Celebrating LIFE, celebrating PERMACULTURE Permaculture Festival, fourteenth Australasian Permaculture Convergence, Canberra City Farm, Australia, April 2018

The Permaculture Festival on Sunday 15 April 2018 preceded the fourteenth Australasian Permaculture Convergence in Canberra.

Australian permaculture convergences are held in different parts of the country every two years.

AUTUMN CAME SUDDENLY to Canberra this year. From temperatures in the twenties celsius it fell to the low teens just in time for the Permaculture Festival at Canberra City Farm. Grey skies and a strong, biting, cold wind greeted the estimated 4000 people who were tough enough to brave the weather.

With an outlook to the range that stands above the city, Canberra City Farm is an extensive array of vegetable gardens, fruit trees and a few sheds. There’s a rural feel to the place that is enhanced by the open fields surrounding it. It was a good place to stage the Permaculture Festival that was the prelude to the four days of the Fourteenth Australasian Permaculture Convergence (APC14) just outside the city at the Greenhills Conference Centre centre in Stromlo.

Fresh organic veggies and books, food ready-to-eat for omnivores and vegetarians, games for adults and children, talks and information — it was all there in the alleyway of stalls and beyond. Also there was David Holmgren and the Melliodora crew from central Victoria with their books that included David’s new volume, Retrosuburbia. And also there was Charlie McGee and the Incredible Vegetable Sound System.

The alley of stalls at 2018 Permaculture Festival was the chance to catch up with friends and colleagues unseen since the last Australasian Permaculture Convergence or beyond.
Just one of the food services at the Permaculture Festival, the earthen oven at Canberra City Farm was was put to good use making hot pizza for the cold, hungry crowd.
Someone with an eye on the weather and an entrepreneurial mind was selling used winter clothes at the Festival. Business was brisk.
Robyn Clayfield, pemaculture educator and author, chats with Ego Lemos, a development worked from East Timor who, with Australian, Lachlan McKenzie, has written a three-part permaculture design manual for the tropics. Ego and Lachlan led a talk on the manual at APC14

Then there was music…

At the 2016 permaculture convergence, APC13 in Perth, Western Australia, Charlie’s band, The Formidable Vegetable Sound System, had the audience on its feet, dancing. And just as in Perth, their music at the 2019 convergence in Canberra stimulated the audience to get up and move.

The band has carved out a specialist niche for their upbeat sound by writing and performing songs around permaculture themes. Their music is available on CD or as digital download from their website.

When you feel the music you just can't sit still… dancers were soon on their feet when The Formidable Vegetable Sound System started.
Charlie McGee and the Formidable Vegetable Sound System are favourites at permaculture festivals and convergences.
Violin, trombone and ukelele generate a sonic warmth even the wind and cold couldn't quieten. The Formidable Vegetable Sound System were going full-power.

Game of cards

Also on stage was Robyn Clayfield. Robyn is a regular at permaculture convergences to where she travels from her home at Crystal Waters Permaculture Village in the hilly hinterland in Queensland’s Sunshine Coast .

Robyn developed card games designed to teach permaculture and assist in design. One of these was the focus of a session at the Permaculture Festival, although it ended up with participants chasing the wind-blown cards around the field.

Robyn Clayfield teaches a variety of permaculture-related courses through her small business, Earthcare Education. At the Permaculture Festival she led participants through one of her permaculture design card games.
Card game participants tell participants and audience what their cards explain.
It was a busy afternoon for the Retrosuburbia crew as people checked out their books.

Sheltering from the Canberra cold and wind, the Retrosuburbia crew were busy talking and selling David’s book of the same name. There was David Holmgren, the co-inventor of the permaculture Design system, Beck Lowe, Oliver Holmgren, Richard Telford of Permaculture Principles and Brenna Quinlan, the young woman who illustrated David’s book. There were also more than a few people disappointed at missing out on a copy when the book sold out. Fortunately for those attending APC14, a new shipment arrived before the Convergence ended.

permaculture educator, Megan Cooke, checks her photos with David Holmgren.
David Holmgren was busy signing copies of his new book, Retrosuburbia. Megan Cooke from Garden To table Permaculture on the NSW Central Coast was one of customers.
Reports that a garden gnome was sighted at the Permaculture Festival proved to be true. From left: Lachlan McKenzie and Ego Lemos, authors of The Tropical permaculture Guidebook, with host of ABC Gardening Australia and permaculture practitioner, Costa Georgiardis.
Rays of light penetrated the clouds over Canberra as the Permaculture Festival drew to a close and people headed home or, for some, over to Stromlo for APC14.

Canberra City Farm: http://www.urbanagriculture.org.au/canberra-city-farm/


Buy Retrosuburbia — the book: https://au.permacultureprinciples.com/product/retrosuburbia/

The Formidable Vegetable Sound system: http://formidablevegetable.com.au

Melliodora — the place: https://holmgren.com.au/melliodora/

International Permaculture Day: https://permacultureday.org

Permaculture Australia: https://permacultureaustralia.org.au

Reporting permaculture — PacificEdge: https://pacific-edge.info

Created By
Russ Grayson


Photos and story by Russ Grayson — https://pacific-edge.info

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.