Oct 042017
 

Mac’s tip of the week

With the long awaited arrival of Spring, I have spotted a few aphids starting to appear on fresh new growth. Luckily, I also noticed some hoverflies in those same areas indicating they too have spotted a food source area to lay their eggs. Everyone knows that ladybirds eat aphids, but many don’t know about the hoverfly (or lacewing for that matter!). Often confused with a form of bee or wasp due to their yellow and black bands, hoverflies have a characteristic flight pattern – hovering in one spot, moving suddenly forwards or sideways, then hovering again. They are also important pollinators in your garden. So my tip this week is not to rush for sprays because the humble hoverfly and others may well make a meal of the situation for you if you let them.

Read all of Mac’s tips.

Eltham Farmers’ Market is going weekly (from 5th November)!

The aim has always been for Eltham Farmers’ Market to be a weekly market: crops grow every week, people eat every week and they buy food every week, so it makes sense that the market is open as often as possible if it is to offer a real alternative as the community’s regular shopping destination. After 3 1/2 years successfully operating twice a month, and with the current markets operating at capacity, the time has now come to go weekly.

Some of the most popular stallholders are planning to attend every week, including Apted’s Orchards (apples and pears) from Arthurs Creek, Just Picked (fruit, veggies and jams) from Yan Yean, Peninsula Fresh Organics (veggies), Schulz Organic Farms (milk), and Top Hundred Acres (eggs) from Yan Yean.

The new markets will also provide opportunities for new stallholders, who will include A Local Baker St Andrews (bread), Gourmet Pies from Brunswick, La Villa Salumi (sausages, bacon and smoked smallgoods) from Kilsyth, and Take Me Home (pastas, gnocchi and sauces) from Coburg.

So, from 5th November, when you wake on a Sunday morning you will know it is market day without checking your calendar! Do your weekly shopping at the market. Also, bring your friends – there are still lots of local people who haven’t yet discovered the market.

Incredible Edible Eltham is now famous!

Well, sort of. Incredible Edible Eltham featured in Metro Express, which is the Metro’s internal magazine.

Local food producer news

Top Hundred Acres’ farm gate will be open for egg sales every day in October. 1243 Yan Yean Road, Yan Yean.

Mount Mary, from Lilydale, are James Halliday’s 2018 ‘Winery of the Year’. Dappled Wines, from Yarra Glen, are ‘Best New Winery of the Year’. Boat O’Craigo, who have a vineyard in Kangaroo Ground, are ‘Dark Horse of the Year’.

Deb Graham, from Blue Pear Pantry in North Warrandyte, has featured in the Leader.

Newsletter reader Katrinia Forstner’s bee hotels have featured in the Leader.

Watsonia Library Community Garden have just been given a grant from Banyule Council for 10 fruit trees. One thing that I have noticed about our local community gardens is that some are much more attuned to applying for, and getting, grants than others.

Advice needed re bees and lorikeets

Vicki Jordan writes in: “We have an old gum with a wonderful hole which for years has been home to lorikeets. However, this time last year (and I have noticed it has just happened again this year) it has been taken over by bees. I am wondering why and if it indicates that the nestlings have been attacked by the bees or something else. It is just too high for me to inspect with a ladder. Anyone have any advice?Email me your advice and I’ll pass it on to Vicki.

Every newsletter needs a good picture

Glove plant (Frigidis iocis).

Some interesting links

Our colleagues at Sustainable Gardening Australia have recently published a number of gardening guides: choosing mulch; feeding your plants; green manure; and the science of composting.

Which link was clicked most times in last week’s newsletter?

The interview with Felicity Gordon and Heath Rickard.

Joke of the week

Why didn’t the cheese want to get sliced? It had grater plans.

Read all the jokes.

New events

Cultivating communities with Costa

What: A networking event for community gardens and friends groups. Go along and represent your local group. Hear from Costa about the benefits of collective community action, community gardens and volunteering for conservation. Network with other like-minded community volunteers. Discover new things about the many community gardens and friends groups in the area. Share morning tea and lunch (provided free of charge).
When: Saturday, 7th October, 10.30am-1.30pm.
Where: Mernda.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Shedfest – Yarra Valley Wine Festival

What: Wineries in the Yarra Valley will open their sheds to house two days of food, wine, live music and entertainment. There will be plenty of food on offer and moderately priced at all the wineries during the course of the day. 22 wineries are participating, including Badger’s Brook from Coldstream, Billanook Estate from Chirnside Park, Millers Dixons Creek Estate, Tokar Estate from Coldstream, Warramunda Estate from Coldstream, Yering Farm from Yering, and Yileena Park from Yarra Glen.
When: Saturday, 7th October and Sunday, 8th October, both 10am-5pm.
Where: Yarra Valley.
Cost: $15 (includes a souvenir glass).

Cleansing and mindful eating

What: This workshop will discuss ways to cleanse and re-energise the body and support the immune system in time for the warmer months.
When: Saturday, 14th October, 11am-midday.
Where: Coburg.
Cost: $35.
Bookings: TryBooking.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Club apiary opening

What: The official launch of The Beekeepers Club apiary. Go along and meet the community gardeners. Hives will be opened, sausages will be sizzled and bees will be talked. Hosted by St Johns Riverside Community Garden.
When: Sunday, 15th October, midday-1pm.
Where: Heidelberg.
Cost: gold coin.
Bookings: their website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

A wild food foragers guild session

What: Ingrid leads weekly foraging and cooking workshops in the Castlemaine / Chewton area. She will teach you some easy and practical recipies using whatever is foraged on the day.
When: Sunday, 15th October, 1-3pm.
Where: Merri Creek.
Cost: $10.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Cooking master class

What: Enjoy 3 tasting size courses cooked by chef Bek McMillan, from Gourmet Living, who will demonstrate step by step. All recipes are included. Menu: grilled haloumi; ginger beef slices; and honey ice cream tart.
When: Monday, 16th October, 11am-1pm and again on Thursday, 19th October, 7-9pm.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: $42.
Bookings / Further information: their website.

SEEDs Communal Garden rummage sale

What: The garden’s main annual fundraiser: bake sale, seedlings, garage sale, drafts, sausage sizzle and live music.
When: Saturday, 21st October, 10am-3pm.
Where: SEEDs Communal Garden, Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Kombucha workshop with bush food flavours

What: Join Gemma Macri to learn about making kombucha and then making the flavour your own with a range of bush food flavours sourced from Karen Sutherland’s own bush food garden. Gemma will take you through all facets of first and secondary fermentation (including flavouring with native herbs) and the fermentation process. There will be opportunity to taste both green and black tea kombucha with the bush food flavours. Karen, of Edible Eden Design, will then take you on a tour of her garden looking at the special plants being used to flavor the kombucha. You will take home the kombucha recipe and technical notes, as well as notes on the flavourings used.
When: Sunday, 22nd October, 9.30am-12.30pm.
Where: Pascoe Vale South.
Cost: $70.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Native food plants for pots and small spaces

What: Join Karen Sutherland, of Edible Eden Design, in her edible garden as she takes you through growing a range of bush foods in containers and small spaces. If you only have a courtyard, balcony or small garden this shouldn’t stop you planting and enjoy a range of bush food colours and textures in your garden and amazing flavours on your plate.
When: Sunday, 22nd October, 1.30-4.30pm.
Where: Pascoe Vale South.
Cost: $65.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Public workshop – sensory test

What: Every Monday, Padre Coffee hosts an open information and training session. Join their head roaster, Fay, as she takes you through a sensory journey in the world of coffee, focusing on palate development and olfactory training to assist in cupping, tasting, and grading coffee.
When: Monday, 23rd October, 2-3pm.
Where: Brunswick East.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Cooking master class

What: Enjoy 3 tasting size courses cooked by chef Bek McMillan, from Gourmet Living, who will demonstrate step by step. All recipes are included. Menu: pesto pasta salad; honey baked ham; and brandy butterscotch mousse tart.
When: Thursday, 26th October, 7-9pm and again on Friday, 27th October, 7-9pm.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: $42.
Bookings / Further information: their website.

Kevin Heinze GROW Spring sale

What: Fruit trees & seedlings; veggies & herbs; cakes & preserves; BBQ; Devonshire tea; cut flowers; pots; and books.
When: Saturday, 28th October, midday-10pm.
Where: Brunswick East.
Cost: $69.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Spring vegan feast

What: Enjoy a delicious vegan banquet at Rumi Restaurant with fresh produce from Days Walk Farm. The feast is for a two-hour duration and tickets are available for midday, 5.30pm and 8pm.
When: Sunday, 29th October, 9am-3pm.
Where: Kevin Heinze GROW, Doncaster.
Cost: free.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Cooking master class

What: Enjoy 3 tasting size courses cooked by chef Bek McMillan, from Gourmet Living, who will demonstrate step by step. All recipes are included. Menu: ham & brie tart; chicken rice salad; and Christmas pudding ice cream tart.
When: Thursday, 9th November, 7-9pm and again on Friday, 10th November, 7-9pm.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: $42.
Bookings / Further information: their website.

Garden fiesta

What: Free sustainable lifestyle and garden workshops; BBQ and hot food; Peppertree Place nursery; makers market & information stalls; cafe; and live entertainment and music.
When: Saturday, 11th November, 10am-4pm.
Where: PepperTree Place, Coburg.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.

Food and mood

What: This workshop will discuss ways to use food as medicine to promote mental health. Learn about foods and herbs that can support us through anxiety, depression or to generally lift the mood and support mental health and well being.
When: Saturday, 11th November, 11am-midday.
Where: Coburg.
Cost: $35.
Bookings: TryBooking.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Food and women’s health

What: This workshop will discuss how foods and herbs can support women’s health; including fertility, regulating menstrual/moon cycles, and ways to relieve symptoms of PMT and endometriosis.
When: Saturday, 18th November, 11am-midday.
Where: Coburg.
Cost: $35.
Bookings: TryBooking.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Artisan cheesemaking with the Coldstream Dairy

What: Interested in learning about the traditional art of homemades cheeses? Anna Ladner, from Coldstream Dairy, will demonstrate the art of making cheese.
When: Tuesday, 28th November, 1.30-2.30pm.
Where: Lilydale Library.
Cost: free.
Bookings: their website.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Dehydrating your summer fruit and vegetables

What: Do you have an excess of summer fruit and vegetables? Learn the basics of how to dehydrate foods easily and safely without preservatives. Summer crops of fruit and vegetables can be home dried for use all year and to provide healthy snacks for the family.
When: Wednesday, 29th November, 6-7pm.
Where: Whittlesea Library.
Cost: free.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Preserving basics – making preserves for Christmas

What: What you will learn: how to select, re-use and sterilise suitable jars; how to use different preserving techniques; and how to pretty up jars of preserves to make them suitable to give away. What you will get: recipes all of the preserves made; jars of the preserves made on the day; and tastings of the preserves made. Giving a home made gift that is appreciated for Christmas need not be expensive, nor too difficult or time-consuming. Using some basic preserving techniques, you will make jars of tasty preserves for you to give away (or take home and enjoy for yourself). No preserving background is assumed. You will discuss which jars and lids to use and the safe storage of the preserves. The preserves made will be mainly with seasonal fruit and vegies and will include a savoury onion jam, cranberry chutney, some bottled dried fruits in brandied syrup and a delicious spicy pickle. You will decorate the jars with labels and tags.
When: Friday, 1st December and again on Saturday, 2nd December, both 10am-1.30pm.
Where: Donvale.
Cost: $85.
Bookings / Further information: WeTeachMe.

Summer fruit tree maintenance

What: What you will learn: how to prune to keep trees to a manageable size; how to prune to maximise fruit production in the coming season; and keeping espaliered shapes in check. Watch and ask questions of Angelo Eliades, as he prunes both traditionally shaped trees and espaliered varieties. Convention had us pruning deciduous fruit trees in winter but now the thinking is swinging to doing it straight after fruiting, in late summer or autumn. Techniques are slightly different, so it is wise to see the pruning in action on actual trees, all at Bulleen Art & Garden.
When: Saturday, 2nd December, 9.30am-12.30pm.
Where: Bulleen Art & Garden.
Cost: $45.
Bookings: WeTeachMe.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Healing the gut

What: This workshop instalment will discuss how we can heal the gut through food and fermentation with a practical introduction to komboocha making.
When: Saturday, 2nd December, 11am-midday.
Where: Coburg.
Cost: $35.
Bookings: TryBooking.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Summary of upcoming events

Over the next week
Over the next month

View the complete calendar of upcoming events.

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