Wagtail turns one

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New born

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Happy birthday!

That’s right, Wagtail has officially had it’s first birthday. It was somewhere in between the first site preparation (5 May 2013), the first planting (9 July 2013) , and the first harvest (10 August 2013) – thus demonstrating the difficulty of pinning a start/end date on a cyclical activity! Reflecting back on our six-month achievements, there have been some changes – we’ve changed markets, our wages are now greater than $2/hour (but still short of minimum wages), and Brett, the third leg of the stool, has flown the coop to greener pastures (okay enough metaphors) for the time being (walking the path between paying the bills and following your dreams is never easy). But we’re also starting to see patterns emerging – getting a feel for the seasons, comparing notes from last year, learning from our mistakes, and establishing and bedding down the routines that keep the farm ticking along. But while our approach has always focused primarily on growing healthful veggies, there has been an amazing range of other activities and highlights intertwined with this core, for example:

  • Farmers’ Market representatives coming to talk to us about the future of farming, young farmers and local food
  • An artist project exploring the links between climate change, food and sustainability

Rosie from Urban Theatre Projects and Nat talking theatre and food

  • Sharing a beer with the neighbours
  • Connecting with the local community (e.g. reminding a local resident of her African roots when she came and picked rosella leaves to blanch and eat like spinach – I didn’t know you could eat them!)
  • Teaching the local high school about where food comes from
  • Lecturing at uni on urban agriculture and the future of food
  • Meeting up with Costa at the City Farms and Community Gardens conference in Hobart
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  • Hosting the Fair Food Week open day
  • Guiding a Permaculture Design Course tour
  • Holding numerous working bees with friends and supporters
  • Being involved in a local growers collective
  • Receiving a visit from our farming mentors at Allsun
  • Participating in a university-led workshop on urban agriculture
  • And last but not least, featuring on Today Tonight (we’ll keep you posted on this one – we promise it’s not a ‘shonky salesman’ scoop!)

From all of us we say thank you for supporting us over the last year, and let’s hope this next year brings as many welcome surprises.

Steven “Fishhead’ Hoepfner and Silvia Volonta at the Market Shed on Holland St