Cotter.
When: Thursday, 17th November, 6.30-9pm.
Where: BAAG, Bulleen.
Cost: $45.
Enquiries: BAAG by phone (8850 3030).
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Introduction to permaculture (two day)

What: A two-day workshop, with the first day being on 19th November and the second day being on 26th November. Led by Donna Livermore. Developed by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, permaculture (permanent agriculture) is a whole system approach to ecological planning and design for sustainable living. This workshop, spread over two weekends, will be part theory, part practical and will immerse you in the ethics, principles and framework to help you design a sustainable and abundant life. You will learn some useful skills and gather great ideas for designing a permaculture oasis on your apartment balcony, in your home garden, street or community. Some of the topics to be covered include: what is permaculture and its relevance today? the ethics and design principles; energy and nutrient cycling; veggie and fruit growing systems; and animals in permaculture. There will be examples from tiny urban gardens to suburban and rural properties showing how we can create resilient, sustainable systems that work with nature and the natural limits of our planet.
When: Saturday, 19th November and Saturday, 26th November, both 10am-4pm.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: $85 for the two days.
Enquiries: Edendale by phone (9433 3711) or email.
Bookings / Further information: LFC calendar entry.

A taste of China: meet authors Kei Lum Chan and Diora Fong Chan

What: Chinese cuisine is steeped in history and passionately embraced by Western culture, indicative of the vast array of Chinese eateries in our community. Avid home cooks have enthusiastically experimented with Chinese cuisine for decades with mainstream supermarkets stocking the special ingredients and tools making it accessible to all. Join Hong-Kong based best-selling authors Kei Lum Chan and Diora Fong Chan as they talk about their new Chinese cooking bible China: The Cookbook and the amazing history of Chinese cuisine. Guests will also take home a signed copy and enjoy a sample tasting from the book, specially prepared by Ringwood Chinese Restaurant.
When: Thursday, 24th November, 6.30-7.30pm.
Where: Realm, Ringwood.
Cost: $32 (includes a signed copy of ‘China:The Cookbook’ and sample tasting).
Enquiries / Bookings: Realm by phone (9800 6430).
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Honey appreciation and tasting evening

What: What you will learn: to recognise the flavours of honey and train your honey palette; to understand the composition of honey; and how to handle, treat and store honey and the meaning of raw, cold-extracted and organic honey. What you will get: a tasting of 9 varieties of honey and honeycomb straight from the hive; notes on the flavours of honey and how to detect flavour profiles; 10% discount voucher for honey purchases valid for 1 year; and a sample pack of 5 honeys to take home. Ever wanted to become a honey connoisseur? Would you like to learn more about the flavours of honey, the composition of honey and how to identify quality honey? You will taste 9 varieties of honey, as well as honeycomb straight from the hive. You will learn to detect the flavour profiles of eucalypts, exotic floral species and backyard suburban honeys. Honeys tasted will include: messmate, macadamia, stringy bark, leatherwood, blackberry, yellow box, manna gum, chestnut and orange blossom. Topics of discussion will include: the structure and nature of honey; training your honey palette; how to handle, treat and store honey; honey labelling (the meaning of raw, cold-extracted, organic and other terms used to describe honey); and the role of honey for bees.
When: Thursday, 24th November, 7-9pm.
Where: Bee Sustainable, Brunswick East.
Cost: $60.
Enquiries: Bee Sustainable by phone (9939 7301) or email.
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Beekeeping workshop

What: What you will learn: bee behaviour; the various major items that make up a bee hive and how to construct them; and the major tasks in hive management. What you will get: a wooden beehive frame that will have beeswax foundation inserted as part of the workshop; and a $5 discount on the book Bee AgSkills (normally $27.50, $22.50 with discount). There will be live bees and honeycomb to look at in a secure exhibition cabinet and a discussion of bee behaviour and hive management. The major items that make up a hive and their construction will be discussed. The equipment a beekeeper needs to work bees will also be reviewed. The major topics discussed will be: establishing a hive; understanding the tasks to be carried out in Spring; how to go about robbing and extracting honey; and swarm control. Participants will be limited to 8 to maintain an informal interactive format.
When: Saturday, 26th November, 9-11am.
Where: Bee Sustainable, Brunswick East.
Cost: $65.
Enquiries: Bee Sustainable by phone (9939 7301) or email.
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Heritage Fruit Society: orchard maintenance workshop

What: Work with their experienced volunteers and learn some new skills. They will be checking the watering system and performing various other maintenance tasks. Possibly grass cutting by mower and whipper-snipper. Some weeding in the nursery. They may lift some nursery trees for planting in the orchard. Newly grafted trees will need to be heeled in at their nursery. Coffee, tea and refreshments will be provided.
When: Sunday, 4th December, 9am-midday.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Heritage Fruit Society by phone (0449 508318).
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Raw living whole foods with Valentina Rise

What: What you will learn: basics of raw food; make guilt free treats; and learn what super foods are. What you will get: samples of all the food they make; and recipes to take home. You will discuss the nutritional benefits of superfoods, and how introducing more raw (natural plant-based) foods into your daily eating regimes can assist in your over-all health. Eating the right foods can help with reducing stress, anxiety and depressive states of being, increase your immunity and gut health and bring greater clarity into your lives. You will learn raw food cooking skills and get to feast on many different foods from savory to sweet healthy treats (e.g. raw pad thai, raw stir fry, raw caramel slice, raw ice cream, raw lemon slice and raw cheesecake). No refined white processed sugars or products will be used. You will gain knowledge on the best natural sweeteners and produce to use to assist in optimal health.
When: Sunday, 4th December, 2-5pm.
Where: Ceres.
Cost: $70.
Enquiries: Ceres by phone (9389 0100).
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Summary of upcoming events

Over the next week
Over the next month

Click here for the complete calendar of upcoming events. Click here for help in how to view the calendar selectively (e.g. search for events in a given suburb).

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