“What are you harvesting this week?” is a question that friends, neighbours and family members who know about my garden project, ask me frequently. My answers vary between raspberries, peas, beans, ginger, lemons, lettuce, turmeric, tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, rhubarb, herbs, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, zucchini and more – the list is long. Observing the variations and climatic conditions in one’s garden can really make a permaculture project quite viable in an urban situation.
Mindfulness became a trendy word in the past decade or so. What does being mindful actually mean? It relates to being thoughtful, aware and present. And this can be applied to everything I do in my daily life. WE CONSUMERS HAVE LOTS OF POWER!!! If we make mindful decisions about what we buy, we can have an enormous influence on the state of our environment, our planet and our own wellbeing in all its forms.
One of the best life hacks I have found was from a friend a few years ago recommending the use of bicarbonate of soda as a substitute for modern cosmetic deodorants. I have been using it now for five years and it’s just fab, so let me share with you this simple way to save some money, create less waste and stop harming your skin with cosmetics.
“But does it not smell??!!!” This is always, accompanied by a very sceptical face expression, the first question I get when I tell people about my roof-top compost. Straight answer, no – it has absolutely no odour at all. So let’s get that out the way to leave your minds clear for digesting (excuse the pun) the benefits and know-how of urban composting.
“Life begins outside of your comfort zone!” is written in my notebook as a daily reminder. It’s easy to get stuck inside a bubble where everything is familiar and to leave this comfortable space I need trust. Trust in myself, trust in others and trust in the Universe. Also being open to experiments, change and adventures and believing that it will all turn out just fine. This is not always easy, there are better days than others.
This week I want to talk about how to build furniture out of wooden pallets and at the same time take some steps to becoming more sustainable. The increased reuse of anything, and also the purchase of any second hand goods for that matter, continues to create an encouraging cultural paradigm shift in the way we approach the consumption of materials.
For anybody starting a permaculture project, whether a potted roof garden like mine or even large ploughed orchard, it is time to celebrate when you hear the sound of bees busy pollinating - your micro-ecosystem has begun. Carpenter bees, like their work colleagues Mason bees, are prolific pollinators and a single bee can carry out the work of a 100 ordinary honey bees.