By: Laurel Stowell

Two years ago Nelson Lebo began a market garden on his Fordell property. Photo/File

Adult Learners’ Week has hitched up to Permaculture Weekend with workshops on subjects from weaving to window blankets.

The week is from September 4 to 10 and the workshops and classes are at the Whanganui Learning Centre and other, mainly outdoor, venues. Most are free and the most expensive is a three-hour farm tour for $25.

The best place to see the full programme is online, at Eco Thrifty Living.

For the past four years Whanganui’s Nelson Lebo has applied to Adult and Community Education Aotearoa, and received $500 to hold the week. He says it’s the best value for money in all of New Zealand.

During those years there has been a Permaculture Weekend attached. For the past two it has involved other teachers as well as himself.

This year Mr Lebo is giving free one-hour workshops at the Whanganui Learning Centre on September 5 and 6, on subjects to do with healthy housing.

On September 6 the centre offers a free four-hour introduction to computing, and on September 8 there’s a morning making unusual kai, followed by a celebration lunch.

At the weekend there will be 12 workshops and a shared evening meal. They include a tour of land restoration at Mount St Joseph, weaving and ropemaking at the River Traders’ market, backyard chicken raising and composting, fruit tree care and a seed swapping venue.

Many of the workshops, including the one on outdoor classrooms for children, are at Mr Lebo’s Kaitiaki Farm, number 223 No 2 Line, just outside Whanganui.

He says it’s a “textbook” permaculture property, and one of the best in New Zealand.

And he says the teachers on offer are also brilliant value.

“Murray Jones is probably the best nurseryman in all of New Zealand. Cyd Welsh raises award winning poultry and Dani Lebo is one of the best educators in all of New Zealand.”

He’s promising the weekend won’t be just a talkfest.

“You will get dirt under your fingernails. You will get real solutions to a troubled world.”

Source: Wanganui Chronicle


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