Sustainability

How to Make a Sump System for Rainwater Collection

Feeling limited by your water tank capacity? Need to store more water but can’t fit the tanks under your guttering? What if there was an easier way, so you could have what ever height tank you wanted, and still catch all your runoff? Well there is! It’s called a sump system. When it rains, the

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Mulch your Mulch!

Not only does mulch make an impressive weed suppressant, it plays a vital role in keeping your plants healthy. As mulch breaks down, it turns into “black gold” a.k.a. organic matter. This organic matter provides much needed nutrients to your plants, and also protects the roots from too much sun, temperature fluctuations, and moisture control.

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Putting Permaculture into Practice

The best place to start with permaculture is your own backyard. That might be as small as a paved courtyard or as big as a farm; either way, anyone can put permaculture into practice. Permaculture is a flexible system that caters for every type of property. It allows you to start small, and build up

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Self Sufficient YOU

The world changed for most of us, sooner or later. Some very much so, and others not so much. Lifestyles were forced to change, to adapt. Many of us started to work from home. We all had the same questions; “What if things stay this way?”, “How can I stay safe? How can I keep

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Permaculture For Beginners (part 1)

‘Permaculture’ is one of those words we often see and hear when reading about gardening. It’s like some sort of mythical desert oasis…you’ve heard about it, you know it’s a good thing, but you can’t put your finger on what it really is and what it looks like in the real world. So what is

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3 Easy Ways to Fix Clay Soil

It’s no secret that clay soil is far from the gardeners friend. Poor drainage is a problem, and when the soil is waterlogged your plant roots become starved of oxygen. If the soil is too dry, it can be hard to dig and plant roots can’t grow through it. So how do we fix clay

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How to Test & Improve Your Garden Soil

Soil is a mixture of minerals, air, water, plus a variety of living and dead organic matter. The purpose of soil is as a growing medium for plants, a regulator of water supplies, recycler of raw materials, habitat for soil organisms, and as a landscaping and engineering medium. When it comes to gardening, we need

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Soil Minerals: What are they & how do I get the balance right?

Picture yourself standing in your garden. Looking around, right to left, up and down, admiring the results of all your hard work. Beautiful flowers, deep green leaves, fruit on the way to ripening….BUT WAIT! You spot one plant that is shrivelled, sick, and covered in bugs. Turn the other way, and there’s one with yellow

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Self Sufficiency- What is it & how to get started

So, you are thinking of taking that idealistic step away from the modern mainstream, and moving towards self sufficiency. It’s a term we’ve heard a lot this past year, but it’s not always clear what it really means. And is it realistic these days? We all have work, families, responsibilities, vehicles and modern technology that

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Carbon Capture & Its Applications on Coal Power Plants

  From the mid-20th century, mankind started to realise the great impact of our industrial activities on the environment. The relationship between industrialization and environmental degradation is one that is hard to ignore. In as much as mankind needs to grow industrially and economically, we also need to preserve our resources and the environment in

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Honey Bee Crisis – Let’s Find a Solution

With honey bees in dangerous decline around the world, how are crops going to be pollinated in the future? This is a major concern for scientists and farmers because if honeybees die out humans might starve! Whilst honey bees have been declining year after year since the 1940’s a certain bee here in Australia has

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Plastic Bag Ban – Great Excuse to Grow Your Own Food

The Plastic Bag Ban will commence on 1st July 2018 around Australia – anyone caught with or using a plastic shopping bag after this date will be ridiculed via a severe public "bagging out" before being jailed for environmental vandalism.  The first part of the sentence above is true – the plastic bag ban will

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How to Fix a Brown Lawn After the Cold Winter

As the winter season makes way for spring, your lawn will probably have brown patches of grass. This is a common occurrence, but there is a variety of solutions since the causes are just as numerous. Even if you cannot pinpoint the primary cause of the grass discolouration, the following steps should ease the problem.

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Unsustainable Population Growth – The Human Mouse Plague

Australian millionaire businessman Dick Smith, founder of Dick Smith's Electronics, has launched a campaign (link further down the page) against the common notion touted mostly by governments and big business that endless economic growth linked to population growth is the key to world peace, increased collective wealth, and equality. Instead, he claims that continued population

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Take a Closer Look at Your Food Garden for Beneficial Animals

Heard of the saying, see the forest for the trees? Well, how about see the animals for the vegetables..? Frog on a radish leaf  in a raised garden bed (image above) And I'm not just talking about pests either because whilst most gardeners look for pests when they inspect their plants it's often the good animals that

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Ethnic Minority – Woman with Child in Sapa Vietnam

The ethnic minorities in the Sapa region are often looked down upon by the main Vietnamese population, well that's the distinct impression we got from our own observations and comments from our personal tour guide. But despite, or perhaps because of, the harsher living conditions and social isolation these minority groups were often classically attired

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What’s the Difference Between Biltong & Beef Jerky?

With the rise in popularity of this amazing beef snack called biltong you might be wondering how it is different to beef jerky? Well, in a few words I can sum it up like this… Biltong is similar to beef jerky but nothing like it.   The other day, I was shocked to see Biltong

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Harper’s Mansion Self-Sufficiency Homestead Food Garden

When visiting my in-laws last holiday season down in NSW (Bowral to be exact) we went on a small day tour out to a winery for lunch and on the way, we stopped in at Harper's Mansion.     A really brief history about Harper's Mansion in Berrima Situated in Berrima approximately 125 kms south of

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