Starting a Community Garden in Dunedin – with Lynn Vare

Dalmore Reserve Community Garden – better known as the Dalmore Reserve Bandit Gardeners is one of the newer community gardens to pop up in Dunedin, New Zealand.

Every community garden of course is run a little differently depending on the desires of the people putting in the work as well as the needs of the wider community. If you are thinking of starting up a community garden, or getting involved with one, then today’s show should provide you with good food for thought!

In early June 2017, I spoke (via internet) to my guest Lynn Vare, resident of Dalmore in Dunedin, and Librarian at Otago Boys High School. Lynn is currently leading the Bandits, following the considerable achievements of founder Kelley Allen.

I’m keen to find out some of the essentials for getting a community garden up and running here in Dunedin. What were some of the challenges faced by this Community garden? What have been some of the expected and unexpected rewards? And what motivates Lynn to commit her energy and efforts to making this garden a success.

To listen to this programme about The Community Garden at Dalmore Reserve please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=5e759e87-a96a-4037-abf9-ec61131769f8

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

For more information –

  • On facebook – Dalmore Reserve Bandit Gardeners
  • Email – Gardenersdalmorecommunitygarden@gmail.com

This show was recorded on the 2nd June 2017 and originally broadcast on the 8th June 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

Lynn Vare, currently leading activities at the Dalmore Reserve Community Garden.

Dalmore Reserve – site of the Bandit’s Dalmore Resesrve Community Garden

Flowers have been planted to attract beneficial pollinators

Healthy spray free veges growing. Views of Dunedin Harbour in the background

All this plant profusion requires some work! Everyone is a volunteer at the Dalmore Community Gardens

And of course everyone efforts are rewarded with fantastic produce to share among volunteers.

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Cycling for Cleaner Air in Belfast – with Sustrans

The Comber Greenway from Comber to Belfast in Northern Ireland is a disused railway track that has been converted to make a combined walk and cycle way. It makes an ideal commuter route to the city, and it’s just one of several initiatives to promote cycling in Northern Ireland.

For this show I have come to East Belfast to meet with employees of Sustrans, a large UK charity that focuses on promoting walking and cycling in the UK. Imagine that! We have no such equivalent organisation in New Zealand.

Sustrans are here to promote the launch of Pedal Perks, which is part of the 4.4 million euro CHIPS project, a wider EU supported initiative that is working to improve air quality by promoting cycling.

This show has been recorded on the 5th June.

To listen to this programme about CYCLING FOR CLEANER AIR IN BELFAST please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=14e2c041-67d9-456e-bcbd-bbe24e6b932c

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

This show was originally broadcast on the 13th July 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

For more information

Claire Polock, Project Manager of CHIPS

Pamela Grove-White, Sustrans Active Travel Officer

 

Promoting the launch of Pedal Perks outside S.D.Bell’s cafe. S.D. Bells & Co Ltd is Ireland’s oldest independent tea importer and coffee roaster.

 

Map of the Comber Greenway, a 7 mile walk/cycleway that takes you into the city of Belfast

My guest Lynn who kindly stopped along the Comber Greenway to chat with me.

The Comber Greenway is a tranquil nature rich way to get to the city of Belfast

 

Protecting the Old Irish Goat – with Joe and Helen

All goats are great! But the Old Irish Goat is particulary special. It is the original landrace breed of goat in Ireland, believed now through genetic testing to go back to the times of neolithic people in Ireland.

The Old Irish Goat Society has been formed to protect it. In June while hitching round the west coast of Ireland, I went in search of this wonderful goat. I was not disappointed!

In Westport in Co. Mayo, I met with Joe O’Grady who is in charge of day to day husbandry for the main captive breeding population. I then went to Mulranny where the Old Irish Goat Society has its headquarters and shop. I spoke with volunteer Helen Walker there.

Join me as I find out more about this wonderful breed, why it is important to our sustainability and resilience, and how important it is that we do more to protect it.

To listen to this programme about PROTECTING THE OLD IRISH GOAT please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=1b8a8337-fd6e-4d74-b79d-ba64fe16a5be

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

This show was originally broadcast on the 27th July 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

For more information

One of the magnificant Old Irish Goats I saw that is part of a breeding programme to assist this landrace breed.

Joe O’Grady who is in charge of day to day husbandry for the goats kept in Westport in Co Mayo.

Helen Walker, Volunteer, with the Old Irish Goat Society – at the Craft Shop in Mulranny

Craft and Information Centre for the Old Irish Goat Society at Mulranny

Mulranny is a picturesque small community. In the hills around Mulranny, Old Irish Goats have been found that are not contaminated with more modern breeds.

Its breeding season for the Old Irish Goats

 

Permaculture in Ireland – with Suzie Cahn

During my year living here in Ireland, I’ve discovered that there  is a energetic and growing interest in Permaculture in this country.

For those of you not familiar with the term– permaculture is a design system for food production (and more) based on ecological principles observed in nature.

The Permaculture Ireland facebook page buzzes daily with postings of questions, information and discussions among its members. To find out more about permaculture in Ireland I have come to Wicklow to visit Suzie Cahn, an experienced and popular Permaculture Design Teacher in this country.

This show was recorded in May 2017.

To listen to this programme about PERMACULTURE IN IRELAND please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=c48d0c61-992a-4f66-89ca-a9f14acee5e3

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

For more information –

  • Join the active Permaculture in Ireland Facebook page – Permaculture Ireland
  • Suzie and Mike Cahn run Carraig Dulra, an educational permaculture property on the hills of Wicklow. Go to http://www.dulra.org/

This show was originally broadcast on the 29th June 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

 

Suzie Cahn, Permaculture Design Teacher, at Carraig Dulra, Wicklow, Ireland

The Classroom for PDC courses and workshops at Carraig Dulra

The re-used glasshouse that extends the growing season here.

One of the gardens

Green Politics in Northern Ireland – with Cllr Dr Georgina Milne

On Eco Living in Action I’m usually pretty focused on the practical actions that we all can take to transition to a sustainable future. But politics, whether we enjoy it or not, is a critical part of our transition.

In the past, Northern Irish politics has been dominated by the nationalist-unionist divide, sidelining big issues  that affect us all – such as biodiversity loss, climate change and the state of our environment. Things have improved a little but there is much progress to be made.

Join me  as I chat with Cllr Dr Georgina Milne who is the Green Party’s representative in the Ormiston district in Belfast City Council. Georgina works as a research scientist at the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute based in Belfast. We talk about the state of Green politics in Northern Ireland, how she is finding life as a politician, and what Northern Ireland needs to focus on to transition to a sustainable future.

This show was recorded on the 26th May 2017.

To listen to this programme about GREEN POLITICS IN NORTHERN IRELAND please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=d58ffea8-3fa5-476a-bc97-074dcf0fe36f

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

For more information –

This show was originally broadcast on the 8th June 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

 

Cllr Dr Georgina Milne, Green Party representative for the Ormiston District in the Belfast City Council

Plastic Free Dunedin producing cloth bags for Dunedin – with Tess Trotter

When we consider the 100s of years that a single use plastic bag can persist in our environment, and the harmful effects of plastic in nature, the drawbacks of the plastic shopping bag definitely outweigh its limited bit of usefulness  – simply to carry our groceries from our car to our kitchen.

As a result, more and more New Zealanders are concerned and choosing reusable bags. But we still have progress to make. According to the Waste Min amendment Bill – a Green Party Members Bill that came out on the 23rd May, every year New Zealanders use approximately 1.6 billon single use plastic bags. Most end up sealed in a landfill. Some bags will end up as litter. For Dunedin, as a coastal city with a rich marine environment, even one plastic bag can be a problem if its ingested by a marine animal.

Coming to the rescue, to empower the community to transition to a plastic free Dunedin, is a newly established not for profit Trust called Plastic Free Dunedin. The group’s first project tackles the problem of single-use plastic bags. For this show my guest is Tess Trotter, a founding member of the group, and Co chair with Fi Clements. We chat about Plastic Free Dunedin’s current campaign called ‘Bags for Good’, also about Plastic Free Dunedin’s special focus on promoting local enterprise and creative endeavour, and about Tess’s personal ‘plastic-free’ hopes for the future of Dunedin. This show was recorded on the 29th May 2017.

To listen to this programme about Plastic Free Dunedin’s cloth bag action please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=4e62087d-e212-447e-a71b-72c22a2facb4

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

This is one of many shows! To listen to other recent Eco Living in Action radio shows on the Otago Access Radio Website go to http://www.accessradio.org/ProgrammePage.aspx?PID=d6c5fa93-1644-4811-acef-71386373b70a

For more information –

  • To contact Plastic Free Dunedin go to – plasticfreedunedin@gmail.com

This show was originally broadcast on the 1st June 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

Displaying some of their cloth bag prototypes. Tess Trotter (middle) with other members of the group Plastic Free Dunedin – Rachael Francis and Fi Clements

Fiona Jenkins (middle) is also an active member of the group. Pictured here with Rachael Francis and Fiona Jenkins.

 

Dunedin’s Inner City Perennial Polyculture Garden – with guest Rory Harding

Welcome Auckland listeners! If you are checking out this website and you are from Auckland, you can now listen to Eco Living in Action  on your Auckland radio community radio station  Planet FM on 104.6FM, How fantastic is that!

Of course we have all kinds of fantastic and sustainable things happening here in Dunedin! The George Street Orchard is one of them. It is an inner city food producing garden designed and tended by gardener Rory Harding. Rory uses polyculture practices in which perennial and self-seeding annuals predominate. There are no monocultural rows of plants here! The garden is inspiring and its focus and design is pioneering. Eight years in the making, it is now a fluorishing productive and intergrated system. Looking at the photos on Rory’s website, I think this must be one of the best small space temperate polyculture gardens in New Zealand. It’s simply fantastic!

On this  show I spoke to Rory Harding to find out what produce he has gathered and enjoyed this Autumn, and what he is preserving as excess.  The city environment with its concrete and tarmac provides a warmer microclimate suitable for species that usually do not grow so far south. With this in mind, Rory is adventurous in his species choices! His garden is always changing with new and interesting species being grown.

Listen in to find out what Rory has been learning from his garden this year. This show was recorded on the 5th May 2017.

To listen to this programme about Inner City Perennial Polyculture Gardening please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=81f14f87-b93b-4ed2-b1bf-1487a7c00387

(If you want to listen to this show and the link is not working – please let me know! We endeavour to re-air our older popular shows on request.)

To listen to recent Eco Living in Action radio shows on the Otago Access Radio Website go to http://www.accessradio.org/ProgrammePage.aspx?PID=d6c5fa93-1644-4811-acef-71386373b70a

For more information –

This show was originally broadcast on the 25th May 2017 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

Rory Harding, creator of George Street Orchard inner city polyculture

Hardy Kiwi fruit. Photo taken from George Street Orchard website.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rory Harding, creator of George Street Orchard inner city polyculture

 

For more photos go to https://georgestreetorchard.com/