25. The Garden of Eatin’

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Your Host: Ross Nolly

Address: 255 Skinner Road, RD 23, Stratford

Property Size:  1.2 hectares

Opening Hours:

  • Fri 1 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sat 2 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sun 3 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Fri 8 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sat 9 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sun 10 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

Tours, Talks & Demonstrations:

  • Talk: Natural chicken feeding, 3 & 10 Nov at 1 pm

  • Property Tours: Informal tours on days open.

Property Description:

Ross lives on a 1.2-ha lifestyle block that was once part of his parents dairy farm. There he tries to live a simple self-sufficient life growing, farming and hunting most of his food using permaculture and organic principles.

 

A major aim is to not only grow enough and preserve food for himself, but to grow food for the animals in an attempt to form closed nutrient recycling and cycles. Building up organic matter in the soil is also a key focus aligned to this philosophy.

Ross has a developing food forest, wild herbs swales, orchards and hugelkultur. His animal companions include rare breed chickens and ducks, along side two precocious kune kune pigs, who have decided that he is their staff. 

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26. Lear on Patea

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Your Host: Mary Bourke

Address: 12a Lear Street, Stratford

Property Size: 1200 m2

Purchases Available: Herb plants and products, native plants, arts and craft

Opening Hours:

  • Fri 1 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sat 2 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sun 3 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Fri 8 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sat 9 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sun 10 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

Tours, Talks & Demonstrations:

  • Property Tours: 10:30 am & 2:30 pm on days open

Property Description:

Bounded on three sides by the Patea River, this property comprises a series of “rooms” with a mix of ornamental shrubberies, native planting, food forest, espaliered fruit trees, herbs, fruit trees, citrus grove, a berry cage and dedicated vegetable garden.

 

There is also room for a worm farm, beehives and a couple of donkeys, who earn their keep providing company, entertainment, and plenty of manure, which the gardens love.

Rocks form the basis of hard landscaping as they are an on-site resource. Roof water is collected into two water butts, one supplying the donkey troughs and one water for the shadehouse/potting shed. All mulch and compost is sourced and made from materials on site, while Mary makes range of preserves, jellies, jams and herbal products from garden excess.

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27. Piwakawaka Eddy

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Your Host: Elizabeth Proulx

Address: 602 Pembroke Road, Stratford

Property Size: 1.4 hectares

Opening Hours:

  • Sat 2 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sun 3 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

  • Sat 9 Nov, 10 am - 4 pm

Tours, Talks & Demonstrations:

  • Property Tours: Informal tours on days open.

Property Description:

Liz has 1.4 hectares of land bordered by a meandering stream. The property is being developed on permaculture principles, with vegetable beds close to the house while the orchard and soft berries are positioned further away. Veggie beds are shaped to fit naturally into the landscape, with a keyhole design to prevent compaction of soil. The stream margins are being planted with natives to create more bird habitat. The fruit trees have plant guilds of comfrey, tansy and borage around their base to support health and productivity.

 

The stream margins are being planted with natives to create more bird habitat. Tree Lucerne is used in the young orchard to give the fruit trees a nursery environment as they establish, with companion plants planted around them.  

Liz's small house is a converted shed, with recycled materials used where possible. Her home is off grid, powered by a 3.4kw solar array with battery storage, and has a composting toilet.

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