We are Chris and Michele and we have a one acre permaculture garden which we treat as a small holding with chickens, ducks and lots of food being grown. Most of the tasks will be garden related but we also love to cook and make preserves, low sugar jams and wine from our produce. There are lots of different things to do in the garden - sowing, planting, willow hurdle fences, weeding, sheet mulching, watering, composting and path maintenance depending on the time of the year and of course looking after our chickens and ducks! The ducks have complete freedom to roam over most of the garden and as such we cannot have volunteers who have dogs accompanying them.
Although there are green fields everywhere, where you can go for country walks, we also live close to main transport systems and Cardiff city itself is only 15 minutes on the train from our local train station. We are not in a remote location which on the one hand means that you have lots of things convenient to you - shops, museums, swimming pools etc but also means that you are within earshot of roads and a train line. So if you are seeking a completely remote and rural experience then you would be advised to apply elsewhere.
Saying this, we are well situated for you to explore the beauty spots of south Wales and take day trips to places like the beautiful Brecon Beacons. Travelling in the other direction you can take a trip to Barry Island Beach, go a bit further and you get to Llantwit Major and picturesque St Donats, a bit further still and you get to the stunning Gower. Weekends are free time so there is plenty of opportunity if you plan ahead!
If you like the idea of combining gardening in one of the most advanced urban permaculture sites in Wales with the convenience of shops and a nearby city as well as opportunities to visit beautiful places then please get in touch!
Help with Eco Projects
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Michele runs her own business, works as a garden teacher, a gardener and a garden designer a, designing mostly edible, wildlife and permaculture gardens. She uses the garden to explain permaculture and as a teaching tool for techniques and ideas. She also helps run a social enterprise, greening city areas via people's front gardens. Chris works as a documentary film maker and radio producer making mostly social issue films for television and programmes for radio.
We have a large garden which we need help with to keep it being productive, a wildlife haven and beautiful. Most of the work is garden orientated so you need to really enjoy this type of work to be happy here. We like to get to know our volunteers and most meals are shared around a table. This is where most of the conversation and jolliness happens – that and in the kitchen making the meals! We also like our own space and solitude and like volunteers who are self-reliant and independent and able to take advantage of the many opportunities the city of Cardiff and the surrounding countryside offers to them in their spare time. We do also on occasion take volunteers out on excursions.
What you will learn
• Permaculture! (most people don’t understand permaculture and think it is synonymous with organic gardening –
this place will set you to rights on that one)
• Organic gardening
• Chicken and duck husbandry
• Cooking (if you don’t know already ;)
Specific skills you will learn depending on the time of the year.
• Sow seeds
• Transplant plants
• Sheet mulch
• Recognise weeds by sight, smell and texture
• Identify useful and / or edible weeds
• Make compost
• Make hurdle fences
• Mulch and fertilise the soil
• Keep plants healthy
We hope you like the sound of this and look forward to hearing from you!
Most of the help required is in the garden and we especially are interested in people who have building skills as there are always things that we want constructed in the garden. But! we are also very happy to take garden novices as there is plenty of other stuff to do. Because it is a garden and not a farm then the tasks can vary from day to day. We work to prevent boredom wherever possible!
Although we sometimes have volunteers stay for only two weeks we actually prefer longer stays and tend to prefer volunteers offering 5 weeks or more.
At any given time we have 1 - 4 people staying - depending on whether people are travelling as friends and / or couples. We have two caravans in the garden that are dry and warm with heating and connection to the internet via ethernet cabling or wifi.
Although there are green fields everywhere where you can go for country walks, we also live close to main transport systems and Cardiff city itself is only 15 minutes on the train from our local train station. We are not in a remote location which on the one hand means that you have lots of things convenient to you - shops, museums, swimming pools etc but also means that you are within earshot of roads and a train line.
We are well situated for you to explore the beauty spots of south Wales and take day trips to places like the beautiful Brecon Beacons. Travelling in the other direction you can take a trip to Barry Island Beach, go a bit further and you get to Llantwit Major and St Donats, a bit further still and you get to the stunning Gower. Weekends are free time so there is plenty of opportunity if you plan ahead!
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have fair wi-fi signal in the caravans and good wi-fi signal in the house. Volunteers are welcome to use inside the house for working.
We can squeeze in a small campervan.
More than two
Approx. 5 hours a day (sometimes slightly less, sometimes slightly more depending on the tasks) for 5 days a week with 2 days off.
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