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Wanganui
All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 10
Persons: 1, 2 or 3
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 27661
Region: New South Wales

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Last Updated: November 19, 2017

GROWING FOOD - BUILDING HABITAT - REWILDING

Educating and investing in the good.

We live in the rainforest hinterland behind Byron Bay. The nearest town is Mullumbimby 20 minutes away, Byron is another 15 minutes from there.

We are developing an edible forest garden on a permaculture design and returning the rest of the land to rainforest. We are chemical free, working with the weeds. As a result we have a large variety of native fauna. Native birds, bees, frogs and micro-bats thrive in these conditions. There are two ponds that sometimes have platypus living in them. We have one flow hive for low stress honey collection from European bees.

We are not aiming to be self-sufficient in food, rather to have an abundant food supply, which we supplement from the butcher, the grocer and the deli.

WHAT DRIVES US
Love. People. Increasing bio-diversity on this wondrous piece of land. Doing positive stuff for the planet.

WORK
We benefit from all the help that is offered and love the companionship of sharing the journey with like minded folk or those just beginning on the path of sustainable life style.

We expect four hours work a day for five days a week. Our helpers have stayed from a minimum of one month to a maximum of three months, and some have left for a beach break, and then come back.

Work includes maintaining and establishing gardens; weeding, digging, mulching and planting; window and house cleaning; preparing food for preserves such as lime chilli pickle and grapefruit marmalade; building maintenance; rainforest regeneration; collecting composting materials such as cardboard and newspaper from town and cow poo from a nearby dairy. These are for the large hot-compost bins. We spread the compost over the fruit trees and into the vegie garden, thus building soil depth.

We are creating a koala corridor through the back of our property. Each koala requires a large number of special trees for a year's supply of leaf tips. During the mating season they are noisy. Last year one girl was right next to the house in a giant lemon scented gum but mostly they are out of sight.

Please bring old clothes, boots and wet weather gear as we carry only a few spares. We get ours from one of five charity shops in Mullumbimby!

FOOD & ACCOMMODATION

Accommodation is a detached sunny self-contained flat (called The Barn) a short distance from the main house. It is a retreat space, which overlooks one of the orchards with glorious views into the valley below. Previous helpers have sat out on the patio and watched the sunrise through the mountain mist, listening to the morning chorus of birds.

The kitchen has a water filter, fridge, electric frypan and a hot plate, a microwave and a small griller oven, plenty of pans, cutlery and crockery. We provide all food for your self-catering. You tell us what you like to eat and we will endeavour to provide it.

It has a queen size bed (with mosquito net if needed) and a single bed. It is ideally suited to a couple, friends or siblings traveling together. We provide all the linen. Bathroom/toilet are en-suite. We have a clothes washing machine and dryer in the house.

It has a wood fire that keeps the place warm and dry in winter.

There is mains power, WiFi, a TV & DVD player with a large DVD library, and a digital library of permaculture videos and documents. Mobile phone coverage is poor but always enough for SMS.

The mountain air, the feeling of isolation and the quiet is fantastic. Well, it's not always quiet. The early morning kookaburras and forest birds are noisy, cicadas in summer evenings, and at night you may be disturbed by the frogs, fruit bats, wallabies, koalas and other native animals eating, mating and chattering above and around the buildings. They are mostly nocturnal creatures and hard to find during the day. At night In spring we sometimes see fire flies and glow worms. When it is really noisy we use ear plugs to sleep. We advise you to bring your own!

Occasionally we share an evening meal, and plan activities for the week, chat over a glass of wine or beer and sometimes play a card or board game.

Our spring water comes from world heritage listed Nightcap National Park behind our place from where there is a leisurely five hour walk to Minion Falls.

TRANSPORT
If you don't have your own transport, we can partly assist by including you in our own travel plans for the week. There is also a school bus service from our place to Mullumbimby and a bus service from Mullumbimby to Byron Bay.

VISA
We are not certified to give you a second year visa.

WHO WE ARE
Mary is a yoga teacher, nurse and remedial massage therapist. Peter is a writer, painter and, a couple therapist.

We have two dogs, two pet rabbits, five chickens and abundant native fauna and flora. Parrots, pigeons, owls and doves including the wampoo fruit dove, goshawks, eagles, wallabies, pademelons, potteroos (on the endangered list), bandicoots, antechinus, spiders, insects, and scary things like snakes, monitor lizards, ticks and leeches (most are avoidable). We have field guides and binoculars on hand to identify the creatures we share this magical place with and are lucky enough to see.

If you are interested in a stay with us, please include your email address and a phone number in your request.

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