Design


DESIGN APPROACH

You are at the centre.

I will support you to:

  • Appreciate the existing ecology in your garden and realise your vital role in its transformation towards more life.
  • create clarity around where you want to take your garden, develop a design adapted to your life and take some practical steps towards it
  • Evolve your capacity to transform your garden yourself and develop an ongoing culture of observation, nurturing and adaptation so that you and your land can thrive together.

Sessions typically involve:

  • learning and designing together
  • working alongside each-other
  • storytelling, exchange, cups of tea
  • immersing in your place and how you relate to it
  • trying, experiencing, refining living designs
  • documenting our observations and thoughts

TYPICAL SESSIONS

The kinds of territory we might explore during sessions, according to your specific context:

Design with permaculture principles
Use zones, sectors and patterns to design for more life, develop a culture of observation and work with natural processes to capture flows and energy.

Developing and using microclimates
Warm spots, damp spots; protection from scorching sun, biting frost, destructive winds. Identify and develop opportunities around you. Avocados in Melbourne!

Nurturing healthy soil
It’s alive and wants to be treated like it’s special. You can dig and not-dig; you can build fertility or choose to work within the limits of ancient local soils.

Weed management
They are pioneers and indicators, agents of repair, cyclers of nutrients. They work for free and can be made redundant. Learn to read, love and eat them!

Composting
Make the sweet-smelling black gold which powers gardens. Hot composting, worms; daily habits and processes to convert waste streams into food.

Establishing a productive garden
Preparing, positioning, combining, planting, training, watering, nurturing, protecting, harvesting! Evolve routines and systems which get a little better each year.

Establishing perennials
Imagine a garden which quietly becomes more resilient, complex and productive over time. Positioning, selecting, combining and nurturing thriving perennial plants.

Pruning
To intervene or let nature decide? You can prune for form, structure, productivity and health; when planting, after fruiting, when dormant. Or not at all.

Growing food
Fresh, healthy, seasonal food; satisfaction, sharing, security. Planting seeds, transferring seedlings, training, protecting, feeding and harvesting.

Fruit trees
Each peach, pear, plum. Selecting varieties, finding the right spot, planting, nurturing, pruning and protecting the harvest.

Berries
Stained fingers, happy kids and summer pudding. Oh glorious raspberry! Brambles, canes, trellises and protection. Feed them and train them and they will provide.

Working with water
Wet stuff that flows downhill bringing life. Harvest, storage and distribution. The natural water cycle, greywater, rainwater, tanks, pumps, measured irrigation.

Irrigation systems
So many ways to deliver water to thirsty plants. Rainfall, wicking beds, hand watering, sprinklers, driplines, ag pipes. Ease, efficiency and timing.

Kids in gardens
The big green playground. Foraging, play, connection with life and food. Nurturing curiosity, imagination, self-sufficiency.

Habitat, complexity and biodiversity
If you build it, they will come. Set aside some areas to create biodiverse, low-disturbance niches for the lizard, the frog and the blue-banded bee.

Shaping a garden around your life
Evolve your capacity, develop a vision and foster a culture of observation, nurturing and adaptation. Daily habits, ways of seeing, developing a holistic context.

Garden Design
Use a range of frameworks and patterns to find the right spot. Permaculture zones, circulation and area analysis, seeing in process, a living design process.

Immersing in your living system
Deeply engage and explore ecological, energetic and non-reductionist ways of seeing the world. Embrace succession, natural timescales and landscape function.


DESIGN PHILOSOPHY

A garden is a journey.

You are vital to the ongoing evolution of your garden. By slowing down, tuning in and working with what’s already evolving, you can play an essential role in bringing more life. By grasping the whole story of your life and your garden you can define a clear vision before taking some practical first steps to evolve from the present.

If you design your own garden, you are more likely to enjoy it, nurture it and help it evolve in the future. Gardens are a journey and their life comes from the daily routines and a continuous process of adaptation by the people who inhabit them.

Avoiding hasty, heavy-handed approaches and evolving your garden at a pace which allows you to learn and adapt as you go, is a natural, living process, moving steadily in the right direction. By fostering a daily practice of observation and adaptation, you can develop your own patterns of behaviour, habits and policies — a culture of how you and your land can thrive together.


Fees

What I’ll do and what it costs.

My hourly rate is $60/hr.


An initial session is $240.
This includes:

  • A quick chat over the phone to find out how we might work together
  • An initial email outlining costs, timelines, processes
  • My site research and specific preparation prior to session
  • A 2-hr design session in which we
    – immerse in you and your place
    – work to establish your intention
    – identify some design frameworks and initial steps
  • A written summary emailed promptly after session which includes:
    – observations, initial thoughts
    – relevant patterns for you to use as you evolve your design
    – links to further resources
    – initial steps you can take
    – what we might explore in future sessions


Subsequent sessions are $180 for a 2-hr session
(+$60/hr for additional hours)
This includes:

  • My preparation prior to session
  • A 2-hr design session
  • A written summary afterwards


You are welcome to invite friends or neighbours along to join sessions and share the costs. If lots of people are keen to attend, we can plan a more structured workshop session.