Yard and Garden Design Day held last Saturday the 26th of September was an interactive and informative experience. Our special guests for the day, Charles and Jolene Otway from Terra Perma Design were filled with knowledge and expertise on how to turn our guests gardens into vibrant and cohesive ecosystems. The main theme for the day was balance in nature and how to transfer that into your garden design. Charles and Jolene were excellent is showcasing through some very interactive activities (involving A LOT of string and people), how everything in our environment is linked together and when one piece is missing it causes the whole system to collapse.
Everything's connected

Everything’s connected

Systems collapse when the connection is lost!

Systems collapse when the connection is lost!

“(The Yard and Garden Design Day) gave me a great planning tool with good consideration about how to best set my garden out,” said one participant. How did they do that? Participants were given a layout of their individual garden. Designing stages were then broken up into three main parts:
  • Orientation. Where is the garden situated and what permanent structures are already in place. This also includes existing trees and their heights and who are the significant shade producers.
  • Natural energies. Primarily focused on the sun orientation and how it changes through seasons. Wind and rainfall and seasonal changes are also important factors to consider.
  • Pathways. Finally was the mapping of important pathways around the garden. This includes the pathways taken to and from work as well as frequent pathways taken such as walking the dog or getting the mail.
From these key points, participants were able to get a good sense of how to look at their site, and see how the needs, characteristics, and outputs of different garden elements fit together to create their dream garden.
Getting into the Design Process

Getting into the Design Process

  Most importantly Charles and Jolene helped our participants to recognise the best ways to work with nature and their surrounds to create a garden they had always envisioned. “They (Charles and Jolene) gave perspective of how to get from what is to what is wanted” commented one participant. Charles and Jolene’s knowledge and communication with the participants was a stand out for the day. “The presenters were fantastic, explained topics thoroughly and in “layman’s” terms” explained another participant.
Learning interactively

Learning interactively

On behalf of Katanning Landcare and the community and those involve we send a huge thank you to Charles and Jolene from Terra Perma Designs and thoroughly look forward to having them back for Eco-Week in 2016! For more information on how to design your own garden or want a session with Terra Perma Designs yourself have a browse through our links below.   Terra Perma Design Workshop Notes: http://www.terraperma.com.au/free-workshop-notes.html Slideshow notes from the Yard and Garden Design Day http://19138605-606912456643090389.preview.editmysite.com/uploads/1/9/1/3/19138605/katanning_landcare__urban_block_design___sept_29_final.pdf Further Reading:
  • Mars, Ross – The Basics of Permaculture Australia (WA)
  • Weiseman, Halsey and Ruddock – Integrated Forest Gardening – A complete guide to polycultures and plant guilds in Permaculture Systems
  • Lancaster, Brad – Water Harvesting Volume 1 and 2
  • Hussey, B.M.J; Keighery, G.J.; Dodd, J.; Lloyd, S.G.; and Cousens, R.D. Western Weeds – A guide to weeds of Western Australia Australia (WA)
  • Hemenway, Toby – Gaia’s Garden – A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture USA
  • Nugent, Jeff – Permaculture Plants
  • Shipard, Isabell – How can I use Herbs in my Daily Life Australia (Qld)
  • Fanton, Michel and Jude – The Seed Saver’s Handbook Australia (NSW)
  • Lowenfels, Jeff and Lewis, Wayne – Teaming with Microbes – The Organic Gardener’s Guide to the Soil Food Web