Conservation in the Community

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Sturt Greens Public Forum: Conservation in your Community

NPSP Payneham Library Trinity room, 22 May 6:30-9:30

The loss of native habitat in our urban centres has led to the decline of wildlife populations.

David Paton, Associate Professor at the University of Adelaide, will talk on the declining bird numbers of the Mt Lofty Ranges, the reasons behind it and what can be done. David has an expertise in Ecology and behaviour of birds as well as habitat restoration.

Jenny Deans will speak on the importance of maintaining a habitat for native bees. Jenny (B.E. Dip. Hort.) is a member of Sturt Upper Reaches Landcare Group as well as the Old School Community Garden at Stirling,

Question and answer period to follow presentations. Admission is free to all, $2 gold coin donation optional. Tea, coffee and light supper available. You can register your interest in advance at: the Greens SA webpage: Conservation in your Community.

Please contact Matt, our secretary, for more details:

Payneham Library location

Posted in Conservation, Event, Native wildlife | Leave a comment

Making space for native bees

Jenny Deans gave a presentation and workshop at One Planet Market , Sustainable Communities SA, on how to create an environment in your garden which protects and encourages native bees in your neighbourhood. Jenny discussed the importance of native bees in the pollination specifically of Australian native plants.

Some key points in encouraging native bees in your environment include:

  • Providing a ‘wild’ environment where native bees can take refuge. They prefer undisturbed soil and flora locations
  • Avoiding the use of insecticides. Even the best quality organic compounds can kill native bees
  • Planting native flora to encourage native bees into your garden
  • Making bee habitat by either creating nests from twigs or boring small holes into dead tree trunks

Jenny discussed the research carried out by Dr Katja Hogendoorn on native bees, which also included instructions on how to create native bee habitat. Jenny also provided literature to support her presentation as well as an e-mail providing more detail on where to get more information and resources.
The workshop focussed on building bee habitat using simple household items such as a tin can, toilet roll and bundles of woody plant cuttings from a plant which naturally has a hole in its core. By bundling the sticks tightly inside the toilet roll, then placing into the tin can, a wire can then be attached through the can to support it in a tree within your garden.


Completed product ready for installation in a wild part of your garden

Jenny Deans (B.E. Dip. Hort.) is a member of Sturt Upper Reaches Landcare Group as well as the Old School Community Garden at Stirling.


University of Adelaide 2017, Dr. Katja Hogendoorn, viewed on 18 March, 2017,

Making bee hotels

Native Bees Talk One Planet Market 2017 March 18

Posted in Australian natives, Education and training, Gardening | Leave a comment

Grow, grow, grow your own

Chris Bryant and John Boland from Eastern Suburbs Permaculture group are giving a workshop 2 PM on Saturday 22nd April 2017 at Unley Community Centre, 18 Arthur Street Unley through Sustainable Communities SA.

“Living more sustainably is a real challenge. Where to start? How to do it? Two people who have made their house more sustainable and grow a lot of their own food are giving this workshop. John Boland is Professor of Environmental Mathematics at University of South Australia, specialising in modelling of renewable energy and water supply systems. His PhD was in modelling heat flows in houses, which led him on a path towards work in energy efficient housing. Chris Bryant is a part time research assistant, former registered nurse, and an accredited Permaculture Designer. She has been in charge of the garden design features that will be focussed on in this workshop. Together, they produce 30% of their food from their garden which also acts as climate control, habitat for frogs, birds and lizards, sanctuary and place for enjoyment. On the side, they also manage a rural property in Monarto, where they are custodians for several rare and threatened plant species, including one on the nationally endangered species list. Over thirty years, they have made it into a private conservation park.”

Please register to attend this workshop at to ensure your place. For more details about the workshop, download this PDF: Grow, Grow, Grow Your Own flyer

Posted in Gardening, Permaculture, Zone 1 | 2 Comments

Dhyan Marga’s Garden – Open Garden SA

The 2017 Open Garden SA season has started this weekend. For all those interested, take a look at their upcoming list of gardens:  Of note is Dhyan Marga’s Garden, Camden Park, Sat Jan 28 – Sun Jan 29 | 10:00 am – 4:30 pm, 18 Patricia Avenue, Camden Park.

Dhyan Marga was a long time associate of the ESP group, having an amazing garden in this area before moving west. All reports are that this new garden is equally interesting. Dhyan Marga has provided her own description, which you can read by clicking here.

Posted in Gardening | Leave a comment

Gawler Sustainability Fair

The Gawler Sustainability Fair takes place on 6 November from 10am to 3pm.

Posted in Renewable energy | Leave a comment

Can Trees communicate with each other?

In the early 90s, I purchased Bill Mollsion’s book, A Practical Guide for a Sustainable Future. In Chapter 6, Bill explains how important the tree canopy is to the ecology of the forest. He discusses the influence of mature trees to influence the surrounding rainfall and ecology (p. 137-151). He also talks about guilds, plants which live in close association and have a symbiotic relationship.

Research carried out by Dr. Suzanne Simard from the University of British Columbia over the last 30 years has demonstrated that trees not only communicate with each other, they can support each other by passing carbon to each other. Suzanne has also found that Mother trees, the mature forest trees, nurture their own offspring by providing them with more carbon that surrounding neighbours.


See also

Simard, S 2014, TED-Ed talk: The Networked Beauty of Forests, viewed on 29 September 2016,


CBC 2016, Talkin’ Trees, viewed on 29 September 2016 [originally viewed on Facebook post],

Mollison B 1990, Permaculture: A practical guide for a sustainable future, Island Press, Washington DC.

Simard, S 2016, Ted Talks: How Trees Talk to Each Other, viewed on 29 September 2016,


Posted in Permaculture, Trees | 1 Comment

Vale Bill Mollison

Sad day for permaculturalists around the world with the passing of co-founder Bill Mollison. His ideas on permanent agriculture were the essence of what is now food security and sustainability.

His first work, although more an essay in book format, formed the core thinking from which thousands of ‘disciples’ would develop methods and techniques for creating an ecology for living.

We are all the richer for his contribution. Enjoy this video (produced circa 1989) of Bill explaining how Permaculture came about.

 See also

ABC 2016,  Tributes flow in for permaculture ‘father’ Bill Mollison, viewed on 27 September 2016,

Holmgren, D 2016, Bill Mollison passes, viewed on 27 September, 2016

Mollison, B 1989, Bill Mollison In Grave Danger of Falling Food 1989, viewed on Youtube 29 September 2016,

Permaculture Australia 2016, Farewell Bill Mollison, viewed on 26 September 2016,

Permaculture (UK) 2016, Bruce Charles ‘Bill’ Mollison 1928-2016, viewed on 27 September 2016,

Wikipedia 2016, Bill Mollison, viewed 0n 27 September 2016

Posted in Obituary, Permaculture | Leave a comment