Urban Jungle Folks is a group of urban dwellers who get together every Sunday to grow food using permaculture methods on a sizeable patch at Dempsey Hill in Singapore. Led by Michelle Tan, this all started when she observed that there was a disused plot of land beside the restaurant she frequented, and got the okay from management to plant edibles there.
Now, after 9 months of hard toil, they have an edible garden with herbs, vegetables and fruit plants including tomato, chilli, Brazillian spinach, mugwort, pumpkin, moringa, rosemary, pandan, torch ginger, turmeric, curry, ulam rajah, banana, mulberry, dragon fruit, papaya among many others. Also there are beneficial flowers such as marigolds, Brazilian button, snakeweed, and Spanish needles.
The group only tends to the plants on Sundays, with a bit of assistance from the restaurant when it comes to watering on some days. There is an emphasis on native plants and plants that suit our climate because these are the ones which will thrive and require less input.
Here’s Michelle of Urban Jungle Folks, who tells us a little about the group, what they are hoping to achieve and their task of the day.
[Milkwood PDC course outing with David Holmgren in Sydney, photo by Oliver Holmgren]
With more Singaporeans learning about permaculture, many wonder if a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) is relevant to them and how we can practice permaculture in the city given most of us live in apartments.
In my previous post featuring reviews on PDC courses in Southeast Asia and Australia, I mentioned that the PDC is highly relevant if you wish to design a farm or any kind of space for growing crops because it is a design course. The course is currently not available in Singapore, and I would suggest getting acquainted with the ethics and principles of permaculture first, before deciding if you wish to proceed. You can even do an online Intro to Permaculture course like the one offered here (it started on 1 May but it looks like one can still enrol).
So how can we practice permaculture in the city, where it’s also relevant to apartment dwellers? In permaculture, the aim is to create a holistic design system for managing an ecosystem in harmony with nature, and can be scaled down to suit the size of our balcony, corridor, rooftop, courtyard, or backyard garden/s.