Friday, March 20, 2015

Environmentality 18 March 2015, Jodi Jackson - My Everyday Garden

Well summer passed us by without delivering a day over 40°C but hopefully it did deliver some good crops and reward you for your gardening efforts! Unfortunately it’s time to say goodbye to your tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchinis, basil and beans but fortunately it’s time to say hello to whole heap of winter vegies! Before you get started though, make sure you make use of the last of your summer crop and don’t forget to prepare your soil to restore those essential nutrients ready for a great winter. This week our resident gardening expert Jodi Jackson talked us through all of this and more so be sure to have a listen to hear how to make use of your last tomatoes and basil, some soil prep tips and hear about some must have crops this winter!

Jodi brought in some special surprises this week which included some seeds for an exotic beetroot variety called Giant German Gold. The Giant German Gold is a large variety of beetroot that you cannot buy anywhere in Australia, Jodi managed to get hold of some though and let one of the beetroots go to seed. The beetroots should be harvested once they are around 15-20 cm in diameter, however if left to go to seed they reach a massive size, equivalent to a very, very large watermelon! If you’d like some seeds, let us know here at Environmentality and we’ll see if we can arrange something.

Also on the surprise list were some Burgundy Blush potatoes, described by Jodi as sexiest potato she has ever seen and if you’ve seen their colour you might guess why! A deep red/burgundy colour which at first glance could be mistaken for a radish. Jodi  got the seeds for the potatoes from Tas Potatoes if you’re interested in getting some for yourself.

Celeriac from the Celery family

Celeriac Mash (
One thing we did discuss that was promised for the blog was Celeriac, also called turnip-rooted celery. It is actually a variety of celery that is cultivated for its roots rather than its stalks. Jodi promises us that celeriac mash is a super tasty dish and highly recommends planting some now so you can enjoy over the winter. Another recommended planting by Jodi is Funugreek which is a very common ingredient in Indian curries but also has many other uses including making tea, salad addition and used in many middle-eastern dishes.

Fenugreek seeds

If you have any questions for Jodi, make sure you tune in on the 3rd Wednesday of every month and send us a text or tweet us during the show!

Next week on the show we are chatting to Emily Braham from Sanctuary Magazine about the current issue (29) which is an Australian Design Special. Sanctuary is a showcase of sustainable building design and architecture and is published by the Alternative Technology Association, a not-for-profit organisation.

Music tracks from this week:
I Will Wait by Mumford & Sons
Moorings by Andrew Duhon
Lanterns by Birds of Tokyo
Time In A Bottle by Jim Croce

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Environmentality 11 March 2015, John Englart, Colleen Jones & Brian Bainbridge - Sustainable Fawkner and Climate Action Moreland

More and more I’m realising that real and important social and environmental change is driven by local community and eventually filters UP to local, state and federal governments rather than the other way around, especially in Australia given our governments’ lack of foresight, creativity and vision when it comes to planning Australia’s future. Volunteer run community groups give me great hope for our future and have led to movements such as Transition Towns, Landcare and many local climate change action groups including the very local (to us here at Environmentality) Climate Action Moreland.

Sustainable Fawkners Community Garden - The Dandelion Patch
This week on the program we spoke to Colleen Jones and Brian Bainbridge and John Englart from Sustainable Fawkner and John is also involved with Climate Action Moreland. Sustainable Fawkner was established with the principles of transition towns in mind and has since been successful in maintaining a regular food swap, community garden and craft workshop. These types of events and having a community garden may, at first, seem to be quite low impact in terms of making an environmental difference but in fact they are essential in developing relationships among neighbours and communities and provide a platform to discuss the important issues such as climate change and the shift towards a zero carbon economy. This point and many more were discussed on this week’s show so be sure to have a listen and leave a comment if you so desire. Keep up with Sustainable Fawkner and their events through their website as well as their Facebook page.
A Food Swap at Sustainable Fawkner
Climate Action Moreland is a non-profit group working locally to take action on climate change and John is one of their many members from the Brunswick, Coburg, Fawkner and Glenroy areas. If you are wanting to take action on climate change such as putting pressure on political leaders and promoting community education and awareness of climate change then get in contact with the group or perhaps another similar group that may be more local to where you are. Find Climate Action Moreland on twitter using @CAMoreland.

John Englart has been blogging about climate change for over 10 years now ( and contributes regularly to the Climate Action Moreland website as well as writing for During our show this week John also mentioned a literature review he completed on climate change heatwaves and Melbourne so be sure to check that one out as well. John will be attending the UN climate talks in Paris in December this year to report directly on the negotiations and keep a specific eye on the negotiating positions and spin from the Australian Government so stay tuned to Environmentality as we hope to follow John’s reports and have him back on the show following his trip!
Next week on the program we have Jodi Jackson's My Everyday Garden answering all your questions. 
Music tracks from this week were selected by our guests, thank you:

Who’s Gonna Stand Up by Neil Young
The Commons by David Rovics
Shadows by Sirroco
Little Suitcase by Luluc

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Environmentality 4 March 2015, Operation Newstart - Boneseed in The You Yangs Regional Park

One thing that really makes me smile is when the younger generation takes an interest in and engages with the environment. Whether it is in the form of learning about and researching an environmental issue or just enjoying the great outdoors and developing an appreciation for the world in which we live, it doesn’t really matter as one will eventually lead to the other.
Big Rock in the You Yangs Regional Park (

Operation Newstart is an outdoor, adventure based intervention program for 14-18 year old students at educational risk and it has managed to, among other things, incorporate environmental engagement into their program. This week on the show we were lucky enough to have students from the Operation Newstart program come and talk to us about a recent camp to the You Yangs RegionalPark and their new found knowledge of the issue of the boneseed weed that has proliferated in the park. The high school students spoke to a Ranger at the You Yangs before setting off the do some of their own research and finished off the process with presenting their information live on our show! If you’d like to have a listen, click here.

the boneseed weed (
Boneseed (or Chrysanthemoides monilifera –listen to the show for Josh’s pronunciation) is a Weed Of National Significance (WONS) that has infested the You Yangs Regional Park which is now one of the densest boneseed infestations in Australia. The boneseed outcompetes native vegetation and leads to a monoculture in the lower and middle story of the bush. Apart from losing flora diversity, boneseed inhibits the regeneration of eucalypt seedlings and leads to long term effects on canopy trees and the animals reliant on the ecosystem.

boneseed infestation
The management of this issue is heavily reliant on the work of volunteers as one of the most effective management practices is the manual removal of boneseed. These volunteers do great work in managing the boneseed weed and preventing its spreading and deserve to be thanked for their great work. If you would like to get involved, there are a number of ways to do so including contacting your local Landcare or Coastcare group or the Friends of The You Yangs Regional Park.

If you have boneseed in your garden or on your property, it is very important to destroy before they flower or set seed. Once destroyed, new seedlings that may sprout must hand-pulled immediately. So make sure you know what it looks like and make sure you spread the word to friends and family so that any future infestations can be avoided

Thanks to Brendon Delaney, Northern Metro Operation Newstart Coordinator, for approaching Environmentality and providing our listeners with the opportunity to hear from the students. Congratulations to the students Josh, TJ, Eray, Maddy, Alex and Reece who did a great job speaking about their research into the issue of boneseed in the You Yangs Regional Park. It’s great to see students getting involved with an environmental issue and then having the courage to speak about it live on air!

Music tracks this week were selected by our guests:
Take Me To Church by Hozier
Sun Goes Down by Robin Schultz
4, 5, Seconds by Kanye West & Rhianna
Summertime Sadness by Lana Del Ray
Dear Mama by Tupac

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