Projects large and small - the list of things to do never grows shorter, just evolves.

Well, the whole farm is a project, isn't it? But within that larger context we have tackled some large projects and many small ones.

Building the House#

Chief among the early projects was BuildingTheHouse, which we started before ever moving here in 1995. Working with builders from 500km away is challenging at the best of times, but, on the very weekend we started the building project, the heavens opened. Over 120mm of rain fell within the next 36 hours. Houses were washed into the Knysna Lagoon. Large trees were washed out to sea. We scuttled back to Cape Town. The rain continued to pour, day after day after day, for over 30 days. We should rather have planned to build an Ark. read more...

The Brewery#

Atfer years of brewing beer in odd plastic buckets, trying to boild 20litres of wort in too-small pots on the kitchen stove, floors sticky from spills, lugging buckets full of boiling liquids around and plunking them into tubs filled with ice and cooler-packs, we got tired of it.

So we did what any sane person would have done long since: we stopped brewing.

Until 2009. A friend gave us the necessary kick in the pants to get started. A part of the shed got cleared, and we built a spiffy, single-tier, 3-pot brewery. Brauhaus Braamekraal.


BuildingTheChookHouse was a process of evolving the design from our book-knowledge to a real-world design that can withstand the predations of Honey Badgers and neighbours' dogs.

The Veggie Garden#

The Growing of Vegetables is a looms large in our lives. We eat very little meat - and that is restricted to seafood and poultry - so vegetables are a very large proportion of our diet. We use the Deep Bed of vegetable growing, as modified by our 16-years of experience using this method in our climate/soil/rainfall/pest/plant adaptation circumstances is a very important part of our activities. In turn this means that we need to make a hell of a lot of compost to feed the soil.

And aside from substantially feeding ourselves out of the Veggie Garden, gardening is a meditation unto itself, a pleasure for body and soul, and a low-impact physical exercise.

Hexing the Earth#

Conceived in late 2005 as a Grand Permaculture, Mike is in the process of resurrecting the HexProject - a hexagon-based, bee-inspired layout for a low-maintenance vegetable and seed garden.