Backyard food forests

Backyard food forests

Imagine walking out into your own private backyard food forest, you're surrounded by a huge variety of productive trees with branches swelling with fruit, juicy red apples, figs, apricots and many others. Looking closer under the canopy you see shrubs covered in blueberries and currents that taste sweet having soaked in the sun. The ground appears as a deep glossy green carpet of herbs with a patchwork of flowers, reds, pinks and purples, bees buzzing in and around. Following a tidy little path, the inside of the forest opens up with the sweet fragrance of lavender, spicy basil and tangy lemon balm. You watch as a butterfly lands on a passion fruit vine, winding its way up a tree like a jungle vine. You feel supported and connected to the abundance of nature just like all the plants in the forest are supported and connecting to each other.

Cars, carbon and caring for the environment

You know what? I’d rather not have to drive a car as much as I do. Driving around knowing that I’m contributing to the pollution of the very same environment that I rely on for my own survival is very frustrating.

My mission with Thriving Foodscapes is to retrofit the City of Canberra by helping people grow their own healthy food at home and work. In order to do this I need to transport compost, sleepers, plants and myself around town. If I was to do this by foot it would take me a very long time and to be honest I don’t think my knees are up to the task.

How can I deal with this? I could shut down my business and go live in a cave somewhere so I never do any damage again.

No, I have to remain positive, and turn the problem into the solution.

So what are the solutions?
Join a carbon offset program to neutralise my emissions.
Buy a car that runs on used veggie oil?
Get an electric car and power it from solar?
Ride a horse and cart?

I'll admit that I don’t know the best answer, but I would like to hear your ideas before I make a decision. What would you do to make your footprint on our beautiful planet a more positive one?

Let me know in the comments below.

Canberra's sustainable sidewalks

Canberra's sustainable sidewalks

As you’ve probably already heard, Shane Rattenbury, Minister for Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS) has announced a draft guide, that would allow Canberra residents to utilise residential nature strips for small scale food production or gardens.

Here at Thriving Foodscapes we support any initiative that makes it easier to produce healthy food at home and encourages a thriving sustainable community. 

So for anyone interested in footpath farming, here's what you need to know.

What's growing the Canberra community?

What's growing the Canberra community?

There are a lot of exciting things happening in the Canberra community at the moment around sustainability and local food. And, with the new guidelines announced for productive nature strip  gardening, there’s no excuse not to get out there to grow, harvest and buy local healthy food.

So I’ve taken a break from harvesting tomatoes to gather this exhaustive list of organisations and projects that are springing up, that we can all get involved in, to help build a thriving sustainable city and a healthy community.

A short introduction to swales

A short introduction to swales

So you might be wondering what is a swale? Well a simple explanation would be ‘A water harvesting ditch, built on the contour of the landscape’. But why do we want to harvest water you might ask. The answer… to grow trees. Yes, swales are always planted with tree systems, and trees love water.

Now, let’s discuss the two main features of a swale that makes them so useful.