It’s not every day you see, experience and explore the intricacies of a 20 Hectare (50 acre) food forest. Its scale impacted all of us, even in its early establishment phase. This event at James Cameron’s Wairarapa food forest, was the crescendo workshop on the Beyond Organic NZ Tour to date, due to the sheer scale of the project.
Gary and Emily Williams of www.waterscape.co.nz have been leading this project for the last two years and Gary kicked off the day by presenting the history and design. Then we headed out in a convoy to see the result of the recent winter planting of 5,000+ trees.
Many lessons have already been learned on the site and it has raised the bar for future projects of a similar or larger scale.
There was an abundance of discussion in the field, led by Gary, Emily, Matt and Stefan, before coming back for a most delicious lunch put on by chef Dave. The afternoon began with a presentation by Stefan followed by group practice in polyculture design.
This project is a valuable demonstration for anyone looking to transition from monoculture to polyculture, and take on a regenerative approach to food production. Through hosting this educational event, the Cameron family are making an important gesture of support that will inspire many others as they undertake large scale projects, now and into the future.
Stefan Sobkowiak / Gary Williams / James Samuel
If you are lucky enough to live in the South Island, we’re on our way to see you. The first South Island workshop is in Motueka (March 27th), then Christchurch (March 29-30th), Dunedin (April 1st-3rd) and finally Hawea Flat and Arrowtown (April 5th & 6th). Check the calendar of events for details and registration – as one of the participants posted on the Facebook page, “If Stefan is coming anywhere near you, GO!”