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Project Establishment, Eagles Deep (Victoria, Australia)

I was contacted back in October last year for an initial consult, on pre-property purchase in Tatong, Victoria, Australia. Since then the project has come along in leaps and bounds. Below is a photolog of the events, trials and tribulations of the project this far. My first job after purchase was to secure the dam and install what will become a secondary spillway, but for now it’s the primary spillway — it’s as simple as putting the next spillway in 50mm lower than the current one which is set at 1m below the dam wall height, giving us a 1m freeboard. I call it the insurance policy!

We have connected up gravity-fed water systems from the top dam on the property for the service water, a huge milestone in establishing any system. The next lot of jobs was infrastructure — retrofitting part of the old hayshed into to a temporary home — and drinking water was also a priority, We started off by bringing my portable sawmill down and milling timber on site (the classic of mill to the log). We installed a stainless steel rainwater tank and set up guttering downpipes for rainwater harvesting and storage. And for a hot shower, rather than a cold swim, we installed a rocket stove hot water heater built off site with salvaged materials and installed in a matter of hours.

And with all projects you need building materials, so we we will be doing a bit more sawmill work for building structures — a solar power room for batteries / inverter, a shade-house on the southwest side of the shed-come-home, and chicken houses, both stationary and portable.

I’m also happy to say I have been invited to teach and use this site as an education site, starting off with weekend courses, then week long — leading up to running full PDCs. Stay tuned for more on this!

David Spicer

David Spicer’s approach to design and education is based upon a proven emphasis on practicality, having over 18 years experience in Permaculture education working and teaching with Bill Mollison at the Permaculture Institute (Tasmania) and Geoff Lawton, the managing director of the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia and Zaytuna Farm. He is renowned for his ability to explain concepts and ideas simply, conveying the basics. David previously worked as farm manager of the renowned Tagari Farm and Zaytuna Farm in northern New South Wales. He has taught and worked extensively within Australia and internationally on various projects, covering six Australian states, Morocco, Jordan, New Caledonia and Palestine covering a broad array of different climate zones. David is a valued member of the permacultureconsultants.com team headed up by Geoff Lawton. He has the distinction of being Registered Teacher #5 with the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia. David currently serves as Lead Consultant and Educator for permacultureworks.org.

6 Comments

  1. I own a 32 acre (14 hectare) farm near Stanthorpe with a large accommodation complex, 2 large farm ponds and a frontage to the Severn River. The farm is situated in the cool temperate, Mediterranean climate of the Granite Belt of southern Queensland. I am looking for young Permaculture graduates interested in working with me to regenerate this property which was once a productive stone fruit orchard. Anyone interested may email me for further information.

  2. Hi all! We can highly recommend David Spicer and the crew at Eagles Deep, we attended a Regenerative Farm Forestry course their earlier this year and were astounded at the scope and implementation of their property design. The course was excellent, thoroughly informative and relevant, good humored and well organised. The food was great too – thanks again guys, we will follow your incredibly inspiring journey with great interest, big love – Tod and Tash,

    1. Thanks Tod and Tash. Your support means a lot (especially during trying times) and we really enjoyed your company, as well the sharing of ideas. Please keep in touch. The 3 of us at Eagles Deep farm have many of our own inspirational books and teachers, but, above all, Dave has been the largest inspiration on a practical, mainframe design level. I’ve never met such a bloody practical guy in my life. He’s given us tremendous confidence since he set foot on the property back in October. He said to me recently that one of his main aims for doing what he does is to empower individuals. I can safely say, from our experience with him, he is walking that talk. My website is the progress of our project (we have no internet, but I try to get to the nearest town library to update it every so often)

  3. Thanks Evan, after hitting the submit button I realised that my email address would not be published. However, anyone who types my name into Google will find that I have an identity and may be able to contact me through my blog https://fayhelwig.com which is about the way I practise a self-sufficiency, organic gardening lifestyle. They will also find me on Facebook and could message me.

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