Tamborine Sustainable Garden Society Permaculture Presentation

Guest Speaker Dr John Quayle
Guest Speaker Dr John Quayle
Guest Speaker Dr John Quayle talks about Mariefields Property at Tamborine Sustainable Gardeners Society Meeting

Dr John Quayle Talks About Mariefields Estate

It was another successful year for the Tamborine Sustainable Gardeners Society with election of new office bearers at their recent AGM including re-election of President Lesley Henry. About 80 members were present at the meeting, eager to hear Guest Speaker Dr John Quayle, Veterinarian and Environmental Lawyer, talk about permaculture principles, regenerative agriculture, and the environmental protection of our remaining fragile ecosystem. Dr Quayle’s talk was centred around the wildlife corridors, lush rainforest, and organic farmland of his 165 acres Mariefields property in Pumpenbil (Tyalgum).
John has followed on from the eco-sustainable ideas of the previous owner of the property, Bill Mollison, who originally developed his permaculture principles in the 1960s, by reshaping the degraded farm land for over two years.
His creation of over 20 dams and dozens of swales on the contours all interconnected to hold water resulted in 60% habitat and 40% grazing ‘food forest’, and the Mariefields estate becoming the first permaculture farm in the world.
When John purchased the estate in 2017, no chemical or additivies had been used for over 35 years. A vision of protection of the environment was to be a priority and so John’s developments, among other things, included the creation of wildlife corridors, protection of creeks from cattle, construction of bird islands, planting of thousands of food trees for koalas, as well as Manuka ti-trees for the apiary. During the talk, John presented lots of ideas for small yards, such as: nesting boxes for birds and possums. His total ideal of ‘Reject Tradition – Embrace Biodiversity’ sparked many questions about the property and its principles including: dung beetles, feral animal control, and the all important contours and swales.
Members of TSGS were delighted and agreed “it was an excellent and inspiring talk”. They look forward to other upcoming superb presentations, such as this, on gardening and sustainability ideas throughout the year. Thank you John!

Sue Morris demonstrating how to make boxes
Sue Morris demonstrating how to make boxes from old calendars with Lesley Henry the President