Community Projects, Urban Projects — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor July 27, 2009
On Sunday, July 19, I thought I’d go along to the Gold Coast’s first Permablitz. In this case it was a mini-blitz – just working on a small piece of a residential section – a good idea for Permablitz newbies. But, despite it being a debut for the Coast, we had a good turnout with around 20 people showing up to help out.
…a few hours later
Leah Galvin (below right, discussing the site design plan) was the champion here, getting the word out and organising the event.
Kandy (below right, contemplating the work ahead) was the lucky recipient of the Gold Coast’s first Perma-makeover. The yard certainly looked like it could use a little attention.
It wasn’t long before the dozen or so elves were rolling up their sleeves and working through The List:
Pretty soon people were cutting, sawing, digging, moving sleepers, soaking and laying cardboard for mulch, pouring wood chips and compost and planting seedlings…
… until the little universe of soil restorers (weeds) we saw before was no more, and a decided feeling of organised peace descended on what could now be called a garden.
Even the Gold Coast Bulletin sent a photographer and journalist over to take a peek. It was obvious they weren’t accustomed to people getting excited about mulch and wood chips, as they looked decidedly non-plussed. But then, this is an area that could otherwise be described as ‘hedonism central’. It’s normally known for sports cars, bikinis and hell-raising, rather than raised beds and herb spirals.
The atmosphere was very relaxed. Spurts of work combined with good old fashioned socialising, and also notable incidents of more experienced permaculturists sharing useful knowledge with newbies along the way – one of the major benefits of such events.
And, food even came through in waves.
The day ended a little abruptly, as we ran out of soil. For this reason I didn’t get a final ‘after’ shot of the day, and didn’t make the YouTube clip of the event I was intending. But Kandy was fully happy with the transformation of her yard. A little soil and a smidgen of extra labour and that section would easily be pronounced complete.
I look forward to seeing another, and another, and another. A domino effect of blitzes across the world could seriously mitigate many of the world’s problems.
If you live in the Gold Coast area, and want to get involved in subsequent Permablitzes, email Leah on leg30 (at) hotmail.com
The Permablitz site was in Burleigh Heads, just minutes from
the Gold Coast’s Surfers Paradise(seen in distance)
Photos © Craig Mackintosh