Monthly meetings held at the ‘Ku-ring-gai Centre for Seniors'
259 Pacific Highway Lindfield NSW 2070 on the third Monday
of the month (except Jan)  - all welcome
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President's Report - Cat Dorey

One of the questions I’m often asked as an environmental campaigner is how I stay motivated and optimistic, when there is so much bad news out there. Well, I’ll be honest, this month has been pretty tough!

Abbott and his friends are intent on reducing the influence that science has on decision-making in Australia, by slashing funding to scientific institutions and peddling misinformation through mainstream media – especially with regard to climate change. As a scientist, I find this terrifying.

This past month we have two reminders of our future if we continue to ignore our scientists’ warnings – the early and terrible start to the NSW bushfire season and the devastating typhoon in the Philippines are extreme weather events that will become more common as the planet warms up.

Meanwhile, down in Hobart, an international meeting has again failed to reach agreement to set up two vast marine sanctuaries in the Antarctic waters – vital to help protect biodiversity from fishing and climate change. Despite huge support, Russia, Ukraine and China refused to back the plans.

And 30 of my friends and colleagues have now spent over 50 days in Russian prison cells, with no end in sight. They have been branded pirates and hooligans for trying to protect the Artic – and the climate –from the oil industry. Please sign our petition at

So what keeps me going? The amazing people and communities around me, inspiring and creating change in hundreds of ways.

Inspired by Martyn Robinson at last month’s PSN meeting, Chris and I converted two large pots into ponds for our noisy frogs, and we have all the parts for making a home for micro-bats. Thanks to the Hornsby group, Fagin Park ecogarden now has an espalier citrus tree garden and over 60 seedlings planted. At a 50th birthday in Woy Woy, I met a great group of people who’d met each other through a local food group and environmental centre that my friends had set up , every one of them creating a better planet – growing their own food, reducing waste, promoting cycling, etc.

Did you know that there are over 480 Transition Town initiatives around the world that are officially registered on the Transition Town website? And this doesn’t include ‘unofficial ones’, community gardens, local environment groups, permaculture groups… All over the world, despite our governments’ failures, positive change is happening. It just doesn’t make the mainstream news.

I think one of the most important things we can as PSN is to show that there is another way to live, to give people hope, andto inspire them to stand with us. We have to spread the word and we have to do it fast!

What will you do this month? Who will you inspire?

14 Nov: Lane Cover & North Sydney Council Grant Writing Seminar

Learn what funding bodies are looking for when they assess grant applications, what do you need to be saying?

Speakers are from the Department of Sport and Recreation and the NSW Community Building Partnership program. 

17 Nov: PSN Ku-Ring-Gai Local Group November Meeting

The usual meeting for November will be on the third Sunday, not the second as is usual. 

18 Nov: PSN Monthly Meeting 

Learn why dirt, poo and worms are so important to life! 

Peter Rutherford, Senior Ecologist at Kimbriki Eco House and Garden at Terry Hills, will talk about why he loves to get his hands dirty.

For further details please click here. 

23 Nov: Living Skills: Natural Skin and Hair Care Products Workshop

Pat Collins, the famous herbalist from the Hunter Valley, will share with us natural healing and cosmetic product. 

24 Nov: Monthly Permabee - Big Wicking Beds! 

This month's permabee we will be going on a bit of an excursion out to Glenorie, half hour nor-west of Hornsby. 

We will be installing three wicking garden beds....

Here is a quote from one of the new attendees at the last Permabee:

"On Sunday 27 October, I managed to get along to my first Permabee. The blitz was an initial reconnaissance of the site at the St.Ives Wildflower Garden, where we will be creating a permaculture teaching garden. 

Having just completed an online Permaculture Design Certificate, it was a great experience for me to put the principles into practice. I now have some practical skills I can apply to my own garden. The people I met there were lovely - it was a really good atmosphere and I'll definitely be joining another Permabee soon!" - Belinda Bean

16 Dec: PSN Monthly Meeting / AGM with Costa appearing as Santa!

Join us at the Lindfield meeting on 16 December to celebrate the year that was, with Costa appearing as our Green Santa!

Traditionally we invite several members to share with us a transformation of their garden and/ or life. We will also be hearing about some new projects we are commencing and holding our AGM: so if you have some great ideas for 2014 and want to help put them into action, please consider joining the team: there are many different ways you can use your skills to help PSN. 

There will also be an appearance by Costa as our Green Santa, possibly awarding prizes, and the evening will conclude with a shared supper – everybody please bring your favourite dish of food (and something to eat from/ with!).

What's Happening at Hornsby Local Group - November

A great day was had by Permaculture Hornsby, helping out the Fagan Park Eco Garden for our monthly meet-up, which was Sunday, 3 November (a week earlier than usual). The day started for some at 9:30 am with a compost tea demo by Peter Rutherford of Kimbriki EcoGarden, followed by a shared lunch and then some hands-on experience helping with jobs around the garden, the major project for us being the planting of two orange trees to be espaliered around a large green water tank in the garden, with attendant companion plants. Those who had not visited before were amazed at how lovely the area is.

For this project, grass had to be removed and a small retaining wall along the path put in place to stop soil spilling down the short slope, and a very artistic wall it ended up! While about four people helped with this project to start off, removing the grass and enriching the soil, the remainder carried water to the site to soften the turf and straw for mulch, or planted out some seedlings in the annual beds of the Eco Garden. By the end of the day all hands were on deck to plant out companion plants around the orange trees – at least 20 – which were done in no time…many hands make light work. Chris Suttie had a very natty way of planting the orange trees, which came in a long, largish black plastic surround rather than a pot. He put the tree in the dug hole with its plastic on, surrounding it with compost/soil and, after firming down, pulled out the tree, removed the plastic and replanted it in a very neat hole. The writer had never seen this done before, so it was a great learning experience. Tanya Meir from Hornsby Council, who co-ordinates the Eco Garden and suggested the project to the group, was hands-on throughout our almost-four hours of companionable work. She was greatly appreciative of the group’s skills and time to make the project a reality.

Notes from Lucinda: many thanks to Jannine, Kathleen, Chris G, Cat, Chris S, Kerry and Deb for the good work and the many laughs and for Tanya who looked after us all and got stuck into the work alongside us. Jannine brought along the Hornsby Seed Library and members were able to take advantage of this valuable resource and, by growing on the seeds, will be continuing a viable source of heritage and heirloom seeds. If you would like to try growing some vegetables or herbs from seed and to become a Seed Guardian, please contact Jannine, or come along to the next Permaculture Hornsby gathering.

The group who attended on Sunday are keen to maintain the area and/ or to help out with other mini-projects or general gardening tasks as required. To this end, we thought we might form a little group of interested volunteers who could meet mid-week every month or two for a convivial spot of perma-gardening. If you think you may be interested in this initiative/ project, please contact Lucinda


Gardens for International Permaculture Day 2014

Do you have a Permaculture garden that you think is almost ready to display to the public?  Would you like some help in getting it there?  

PSN wishes to get involved in International Permaculture Day next year (the first Sunday in May).  This is a celebration and a demonstration of Permaculture and should be a big event in our annual calendar.  

We are looking for members who have opened their garden in the past, either for that event or for Sustainable House Day, and for members who are just venturing into showing people what they have done in their garden.  

So please, if you think you might be interested, contact Shows Team leader Lucinda.  We have several lines of support, from advertising to Permabees, to help you show the public what Permaculture can do for them.  

If you have any other ideas you would like to investigate, such as running a workshop on some aspect of Permaculture, or putting on a film night, having a Permablitz on a street verge - anything - why not see if together we can make it happen!

Building Community       

One of the requests from members is to create a spirit of community among fellow permies.  One way we can do this is to get to know a bit more about each other.  Each member has a profile on the website.  We have recently updated the profile to include some questions to help us learn more about our members: eg what sort of things you would like from PSN.  Our request to you is: please update your profile to help that process!

“Do you have ideas on how PSN can best recruit and encourage members in their Permaculture journey?"

Ed's Corner!

PSN welcomes your stories, tip, tricks and knowledge for inclusion in "our" monthly newsletter. Please send them to at least 10 days prior to the regular PSN Monthly meeting. 

Looking forward to hearing from you all!


Re-Use Roundabout Table

Re-Use Roundabout table: if you have Things you no longer need, or Stuff you think may be of use to others, please bring it along to the next PSN meeting at Lindfield, to the Re-Use Roundabout!  

There are only two rules: if yo think you got a bargain (by taking useful Stuff from the table), please consider a small donation.  And if any Stuff you brought along has not gone by the time you pleave, please take it with you. 



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