As Rob took us around his garden, I regretted not carrying my voice-recorder - Rob was passionate about his garden and clearly a wealth of information. He showed us an abundance of fruit trees in his orchard -including figs, gooseberry, plums, apples, fig plums, custard apple, loquats, oranges, lemons, and even a Mexican apple.
There were also banana trees, planted on the edge of a mini-swale to capture and retain water.
Rob also showed us a native tree called the Knobwood Tree or umnungwamabele in Xhosa - which literally translates to “White Woman’s Breasts!”
Set on sea-facing slopes, the garden was clearly structured into zones, with the vegetable and herb garden closest to the house, the orchard further on, and the wild zone on the outskirts, home to an indigenous forest and mist belt.
Rob tells me that he’d utilised native plants in his design - for instance the Rhus tree is usually cut down - when in fact it’s a mist-producing plant that provides shade, natural habitat, 100 sq metre water catchment as well as leaf mulch.
He pointed out an orange tree growing naturally amongst the Rhus trees, telling us that he doesn't interfere with nature, rather allowing things to grow where they please, and reaping the rewards.
Despite the fact that Bathurst has suffered from an extended drought, Rob’s garden is a green, verdant slice of heaven.
Permaculture in Palestine: This article is about permaculture in Palestine as I attend a PDC at the Marda Permaculture Farm in the West Bank
Permaculture in East London: Discover Permaculture in East London, Anna Andrews' 2-year labour of love, and she'll share some of her success stories, including composting, Mandala garden beds, greywater harvesting and no-dig garden beds.
New! CommentsHave your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
Eco-travel & Lifestyles
Hi, my name is Melissa and I created this site together with photographer Christopher List to help spread awareness about green lifestyles and travel, so everyone can learn how easy it is to live in a sustainable way. Enjoy!
I wasn't sure what a permaculture design course was about, until I read through Melissa's fantastic blog! I've signed up and soon I'll be a PDC graduate too.
Kelly Richardson - Arizona
The link between personal responsibility and preserving our environment is becoming increasingly clear to me. Reading up on simple ways to be more eco-friendly in my life and travels has really helped me practice what I preach.
Dennis Howley - Namibia
I can't wait to follow Melissa and Chris' adventures in the Middle East and Africa. You guys inspire me!
Khalid Seif - Dubai