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That Ancient Ceremony

Gardening is not a rational act. What matters is the immersion of the hands in the earth, that ancient ceremony of which the Pope kissing the tarmac is merely a pallid vestigial remnant.
– Margaret Atwood

Today we lived our homage to Ms Atwood. We lived it in the rain. With two pairs of socks beneath our gum boots. We lived it in the rain as we intimately weeded the Food Forest floor, alongside magpies foraging for worms.

We lived it in the rain with our garden forks as we removed rocks and broken bricks and small tiles. And then we lived it with our shovels in hand as we mixed into the earth topsoil, compost and dynamic lifter, readying it for the trees that arrive tomorrow.


We have a big week of planting ahead of us, so we decided to take the weekend off to roam.

Even though it wasn’t on our agenda, each day we started off at St Michael’s to check that everything was as we left it.

The wind was chilly, but the sun was out. Perfect weather for drifting.

Good night. See you on site tomorrow.

Tools Up

We got up early today. The bobcat was due at 7am and we wanted to edge the Forest before it arrived.

Our OH&S officer was standing by.

And then it arrived!

And got to work right away.

So we found other things to inspect.

Such as our first shipment of trees to arrive. Want to know what they are? Come back next week and we’ll show you, when we make them feel at home in the soil.

But we can show you what arrived next: 4 cubic meters of steaming fresh compost mulch and 10 cubic meters of top soil. Now that was a satisfying dump..

Before adding these arrivals to the mix, we still need to weed and remove all the debris we find, such as the buried treasure we uncovered this afternoon.

But by far, the best arrivals of the day, are the passers by who stop to ask what we’re doing, and the friends who drop by to say g’day.
And the most satisfying aspect of the day? Seeing the shape of things to come.

Day One: Forming the Forest

It might have taken us a whole day to get from home to Sydney, but once we arrived on site it didn’t take us long to:

Contemplate the space,

hammer in the stakes,
have a look around,
catch up with old friends,
lay out the hose to get the shape right,
do some painting
Then we stood back and contempled the space again, that won’t look like this for much longer.