Sunday, December 4, 2011

GARDENS BEFORE CIRCLES





Door by Brian

I am quite impress with myself, I have over 40 blog entries, but then it is easy to write if you have a lot to write about. I have notice that my blog gets the most attention when I write about gardening. I have also started a Green Tip for the Day section on my blog; you can see that top left. 

Imagine somebody gives you a free Perm Culture course and then they give you this big space where a garden was once laid out, which means there are swales, a seedling house and some seeds and seedling and you are allowed to do whatever you want. This is basically what happened to me. That is such a privilege, thanks Tim. The fun part is to decide where to put what and why. 
You should always have at least 3 good reasons for planting something in a specific place and in my opinion aesthetics is as good a reason as any. For instance I planted Peppermint at the kitchen drain, my reasons – it is nice to have your herbs close to the kitchen and peppermint is bushy so it hides the drain (aesthetics) area and ants do not like peppermint, so they stay away from the kitchen.  Mints are also one of the few herbs that likes wet feet (like a lot of water) and again the drain area is perfect.

We have 5 volunteers here at the moment. Greg is still here, I do not see that much of him, he got over the shock of getting flooded and he is mostly helping Tim with Cobbing or Niki with making our new sign for the front gate. Then there is Pascal, he is mostly helping Brian to hang doors and fix things around the retreat area that KD is busy building. They have both been here for a while and are quite settled in. Brian seems to be kind of part of the family, but he does not live here, he use to, but now he just built here.


Our friend Brian

Then we have 3 new arrivals. There is Rita/Joy I only met her this morning, I think we are going to get along very well, she also likes the garden. Then there is Chris and Bruce, I actually do not know that much about them either, they are South Africa, form KZN, they are spending most of their time with Tim, learning about Perma Culture.

I will have to see where I can get some extra hands, we need to weed!  Sometimes weeding is fun, it is a fantastic way to get rid of anger, frustration and stress, but I find it boring when I am not frustrated or angry, so I pull weeds when I have anger to deal with. Sound crazy but it works and from the state of the garden it is clear that my stress levels are very low.

We had a “heart circle” the other day. It is really just a space where everybody gets together and shares where they are at and what they are doing. Sound very nosy and my first reaction was not very positive, but I realized that my reaction was based on conditioning. I grew up in a very conservative Afrikaans family and in Afrikaans culture (especially for the men) it is a sign of weakness to show or share emotion and to “bear your soul” is unthinkable. So, I ignored my conditioned behavior and ended up hearing what other people are planning and doing and thinking, but in the end is does get a bit long and boring and you do feel obligated to say something, even if you do not want to. You use the talking stick method, I have explained this earlier in the blog, shortly - he who holds the stick is the only one allowed to talk. Conditioning or not, I have no intention of repeating this experience. 

There are a lot of new people and some old ones came back so the total number of people here at the moment is 18. 



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