10 Days at Melliodora: December 28th – January 7th 2007
In December & January of 06/07 I had the good fortune of working at David Holmgren & Su Dennet’s Homestead “Melliodora” in Hepburn Springs, Victoria, Australia. David is the Co-originator of the Permaculture Movement along with Bill Mollison. He is author of multiple books on Permaculture including the first publication “Permaculture One” published in 1978. After Publishing Permaculture One David chose to live the path of Permaculture to see if it was a real possibility. After years of getting it on the ground at Melliodora and “proving it” he has come back to be a prominent Permaculture contributer through authoring such excellent books as “Permaculture: Principles & Pathways Beyond Sustainability” or teaching Permaculture Design Courses or lecturing around the Globe.
Over my ten days at David & Su’s I worked in their orchards & Gardens, sometimes working one on one with David. We would have in depth Philosophical discussions over the implications of Permaculture, why we departed from food forests thousands of years back and why ultimately the ecological problem is in fact a spiritual problem. I also had the good fortune to share 3 meals a day, which most of the time were harvested right from their land, with just David & Su, getting to know them and his involvement & understanding of Permaculture. The most intriguing things I found about our discussions were how he came to “create” or synergize the concept of Permaculture which he quite succinctly described as his curiosity of what happens when you synergize Agriculture & Ecology using Landscape architecture as the unifying element. It was this simple vision that has created this Global movement, which Bill Mollison (the other Co-originator) has brought around the planet.
I also had joined David & Su for a trip to the Ecovillage that he helped establish, Fryer’s Forest. This was another great opportunity for education as well, more importantly witnessing the dream hit the ground…. which can be sobering at times. I’ll share more on my experiences while there in the near future.
The last highlight was spending New Years with David and some fellow friends on a dock watching some local fireworks, getting to see the casual side of such a great teacher and thinker….
What a life changing experience!