Huxhams Cross Farm : from Maize/Barley desert to fertile market garden in process….social threefolding in action…


Mark O’Connel showed Mark, Rachel and myself round Huxhams Cross Farm on November 3rd, showing us the chickens, two cows, new barn and the market garden’s polytunnels. The transformation of soil quality from a barkley/maize desert to good soil through biodynamic and permacultural activation by Bob Mayhew and Marina O’Connel was dramatic. Marina showed me her samples of the original soil. I also held up the two soil samples to the Social Renewal : Beyond Crisis Conference at Dartington on Saturday 4th to demonstrate what change is possible when we care for the earth, build a regenerative circular economy, secure rights to affordable land through the Biodynamic Land Trust and co-create a new food culture.  This was a good example of social threefolding in action, adding earthcare of course..

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Motueka Rudolf Steiner Farm School, New Zealand

‘The Motueka Rudolf Steiner School’s visionary plan for their regenerative farm based  school offers a golden opportunity for the  local community to invest in this ‘cathedral project’ as a national, if not global,  educational exemplar. This leading edge  school will help children develop the resilience, creativity, leadership and practical know how which are sorely needed to build a more prosperous, earthcaring and convivial world.’ Martin Large,

Peter Garlick of Motueka School writes that, ‘ Martin is a publisher, community land trust enabler for housing and farms, and  founder of Hawthorn Press.  Martin is in New Zealand on a lecture and study tour from Britain. He gave a public talk in Nelson and visited the Motueka Rudolf Steiner School and learned about the new farm school project. ‘

Martin’s talk in Nelson was titled “Shock Capitalism or Commonwealth”.   He spoke about commercialism and the economic sphere and how it had captured the political and cultural spheres of society.  Education, government and cultural life needed independence to flourish.  Martin cataloged many problems in the cultural and political spheres that arose after neo-liberalism and market forces gained dominance.

Martin stated that the Market State has proved good for the few and bad for the many, and asked how do we transition to something better.  “These are burning questions we all must face, if are to leave a more equal, free, prosperous, and earth caring world for those who come after us.”  Martin’s next book, Free, Equal and Mutual is due out in December 2017.

Martin advocates for people to take back power and put strategic assets such as productive land into community ownership.  He promotes Land Trusts, organic farming, co-housing and social business.  He engaged the audience in his talk and identified local issues and encouraged other people in the room to get involved and help.

http://www.motuekasteinerschool.nz/contact-us/

For the Love Of Bees: Auckland

Sarah Smuts Kennedy, an inspiring social artist, introduced me at a breathtaking pace to the ‘For The Love of Bees’, a bee social sculptural project that is animating bee life in Auckland. We went to the Bee School at the historic Campbell Free kindergarten at Victoria Park. This is a carbon reducing, biological and community art project to strengthen inner city living conditions for humans and our long suffering bee population.

ART BUZZ: Art buzz: Sarah Smuts-Kennedy and Taarati Taiaroa.

Sarah Smuts Kennedy and Taarati Taiaroa

For The Love Of Bees is a living social sculpture that imagines Auckland as the safest city in the world for bees. Our project offers opportunities for businesses, students, individuals, schools, community gardens, brand partners and beekeepers to collaborate and produce a vision that will live on through the city of Auckland for years to come. By working in collaboration with Auckland Council Parks and Activate Auckland we are creating an ecosystem that supports thriving beehive colonies by introducing hives and focusing on the quality and quantity of flowers throughout our city. Sarah animated a wide-ranging conversation, inviting a young teenage beekeeper along to teach children about bees, talking about the developing OMG partnership with  CRL over leasing a ‘waste’ lot for a bee garden, education and organic pocket park, explaining the biodynamic peppering approach to deterring slugs and snails-and more included . Questions explored the scarcity of organic and biodynamic produce in NZ, how NZ communal land needed re-imagining, ‘some land is never owned’.;land access for gardening, allotments and community gardens and Maori views of the very notion of ‘ownership’ being problematic..guardian, or custodianship better?How to introduce more profound biological knowledge? How to rebuild models  of collaborative action, and support others initiatives, but in a linked up way.

Commoning – perspectives on conviviality – Farm Hack