Monday, July 5, 2010

Fruit Tree Workshop

An apple tree potted up and pruned in a vase shape. I hope to make mine this good next weekend

I went to a fantastic fruit tree workshop at CERES on Saturday. And I get to go back again next Saturday to finish it off!

Justin Caverely is our very knowledgeable teacher. If you get a chance to do one of his courses: go for it! The first course I did with him was back in 2007, the Organic Vegetable Gardening. and it really started me to spin off at ever increasing speeds on a new pathway in life: towards my permaculture future. In the vegie growing course, Justin mentioned this concept of permaculture. It all seemed to make sense. Here was a system that used common sense that provided for us with minimal effort, plus it protected the natural ecosystem, all through designing the system carefully.

After the course, I started doing my own research on permaculture. Found out there was a local permaculture network, Permaculture Melbourne. One of their members was running an Introduction to Permaculture weekend. My curiosity continued to grow. I read more, I gardened more, I joined The Digger's Club and spent hours pouring over their seed catalogue. It wasn't particularly wise of me to buy so many seeds, as I soon after took leave without pay for a year to volunteer in Guatemala. Volunteer where, I wasn't sure. But I packed my recently acquired Earth User's Guide to Permaculture by Rosemary Morrow as I wanted to finish reading it and thought it may be useful if I volunteered in sustainable agriculture.

The forces of the world pointed me in one direction: volunteering at a permaculture institute in Guatemala, Instituto Mesoamericano de Permacultura for most of 2009. I didn't even realise how far an Australian design system had travelled! This of course made me want to do my Permaculture Design Certificate as soon as I got back to Australia in November 2009.

Here I am now, one week off from going part time so I can put my energy into starting a permaculture plot and sell my produce directly to householders through a Community Supported Agriculture scheme of weekly box of vegies, fruit and nuts.

I'm just a little excited!

So my tip: go do a course on organic gardening or permaculture at wherever is closest to you. Lucky if that be at CERES and you'll be taught by Justin. You never know where it may lead...

This blog entry was supposed to be about fruit trees, but I got carried away. Details on what I learnt will be after next class. Tip: prune hard and set up the design of your tree. You'll be rewarded.


  1. I just got my Diggers Club catalogue in the mail on Friday and I want to buy everything in it. I think this permaculture thing could be addictive! Now I just need some land, a river, a spring...

  2. I love pouring over the Diggers Club catalogue. I bought my friends one of their apple collections the other day for their wedding. Yesterday, I stopped off at Linga A While nursery to check out what bare rooted fruit trees they had. Seventh heaven! Soon I get to buy and plant! As in, within the next few weeks