President's Report
It's great to see the year starting with some fantastic activities underway. Mushrooming is proving very popular with Margaret taking approx 30 people out this Saturday. If you can't make it, another one is being scheduled for April.

I was really pleased to see the energy and enthusiasm that went into the table discussions to help our team leaders and committee develop programs and plans you want.  I've asked each team leader to come back to the next month's meeting and highlight their plans for the year ahead with the wider group to allow everyone a voice.

In local groups there is a lot happening and I can only encourage you to get involved at a local level where you can make a real difference and learn a lot.  Welcome Richard Gould into the role of Willougby local group leader and well done on getting the first meeting organsied for Sunday March 24th. Details are on the web
Hornsby has a full program underway and Northern Beaches had over 200 people at another Costa presentation with another large event planned for March.   It was great to see the Northern Beaches group also play host to "The Sustainable Van" - a social enterprise out of Bondi Transition group.  They have run really value priced tours around the south coast and north coast permies and from all reports they enjoyed their tour north of the harbour (all passports stamped and approved!).

The Easter Show is coming up and Penny Pyett is taking a stand there, and also handing out information on permaculture.  If anyone would like to assist Penny through the show, and help show goers understand more about permaculture and PSN, give her a buzz on 0409010275.

Unfortunately, despite considerable effort from Monique, and original agreement, the planned talk by Cuban Roberto Perez will not go ahead at next week's meeting, which is disappointing.  So instead, I want to play a recent TED talk on Guerilla gardening in South Central Los Angeles, and open up discussion about creating a permaculture garden at the Lindfield Seniors Centre as a show piece - how, why, what, .. thoughts and ideas.  I have opened up conversation with council, but we have a long way to go... however, I think it would be a great project to showcase our wares!

PSN Monthly Meeting - Monday 18 Mar 2013 @ 7:00pm
This Monday's meet we'll be watching a TED talk on Guerilla Gardening in Los Angeles, followed by a discussion on permifying the Lindfield Seniors Centre.
Doors open at 7pm. Lindfield Community Centre, 259 Pacific Hwy, Lindfield. Just a few minutes walk from Lindfield railway station.
Thanks in advance to the Hornsby Group who are providing supper

Don't Forget to BYO Mug   
Please bring your own reusable mug/cup to all meetings.
PSN Monthly Meetings are held on the 3rd Monday of every month.
Doors open at 7pm. Lindfield Community Centre, 259 Pacific Hwy, Lindfield. Just a few minutes walk from Lindfield railway station.

Permabee - Sunday 17th March - Croydon Park   
The next permabee will be at Deborah Bryce’s place in Croydon Park.
Deborah had a permabee some time ago and, as is the way of things, some tweaking and rearranging is needed. It’s a small garden but this is one permabee that has something for everyone, including several plants needing new homes.
In the front garden we will be installing a new herb spiral that I’m constructing “pre-fab” out of corrugated iron. As well there are some lavender plants to come out to be replaced by a citrus tree from the side garden and the addition of some new plants.
Around to the side of the house we will be installing a 2.6m raised garden bed, but before we can do this we need to dig up the roots of the old banana patch. These are the first of the plants looking for a new home.
In the raised garden bed we will be using a variation on a hugelkultur design by placing some old logs in the base of the raised garden. We will also be doing some pruning back of an avocado tree at the side and putting in some natives towards the back.
Other jobs include transplanting some orange trees into pots & digging up some figs that will need new homes, along with some lemon grass. Two paw paw trees will replace the lemon grass, and an apple tree (still in its pot) also needs a new home.  In exchange for all that booty we need of course, your labour but if you could donate some worms or hessian bags for the worm farm that would be the icing on the cake (metaphorically speaking).
As always think of OH&S, hats, gloves, boots, sunscreen & smiles. If you have your own favourite tools bring them along too.
Finally on the day we will be calling on volunteers to help look after the catering (food & drinks provided by Deborah) and someone to take photos to document the work.

It should be fun & informative so please register and join in with everyone.
See you all there.
Lawrence Kalainia Kamani Aki and Kawika Foster 
Northern Beaches Local Group - Thursday 21st March 
Hawaiian elder Lawrence Kalainia Kamani Aki and Kawika Foster will speak on Hawaiian traditions of living sustainably with the land and on traditional food growing systems, including growing kalo/taro/yam, a staple crop sacred to the indigenous Hawaiians. (Taro can also be grown in our local area.)
Kumu Paʻa Lawrence Kalainia Kamani Aki of Halawa Valley, Molokai - lineage-holder of 50 generations of traditional Hawaiian teachings from the school or ‘Halau’ named ‘Mana O Kahiko’ (Spirit Power of our Ancestors) will be in Sydney for the first and last time. Kawika Foster is of the 51st generation.

Traditionally this ancient Hawaiian knowledge was transmitted by story, chant and hula. This school of learning is dedicated to preserving and sharing the traditional ancestral teachings of this lineage.  

These teachings are from the island of Molokai, the island from which Bill Mollison drew much inspiration when co-developing the principles of Permaculture in Australia which has since become a global movement.
Places are strictly limited and bookings are essential.

Suggested donation: $5

Organized by Permaculture Northern Beaches local group
Supported by Warringah Council


Raffle 1st prize:
GroWall vertical garden installation (value $250 from Atlantis Corp) and free installation by Sustainability Systems and Services will be raffled on the night. Grow your plants in the smallest of spaces.

Click here to download PDF flyer
PSN Open Garden - Berowra - Sunday 24th March 
After visiting so many inspiring gardens over the past few months, I was somewhat hesitant about opening my own.
My garden is not “permaculture perfect” and I am not a teacher of permaculture. I’ve planted a lot of fruit trees, I have a frog pond and I have 3 lovely chooks who love being with me.
Basically my garden is a reflection of me. I like colour and scents and I‘ve got that. I love my garden and I hope you will too, so come and see for yourself.
Please register to attend this event or email Address will be provided on registration. 
PSN Education Update 
This year’s education committee met for the first time on Sunday 3rd March. We represented an eclectic group of age groups, attitudes and interests. This proved to work in our favour as we fleshed out the beginnings of a plan for the education team.
We were inspired by the work that Permaculture Northern Beaches has been doing with a grant they received from one of their local councils. They are running a series of highly successful public talks at the Manly Warringah Leagues Club, the tickets for which seem to be selling out like hot cakes. In addition, they are writing a set of Facts Sheets that the council can use to refer residents to if they are interested in how to get started on various permaculture type activities.
On the first topic of lectures, we realised that PSN already has a wealth of experts in all sorts of areas – some of whom haven’t even noticed that they are experts! We are hoping that these valuable Permies would like to share their experiences,  thoughts and hopes with all of us giving talks at the Monday night monthly meetings. Already, some great talks are getting underway from members who have approached the education team. So if you have an expertise or experience, please contact me either by email or in person on Monday evening, 18th March.
Many in our group are keen to be part of the activity of updating the current Permaculture Facts Sheets. We anticipate that they will be widely used both in hardcopy form to hand out to interested people at show stalls and in e-copy linked to the PSN Website to inform members and non-members alike. Again, it is a big job so if you would enjoy being part of this project we would be very interested in hearing from you.
The third inspiration sparked from the activities of Permaculture Northern Beaches is the link between local permaculture groups and their local municipal council. Questions arise such as: “How extensive is the sustainability section in your local library?” “What is council’s policy on composting toilets, greywater recycling, rainwater harvesting, earthship construction?” “What can our local permaculture group do for council?” You may already know the answer to some of these questions. Or, you might feel like approaching your local council about these matters. Or, you may have thought of some other relevant questions to ask. If any of these things are the case with you, please get in touch – we would like to hear from you.
As you can see the education team is energizing up for a productive and entertaining year. Hope to have further updates for you in the next newsletter.
Lane Cove Group - PermaPatch Honey
February was honey harvesting time at the Patch. We have an arrangement with Doug Purdie to share the honey produced in our community garden. Doug supplies the hives and tends to the bees which are located on the roof of a car port which also doubles as a meeting space.
Members gathered to jar the honey, label and individually date the finished product. This year we jarred 195 bottles of pure unadulterated Sydney honey. Most of the honey is sold to members with the revenue raised ploughed back into the community garden. Some of the projects in the pipeline are; construction of 10 individual garden plots for people who may have some form of physical disability (from wood treated with bees wax); another 10,000 ltr water tank, and an industrial scale aqua phonics system. The latter is particularly exciting as we will be growing produce in vertical spaces and harvesting fish.
For those that are interested in having a look at the garden, PermaPatch is located on the cnr of Pacific Highway & Mowbray Rd Artarmon (behind the church and the heritage cemetery) and you can park on site from either road. While the facility is gated it is always open.
For those that may be interested in PermaPatch honey, please indicate your interest by email to The price is $10 for a 300gm jar.
Hornsby Local Group News 
Thank you to everyone for a great get together on Saturday.  A big welcome to Danielle, Heather and Bruce.
PEST CONTROL TIPS AND TRICKS  - Fact Sheets:    Notwithstanding incredible wit and hilarity, Saturday’s  get together under Lucinda’s facilitation produced great information which will be made available as serious fact sheets in a few days.  Thanks to everyone involved for their contributions and to Heather for formatting.
The meeting was preceded by a small morning working party demolishing the existing banana trees (thanks Terry and Bruce) and the rest of us preparing a different space for the new banana circle.  Jacqui provided a delicious lunch, and the main ‘meeting’ got under way at 2pm.  After afternoon tea we performed a mini permabee and  Bruce and Shawn dug and continued the good work of the new banana circle to the point of planting the bananas – which Jacqui did after we left and says it looks ‘awesome’.
A further outcome of the get together is the PSN Hornsby RECIPE BOOK which we have been threatening to produce for some time.  The inspiration has been the amazing afternoon teas.  It’s now under way thanks to Jenny and Heather and although it will be full of priceless pearls we think we can keep the cost to under $50 (just joking about the $50). 
CLAY FOR COB OVENS:   We are in need of clay for building cob ovens.  If you have any ideas about where we might get hold of some clay please let us know.  Maybe from building sites or roadworks?
All enquiries re PSN Hornsby to  All welcome.
Seed Savers Monthly Meet with Peter Pezzolesi 
Seed Savers meet on the 4th Saturday of every month from 9am-12 noon at the Bidjiwong Community Nursery in Baulkham Hills. (Rear of Ted Horwood Reserve carpark, off Renown Rd, opposite the sports club).
All PSN members are welcome. You'll meet great people, learn a lot about cleaning seed, propagating, how to recognise and save seeds, heaps of growing tips and herbal remedies from Robyn and other knowledgeable people.
We can share our seeds with you and would love for you to share some of your special heirloom seeds with us.
Peter Pezzolesi 
Seed Savers Co-ordinator
Phone 0412 817 605 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0412 817 605 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0412 817 605 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0412 817 605 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0412 817 605 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting   
West Pymble Community Garden
If you’ve been reading about the wonderful world of Community Gardens and thought “Wouldn’t it be great to have a Community Garden nearby where I can be involved?”  Well, now you can, if you’re in the Kuringgai area.
We currently meet every Saturday morning at 10am, and on Tuesdays there is a Kids Gardening group at 330pm during term times. The garden location is Philip Lane, West Pymble.
If you’d like to be added to the newsletter distribution please contact the garden via email:
Or contact Rowan Bouttell at if you have any questions.
The Better Planning Network
The Better Planning Network is a network of local communities, organisations and individuals striving to achieve a fair planning system for NSW. The Better Planning Network is not affiliated with any political party and recognises that:
  1. Community engagement in decision-making is essential at every stage of the planning and development process.
  2. Protecting our natural and cultural heritage is... fundamental to the wellbeing of our communities.
  3. Development must put local residents and communities first.
  4. Strategic planning must be evidence-based.
  5. Development must comply with strategic planning instruments.
  6.  Infrastructure goes hand in hand with development. 
We have a campaign website that you can view at 
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And...Don't forget to tell all your friends and recommend us!
Thanks for your support
Corinne Fisher, Better Planning Network 

Welcome new PSN members
A big welcome to all new members 
New Members’ (and old Members’) guide to the Website now online
The current Permaculture Sydney North website is in need of a little attention so in the interim we have an information guide for both new and existing members to help you find hidden treasures and assist in navigating the website. 
It includes
  • a glossary of terms and abbreviations
  • how to find  - the New Members’ Booklet, DIY Information Sheets
  • how to ‘sign in’ to the website and members’ forum
  • how to register for events
  • regular meeting dates and events
  • and important links 
PSN Facebook
Our facebook page is rocking! It's an excellent place for finding out what's going on in and around our area in a broader context. 
You can interact with like minded permies to share ideas, pose questions, post interesting articles and find out what courses and events are happening in our region and around the world.
If you would like help in setting up a facebook login please email
Words of Wisdom
If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion
Dalai Lama

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