Located on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula, approximately 70 km south east of Melbourne sits a bio-dynamic farm reaping the rewards by maintaining a sustainable future for their families and their local communitiy.
Meet Vicki, a passionate farmer who has a love of the land, plants, animals, humans and their integration. We caught up with Vicki at Bonbeach Farmers’ Market to chat about all things family, farm & business.
In order to feed our growing population, it is so important to educate the children on how and where to grow or source clean, nutritious food; at the same time as protecting the future of our land, the diversity of plants, the husbandry of our animals and the support of our fellow beings.
Our business educates and supplies produce to ensure clean nutritious food is accessible to the local community.
With a strong willingness to demonstrate how a farm can be financially viable with a diversity of produce rather than a monoculture we grow our own food because it provides us with the most nutritious and healthy food. We have been able to expand this produce to the local community, restaurants and friends.
We became interested in farming as there was a need to understand that for good quality food grown without herbicides, pesticides, nor synthesised fertilisers and wish to share seasonable food with our local community.
We operate a farm on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula. Designed on permaculture principles and run according to biodynamic principles with absolutely no herbicides or pesticides we aim to demonstrate that we can support/integrate local business and households with the range of locally produced products.
Always having a love of gardens, animals and open spaces, a family farm provided us with the opportunity to try to demonstrate our passion. Further studies confirmed our thoughts that monoculture using products we consider harmful are not only not necessary but are contributing to the increase in all manner of health issues.
Our best practices for living more sustainably are composting organic waste; use less plastics, recycling etc… We farm according to bio-dynamic principles though we are not certified. The bio-dynamic sprays db500 & db501 are applied at least twice per year, bio-dynamic compost heaps are built using our own resources and we operate the farm as a closed system as far as possible, utilising all waste possible
We are still quite a young venture, designed on permaculture principles and run along bio-dynamic principles; we have a young orchard of stone, pomme and citrus trees, a small stand of oaks impregnated with truffles (we hope), a few nut trees and have just planted a small group of banana trees. There is a small run of cattle, a small flock of chickens we hope in the future to add other animals and birds to our farm environment. Currently there are two bee-hives which we will expand over the next few years. As well as operating three vegetable growing areas about 100m x 15m in raised beds plus apple crates and containers.
The biggest rewards from our farm is that there something quite satisfying when deciding what to eat by walking your veggie garden for inspiration. Feedback on taste of our produce is always great to receive.
Our biggest challenges? Farming is a labour of love, especially a small diverse farm. Producing nutritious food is challenging with birds, rabbits and other farm pests. Finding distribution channels and trying to work around climate variations are also challenging.
Tips for someone interested in farming would be to plan upfront, take small steps and keep to your plan.
Eat fresh; eat local, support local farmer’s not large corporate retailers.
They are in the process of setting up a website and social media. In the mean time you can find Mainridge Bio-Dynamics at local farmers’ markets around South East Melbourne and on the Morningtin Penninsula.