June newsletter

Kia ora koutou Permaculture Whanau,

Back in the March newsletter we shared the direction of the council and our intentions to address some foundational issues that underpin our organisation.
Communication is a priority and we kicked things off by moving from a quarterly to a monthly newsletter. This month we have taken the next step and moved to a new mailing system, Mailerlite.
We know that initially this may result in the newsletter heading to your spam folder, so we will be sharing on Facebook whenever a newsletter has been sent for the next 2 months so you can take steps to make sure it goes right to your inbox.
As part of this review we have also had to upload our existing mailing list from which we have filtered out duplicates, spam, fake and defunct email addresses. However, we acknowledge that our mailing list is made up of our paid members, past members and people in the permaculture community. Therefore, some people who unsubscribed in the past may have been re-added due to the reporting nature of the old system. If this is you, we apologize, and you will find a link to unsubscribe below.

Diverse membership Share, learn, teach and celebrate We are also continuing our focus on delivering value for our diverse membership, which is made up of Life members, Teachers and Permaculture Enthusiasts from beginner to advanced.

One of the things our members have been telling us they are missing is the chance to connect in person to share, learn, teach and celebrate. All things that happen as part of the National Hui. So, to kick off a new cycle of this much anticipated event, plans have begun on the 2024 Hui to be hosted by the PiNZ Council, and talks are already underway regarding a 2025 Hui in the Bay of Plenty.

Normally the future location of each Hui is decided at the current year’s Hui, but due to the pandemic this was unable to occur. Having been involved in coordinating the Whanganui Hui it became apparent that a one-year lead in time was not sufficient and that two years provided a more workable scale. As such at the 2024 Hui the location for the 2026 Hui will be chosen.

There will be a lot more details to come so make sure you have updated your email preferences to ensure you don’t miss any of the announcements.

Nga mihi nui,

Fiona Moorhouse
Permaculture in New Zealand

Permaculture Principle 2 : Catch and Store Energy

Last month we started the series about permaculture principles and explored first principle, Observe and Interact.
This principle reminds us to read the landscape, patterns and cycles that form the context we are working with. With that conscious observation, we can identify valuable resources, and also recognize that some have short lifespans and we need to capture them while we can.


Energy is flowing through systems all the time and the Second principle of permaculture design is all about capturing local flows of both renewable and nonrenewable forms of energy.
The energy here encompasses everything between kai (food) to knowledge and materials from industrial activities.
The need and opportunity to take advantage of useful resources when they are available enable us to invest in systems that will sustain us and the future generations. There are many free sources of energy around us. Sun, wind and runoff water flows are produced by nature at no cost to us, wasted resources from agricultural, industrial and commercial activities are all around us and knowledge and skills of older people will be available to us only for a short time. For an opportunistic eye, these valuable resources should be used.
Using these surplus energies to invest into storage for future value will provide ease of mind during challenging times. Fertile soils with high humus content, perennial vegetation systems, especially trees that yield food and other useful resources, seed banks and arboreta of useful species and varieties, water bodies and tanks, passive solar buildings, libraries and information systems are only a few examples of storages for the future.

What resources are available to you? 


Water is one of those resources we can’t simply live without, making it a number one priority to our lives.
By simply creating strategies that will deal with abundance or deficiency of water will be vital in setting up sustainable systems.  As designers our goal is to try to harvest, retain and reuse as much water as possible before it is lost.
Think of the soil and your garden plants as water storage vessels. On the suburban blocks, the rainwater from roofs of houses and outbuildings can be directed into gardens, ponds, drains and rainwater tanks. Grey-water systems can also provide additional water for your garden. Banana circles or reed bed systems can be set to treat and recycle grey-water.
For lifestyle blocks or farms, contours of the land can be used for holding, storing and moving water. Ponds and dams that are made on these contours lines are great for water storage that can be moved by gravity to residential areas. Another strategy for storing water in broad acre land is to create swales. These are ditches on the contour lines. When they fill or catch water, the water does not flow away. They hold run off water and allow it to seep into the soil.
With time swales fill up and create fertile terraces to be used.

So as wehead into the wetter, cooler months consider how you might be able to catch and store this vital resource for use when the warmer drier weather returns.


Merve Yeşilkır

Looking to connect?

Coming up this month our members are holding events around the country.

Head over to our website and check out what is being offered in your local area. If you are a member and have an event coming up that you would like to promote on the website, please get in touch by emailing Permaculture In New Zealand.

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