Come and find out what our Permaculture Design course is all about tickets are available at:
Permablitz is about people helping people, learning skills and seeing permaculture designs in action. We are getting ready for next season on blitzs and scheduling all hosts/places into the BPG events calendar. Hooray!So how do I get on the Blitz list? Wait, what is a blitz? Read on!Unclear what a permablitz is?
Let Hannah from Good Life Permaculture explain on this Gardening Australia segment
WHO CAN HOST A BLITZ?
In general we say come to a couple of permablitzes so you gain an understanding of how the day runs (ideally 3 and also you are a financial BPG member). Then, we'll help organise and promote a blitz for you. You don't need a lot of skills, just a commitment to have a go. We ask that you come to some blitzes so you:a) get an idea of what to expect on the dayb) learn some relevant skillsc) demonstrate enough drive to show that you'll maintain your gardend) contribute to the Ballarat Permaculture Guild first (thanks for that!)
YOUR ROLE IN THE BLITZ
As a blitz host you are about to receive a big input of labour, design and good energy. Permablitzes are great fun but do require some work beforehand, so you’re prepared. You will need to have a clear idea of your garden design, feed the troops, do some prep work, and organise materials. You probably won't be doing much work in the garden yourself on the day of the blitz; you’ll need to keep yourself free to answer the many questions that will come up as designs are implemented.However, you can expect help from Ballarat Permaculture Guild with your design, working out quantities of materials needed, promoting the day, registering volunteers, facilitating the day, and some follow up help if needed.About permaculture designWe insist that permablitz must have some permaculture design informing it. Someone who's completed a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) should work with you to draft up a design for your garden. Luckily we have members with PDCs - hooray!Why? We want systems which are appropriate to your budget, skill levels, time and to the constraints and creative possibilities of your space i.e.. we want it to work for you -- to produce as much as it can within the constraints of inputs of resources and time. We believe that applying permaculture design principles will give you a more efficient property, and that translates into less hard yakka for greater food output!You might already have a permaculture design for your place (perhaps you did one yourself, or you’ve had one prepared in the past). That’s fine – we can work with that!We don't discriminate against wealthier people, but we often feel better about performing volunteer designs for people who couldn't have otherwise afforded it. If you can afford it, you might consider a professional design. We have access to a list of professional designers. A professional permaculture design can be less than $400 or upwards of $3000, depending on the level of detail. For most blitzes something towards the lower end would suffice.Book a Walk and TalkThe blitz team will facilitate the day, with at least 2 blitz team members on hand to guide you through the day. Generally, you won't be expected to facilitate the blitz yourself (although some hosts occasionally do).One important step is to book a Walk and Talk with the blitz team members. This entails a walk through your property, discussing your project plans for the day. We also look at logistics, somewhere for lunch, and ensuring OHS is taking into consideration. It’s a social day but safety also plays an important role.Set a dateWork with the Blitz Team to set a date for the permablitz so we can add it to the BPG online calendar and post it on our FB page. Generally you'll want to give yourself at least a couple of weeks to prepare and so there's time to promote the event.
Fill in this form Permablitz pre-host form. Let us know how you'd like to be involved. We are super keen to have heaps of member involvement
New Books in the Library
Over the last couple of months, we have added a number of books to the Library. Some of these have generously been donated and some have been purchased to make sure we have the latest Permaculture related texts. A highlight of the latest books are shown below.
You can browse and search all the books in the Library at: https://ballaratpermacultureguild.org/resources/bpg-library/
Loans Available online
BPG members can now request to borrow a book online using the "Send Request" button at: https://ballaratpermacultureguild.org/resources/bpg-library/
We can arrange for books to be picked up at one of our community events (Permies at the Pub or Permies at the market) or contact-less pickup in Golden Point or Navigators.
On Saturday May 7, BPG hosted Dr Ben Habib Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations (La Trobe University) for a fascinating workshop titled “Community resilience building” Part of the focus of the workshop was “sifting for gems in the rubble of COVID” so that we could learn from the previous two years as we adapt to the climate crisis.
Ben challenged permaculture to realise its potential and go beyond small scale, local inititatives. As he said, “The forces destroying our planet are global – acting local isn't good enough!”
Much of the workshop consisted of small group discussion following personal reflections. Some of the tasks & questions included:
- Draw a picture to represent the pandemic
- What did the pandemic force you to face about yourself?
- How did you adapt to COVID restrictions? (what worked for you? what didn't?)
- What worked for your community?
- How do we constructively work with diverse people?
- What does climate change adaptation mean for you? For your community? For Australia? For the world?
- Who are your climate allies? [how do you work with them? How often do you interact with them?]
This thoughtful and challenging material was delivered within a gentle, interactive framework that catered for participants at all levels. After the event, half the class joined Ben & organisers at a local Indian restaurant to continue the discussion!
[Ben Habib is a futured presenter during the BPG Permaculture Design Course. We highly recommend attending any of Ben's classes or talks!]
RETROSUBURBIA is the latest book by Permaculture founder David Holmgren and considered by many as his most accessible and broadly relevant. In it, he outlines why retrofitting the suburbs is the key to sustainable humansettlement in a low-carbon, post peak-oil world. With numerous case studies based in central Victoria, this book is practical and highly relevant to our area. The book club is FREE and open to all who are interested and able to commit to the reading and participation in the club.
RETROSUBURBIA discusses creating a simple but rich & abundant lifestyle by working through three main themes: built, biological and behavioural. We will meet over the 9 weeks of Term 2, commencing on April 27 and concluding on June 22. You don't have to have read the book before April 27 but you do need to commit to reading during the term!
Our time each week will focus on small group discussions of questions arising from the chapters discussed. Each week we discuss several chapters of the book. No need to purchase: there are 16 copies of the book available for loan. [Further information about the book:www.retrosuburbia.com]
This is an in-person bookclub, to be held at Chestnut Farm, Invermay (10 mins from Ballarat Town Hall) from 7 - 9 pm each week. Zoom may be an option for those who don't live locally, are not vaccinated or who cannot attend particular nights due to family responsibilities, illness, etc. You will not usually be able to join the group after the term has started, so please sign up NOW! The club will be facilitated by BPG President & long-term permie Steve Burns, but Steve's role is wrangling the discussion rather than presenting. Previous RS bookclubs have featured very lively group discussion. The issues, topics and case studies are highly engaging and the group usually wants to talk all night! Look forward to a fun night that will also stimulate serious thinking about life direction & choices.
FREE event but you must book here:
April 27 - Introductions & agreements, Retrosuburbia talk by David Holmgren
May 4 - Chapters 1 - 3 Setting the Scene
May 11 - Ch 4 - 7 Built environment strategies, case studies & group discussion
May 18 - Ch 8 - 13 Built environment strategies, case studies & group discussion
May 25 Ch 14 - 18 Built environment strategies, case studies & group discussion
June 1 Ch 19 - 23 Biological environment (aka garden & farm!) strategies, case studies & group discussion
June 8 - Ch 24 - 28 Behavioural environment strategies case studies & group discussion (where the rubber hits the road)
June 15 - Ch 29 - 34 Behavioural strategies continued
June 22 - Group & personal reflections and goal setting. What is your RS vision? Action Plan?