Welcome to ORTO

Welcome to ORTO

Beautiful youuu

Beautiful youuu

I host many volunteers on our permaculture property. Mostly in their 20’s. This post is dedicated to all young people and all my past, present and future volunteers. Beautiful you. About to turn 20 or 20 something. Just finishing high…

Spring and fertility

Spring and fertility

Well you know all about it. Like me your year has been challenging and strange. For me it has been quite a change. Normally every weekend we have up to four couples visiting and staying at our farm stay. They…

Greenhouse and Propagation

Greenhouse and Propagation

All year round our greenhouse keeps our household protected and in comfort. It serves multiple functions: a place for drying clothes all year round. A pocket of warm air to heat the passive areas of our house such as the…

Why I built a wetland rather than a dam

Why I built a wetland rather than a dam

It never occurred to my partner Ralf and I to build a dam – it was always going to be a wetland. The sale of our home in Melbourne in 2015 afforded us the chance to act on our dream….

Fungi Language

Fungi Language

New words have travelled and found me, making their home in my minds nest. Popping out clearly at times and hiding at the very bottom of my nest unretractable and reluctant when I need them most. Words new, such as…

Summer

Summer

Summer will we ever be able to love you again? Or have you become a time of great loss and fire? To all those affected I am sorry. I am sorry for all of us for the situation we are…

Seasonal rhythms

Seasonal rhythms

It is spring and Madeline is here from Canada. And working with her is a dream. Her pace is calm and focused. Together we are working through various projects on our 15 acres of volcanic soil. In the morning we…

Permaculture, wetland, straw building

Permaculture, wetland, straw building

We are offering a tour of our burgeoning permaculture farm followed by afternoon herbal teas and home made treats on Sunday 15th December 2pm -4pm. Please go to our Workshop tab to book a ticket. We are on 15 acres…

How to care for chickens & how to choose them

How to care for chickens & how to choose them

We have chickens after a four-year break. First, we needed to build our home, the farm stay, the piazza shed. We needed to plant thousands of trees, and grasses, and fruit orchards and berries and chestnuts and oaks, and hazelnuts…