February newsletter

 Kia ora,

As the weather cools we see summer harvests coming to an end, and the darkness creeping in earlier and earlier.  The recent cool weather has already seen people in my local area of the Rangitikei lighting their fires and spending more time indoors. 
Meanwhile I am planning my cool season planting and kicking things off by planting my garlic over the first week of April.  At the same I am juggling making the most of the current abundance and storing it for the year to come, and heading into a season of cheesemaking following the calving of our house cow.
As Merve highlights in her article below, this can also be a time of sharing both knowledge and abundance, of coming together, reconnecting, reflecting, and responding to the changes happening all around us.
These themes have also come to the attention of the council as the things missed most over the last few years when reviewing feedback both from our membership and across the wider permaculture community.
With that in mind the National Hui has become a regular talking point and discussions are underway as we work towards both the 2024 and 2025 events.   It is early days, and nothing has been confirmed, but you can start to get a little bit excited as we work towards an event that is all about sharing knowledge and abundance, and of coming together to connect and reconnect.
So stay tuned…
Finally, in case you missed the March newsletter over the next 3 months we are moving all memberships to a single renewal date that aligns with the new financial year voted on at the 2021 AGM.  This means all paid current memberships will be extended and will expire June 30 2024.  All membership renewals and new memberships that occur between now and June 30 2023 will also expire June 30 2024.
This extension is free, and all our current members, as well as all new members, will benefit the extended membership period.  So if you know someone who has been considering joining then now is the time to make the most of this one-off membership extension.

Nga Mihi Nui
Fiona Moorhouse
Permaculture in New Zealand


Ngāhuru/Autumn is a season of changing colors, abundance of crops, and a little kind reminder to get ready for cooler months ahead.
As the seasons change, our needs and energy levels go through similar changes where we feel the rhythm of nature as it is ours.  And like most things, colder weather brings a time of rest and reset, but before that, the abundance of this season reminds us to catch and store energy while we can.
Dealing with abundance can be a fun and efficient task if done with a team. Working together is widely seen in nature from trees that share nutrients to the social structure of lion packs. Social permaculture is a branch of permaculture that uses these kinds of tools from nature to aid our social relating and community building skills. When we create positive relationships with our whānau, friends and wider community, we also create positive feedback loops with the land around us.
In Maramataka Maori, April is approximately equivalent to Paengawhāwhā which is the eleventh lunar month. Paengawhāwhā is also known as the time of preserving kai. The Autumn months provide a glut of apples, feijoa, grape, pumpkin, kumara, chestnuts and many other fruits and veggies. It is a good idea to start making chutneys, pickles, freezing vegetables, and drying fruit if you are not already. Any inspiration to preserve the abundance for upcoming winter days will be much appreciated when it’s super cold outside. While all these preserves sound amazing, dealing with abundance can be a lot of  work alone…
Social permaculture reminds us that like a tree guild, not only we are stronger and supported if we have our own guild of people, but we also function more efficiently together.
Ma tini ma mano ka rapa te whai – Many hands make light work. This proverb is about the importance of teamwork. For example, harvesting and processing fruit together for cooler months, can be an amazing social activity with friends, whānau or the wider community. Either each person making a different thing and trading with each other, processing abundance as a group, or everyone taking over a task and sharing the products could be another awesome way.

These kinds of social activities help us build our community on sustainable relationships. In turn; we can use these social tools to improve our connection with the earth.

There are now many groups, events, and activities across the country and globally working towards a new social order using permaculture principles. Recently the Raglan community was asked to drop off excess fruit, pumpkins, kumara and containers to a volunteer organization which in turn was turned into soup, apple and feijoa crumble to share with pensioners, single moms and neighbors in  the town. This group also collects excess/unwanted fruit to share with those in need. The result of these little projects has a major impact in the community; connecting people together in kindness, making the most of abundance, and finally resulting in strong connections with the land and the people. An ethical relationship both with land and our community creates a positive reinforcement of trust, support and living in harmony…
Merve Yeşilkır  


This season’s favorite is super moist and fudgy marrow chocolate cake which makes the most of  the glut of marrows and pumpkins from the garden.


2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups white sugar
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon of salt
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup of plant milk or warm water
4 eggs
3 cups grated marrow or kamokamo
¾ chopped walnuts or almonds
½ cups raisins if you like


Preheat oven to 175C and grease a large flat pan Mix all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl;flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and powder, spices Add oil and eggs, mix well until just combined Fold in zucchini, walnuts and raisins Pour cake batter into baking pan Bake for 50-60 min Use a toothpick to see if it’s fully cooked, if the  toothpick inserted to the center comes out clean, it is ready. Enjoy
Nominations are now open. Nominate your favourites from the world of organics
The 2023 Organic NZ Awards nominations close on March 22nd. Click here to nominate your favourite: Community Garden Farmers’ Market Organic Food product, drink, or non-food product Organic Regenerative Farmer of the Year, Emerging Leader, and brand of the year. Events Looking to connect with like minded people, get inspiration or learn new skills and knowledge? There are many events happening here in Aotearoa New Zealand that will help your Permaculture journey. Check out these events across the country… Connect with Us: Facebook Contact Info: Email: info@permaculture.org.nz You receive this because you have expressed an interest in PiNZ in the past. If you have let you membership lapse then you can renew at your profile page. If you want to join PiNZ then go to  https://permaculture.org.nz/join-membership
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