Let’s Grow Shopping – Mount Colah 2021

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House Notes – Let’s Grow Shopping – Mount Colah

After renovating and retrofitting our 1958 timber cladded home as an owner builder a friend recommended permaculture as something that might help with the garden on our 1400m2 block. How I wish I had discovered it earlier!

Since completing a Permaculture Design Course in December 2018 almost all our lawn has been replaced with food forests and swales. Exposed rock shelves have been terraced for garden beds and stormwater has been harnessed for collection and redirection to where it is needed.

Four stainless steel tanks provide 27,000 litres of storage off the house, garage and chicken run roof area. Driveway run off is redirected to a level spreader at the top of the back lawn. About 90% of garden beds have drip irrigation installed, which can be fed by either mains or the tanks. The plan is to hook up the tanks to the house once our soil has built up its water retention capacity.

Throughout the house and the garden we have made prolific use of second hand furniture. Re-purposing and upcycling building materials to build compost bays, the chicken run, pond area, wicking beds, a greenhouse, potting bench and washing station. All the new garden walls have been constructed from second hand bricks including about 400 recovered from the house renovation.

Our pergola and outdoor eating area utilised our old carport, second hand decking boards for the roof, even the sandstone table is a cast off believe it or not.

The nature strip is in the process of being planted out as a shared garden for the neighbours to pick herbs and other standard edibles. We view our community as a large part of our efforts towards sustainability.

During this process we have planted over 130 fruit trees, not including all the flowers, shrubs and annual veggies.


Years Open
    • Passive heating cooling
    • Cross ventilation
      Deciduous planting around house
      External planting
    • Recycled and reused materials
    • IBC's, aluminium fencing, stormwater pipe, PVC mains pipe, Builders fence, concrete reo mesh, ladders
Garden Design Specifications
    • Wall Materials
    • Timber
Garden and Waste Reduction
    • Waste Reduction Practices
    • Compost all food scraps
      Make jams/conserves
      Pickle and preserve food
      Prioritise repairing over replacing
      Recycle coffee grounds from nearby cafe's
      Swap with friends and neighbours
      Waste free/reduced construction site
Mount Colah NSW 2079
Garden Type
    • Type
    • Permaculture Garden

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