PDC…..Week 5

No doubt about it—this course gets better and better and more fascinating by the week.

We began with a short introduction to microclimates—how to manipulate factors on a site to create mini climate zones to better facilitate the growth of plants. Strategies such as white walls or light-foliaged plants to reflect light, dark surfaces (walls, rocks) to trap warmth, plus using evaporation, condensation and humidity; there seem to be endless possibilities to play with existing site conditions. A classic example is the north-facing suntrap, a semicircle of light-reflecting plants encircling the plants whose growth is to be enhanced. A water feature in front can further add to light reflection and store warmth. It was interesting to learn that this type of structure can allow plants to be grown from the next climate zone, e.g. subtropical plants could be grown in Victoria.

On to strategies for urban design and an opportunity to do our first real design. Cam had arranged for us to visit a neighbouring property where we were to actually do this. The owners were out for the day so Cam & Jessie became ‘pretend’ owners. They told us what they wanted to achieve for the garden and we learned the right questions to ask. We walked the property, taking measurements, noting features and coming up with ideas (“hey, this would be a great place for the chickens!”),  then returned to home base and began preparing sketch plans of the property with (hopefully) all the necessary elements beautifully integrated into a good permaculture design. We had split into four groups, so there will be four separate designs to consider when it’s all over. Should be interesting to see and compare the variations!

2 Responses to “PDC…..Week 5”

  1. rabidlittlehippy Says:

    Hey, I might have to hire you to help design my garden! 😀


  2. foodnstuff Says:

    Would love to help….if only you lived closer.


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