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Welcome to the June edition of E-News.

We are slowly opening up for volunteers to return however it will be a few weeks yet before we fully reopen.  In this E-news find out about an opportunity for volunteers to help with the composting hub and for more on volunteering check out the Nursery item too.

We are very happy to have launched a First Nations scholarship fund and to find out how you can support this please continue down the page.

Our education program is back on track and we've already seen one sell out workshop as well as the PDC already being sold out.

Read on for exciting changes coming to the farm and if you want tips on attracting beneficial insects to your garden we have lots of info for you below.

Over the last six months, we've been collaborating with a local architectural firm, Five Mile Radius to develop a concept plan for a new bathroom at Northey Street City Farm. Five Mile Radius is a collective of talented architects bonded over a common desire to build using local materials, skills, and labour, and they have a history of working with community groups and weaving permaculture principles into their design practices.

Whilst we still have a fair bit of work to do, we're hoping to secure appropriate funding and approvals for this project sometime this year!

First Nations Scholarship Fund Launch

At Northey Street we are happy to be able to provide opportunities to First Nations people to learn about and contribute to permaculture knowledge and skills, to engage with the Farm community, and to gain experience at the Farm.  We particularly would like to increase the number of scholarships to Australian First Nation people who want to attend our Introduction to Permaculture and Permaculture Design Courses.                        

To find out how you can donate to these scholarships, follow this link.

Once you have donated please email to let us know the scholarship fund is where you want your money to go.

The Composting Hub Reopens 3 July


Who are we looking for?

Two groups of three volunteers will each work on alternate weeks.

Undertake physical labour for about 3-4 hours every Thursday. 3 volunteers per week.

Someone that’s willing to learn our composting operation.


Attend the induction process so that you can be covered under the farm’s insurance. 

Attend training sessions.

Maintain contact with the Farming Manager and other volunteers.

Wear enclosed shoes and gloves (NSCF can provide gloves and steel caps if you require them).

CONTACT: Farming Manager for more information:


GREAT NEWS!  We will be re-opening for 6 day trade from Tuesday 7th of July.  

For now however, our coffee machine is still switched off - just resting, not retired:) 

We are still practicing social distancing and reading the Nursery Procedures before you enter is essential. Things to remember:

  • Eftpos transactions only
  • Please sanitise your hands on entry and exit

Thanks everyone for your ongoing support and we hope to see you again soon!

A reminder of our trading hours from July 7:

OPEN: TUES - SAT 8:30am - 12:30pm 

             SUN - 6:30am - 12:30pm

CLOSED: Mondays

Online Store: Tuesday 5pm - Thursday 10am.

If you are an existing Nursery Volunteer you are welcome to return Wednesdays - Saturdays - (no longer on Tuesdays any more).  

Please arrive at 8am sharp.

    Inter-planting with herbs to attract beneficial insects and create habitat

    At Northey Street City Farm, from around end of March through to September, I plant herbs like dill, fennel, coriander, sweet alyssum, marigold, calendula and cornflower to attract beneficial insects.

    I've been propagating lots of sweet alyssum and dill to inter-plant in our market garden. Sweet Alyssum is known to attract hover flies, which is an important beneficial insect that primarily feed on aphids. The larvae of the hover flies are so effective at controlling aphids that study has shown that when hover fly larvae populations are high, they may reduce aphid populations by 70-100%! I’ve also been planting dill alongside brassicas since they've been found to be host plants for hover flies, lacewings, pink spotted ladybird, and parasitoid wasps. Most gardeners are all too familiar with the frustration of having to deal with cabbage white moth caterpillars every year. That's why I plant dill and other herbs to attract parasitoid wasps because they're ferocious predators of the white cabbage moth caterpillars. The wasps lay eggs in the bodies of the caterpillars and the wasp larvae literally eat the caterpillars from the inside! Some predatory insects like these Common Assassin Bugs and White Crab Spider found its way adjacent to our market garden. The assassin bug stealthily preys on caterpillars underneath the foliage of Native Peach (Trema tomentosa) whilst the White Crab Spider lurks in the foliage of Holy Basil, waiting for the next visitor, such as small moths.

    It’s important to look at your garden as an ecosystem, and always consider how you can increase forage and habitat for beneficial insects. So, consider reducing or eliminating the use of insecticide or insect deterrents, even if they are organic where possible!

    Over the last year, we’ve been busy planting native species in and around our productive spaces, selecting plants that are hosts to native invertebrates, especially butterflies. Some of the plants we’ve been planting include Red Ash (Alphitonia excelsa), Native Mulberry (Piptrus argenteus), Coffee Bush (Breynia oblongifolia), Native Peach (Trema tomentosa), Scrambling lily (Geitonoplesium cymosum), Native Grapevine (Cissus antarctica) and a whole lot more! There are great resources out there on how to attract native butterflies! Helen Schwenke is a local expert on this topic so do check it out. Save Our Waterways Now (SOWN) also has a great resource on locally native plants and in what habitat types to introduce these native plants.

    Some native invertebrates (i.e. insects) are host specific so they will only be attracted to locally native plants. Always remember that invertebrates are important food source for other animal so by diversifying host plants, especially locally native plants, we are slowly but surely restoring some of the biodiversity that is currently declining rapidly in our fragmented urban to peri-urban landscapes.

    Ko Oishi, Farm Manager


    EARTH KIDS  is back this week! We are looking forward to three days of outdoor fun – including building a fire and cooking on it, shelter building, planting, composting, and earth connection activities!

    Our Spring holdiday program will be open for bookings soon, as will the homeschool program

    Due to COVID-19 we are implementing additional cleaning protocols and adapting activities accordingly.

    School holiday dates:

    SPRING: 22nd to 24th September

    SUMMER: 15th to 17th December

    Earth Kids homeschool program dates:

    Friday mornings (9.30am to 12.30pm), October 23rd to November 27th.
    For more information and for bookings for Earth Kids go HERE.

    Tours and School Visits

    We are reopening for tours and school visits pending stage 3 easing of COVID-19 restrictions coming into place (due on July 10th).  As bookings are not paid for until after each visit, there is no financial commitment to make a tentative booking.

    For more information and bookings for school visits, go HERE.

    For more information and bookings for group tours, go HERE.

    Onsite Professional Development Workshops:


    * Successful School Gardening, Saturday August 1st, 9am- 4pm

    Learn how to: design, implement and maintain your school garden; make your garden work for your school community; and link garden activities to the curriculum.

    Tickets HERE.

    Facebook event HERE.

    *Outdoor Learning and the Curriculum, October 31st, 9am to 4pm

    Learn about approaches to outdoor experiential learning; experience outdoor activities; and learn how they can be linked to the curriculum.

    Bookings HERE.

    Facebook event HERE.

    Upcoming Sustainable Living Workshops

    View all upcoming Workshops HERE.

    NB: onsite workshops will observe social distancing requirements.

    Worm Farming and Composting at Home

    Saturday 29 August

    Permaculture Practicals

    5 - 26 Sept 2020

    Nine Steps to Sustainable Housing

    Saturday 12 Sept 2020

    Urban Forage

    Saturday 10 Oct 2020

    Eventbrite charges an administrative fee for all courses, to avoid these fees you can book directly through Northey Street City Farm by emailing

     Please note our phone is unattended until further notice but we ARE responding to your emails.



    Did you know you can get a 10% discount at our Nursery by becoming a member of our Farm?   We love to see people supporting the Farm by becoming members. You can become a member on our website, at the Nursery or by contacting the Office on 07 3857 8775 or at


    The Farm does not rely on Government Funding for its operations. We operate as a social enterprise running the City Farm Nursery, Sunday Organic Farmers Market, and Permaculture Education.  We appreciate the financial support of our community, if you are able please donate by visiting our website.  

    As a not for profit charity, all donations over $2 are tax deductible.


    Keep an eye on our social media and website for updates about reopening the volunteer program.  We look forward to seeing you all again at the Farm when the program kicks off fully again.


    If you currently hold one of the Northey Street allotments your annual fee is due in June.  Please let us know if you no longer want your allotment so we can pass it on to someone else.

    FARM TOURS Tours are on hold until further notice.  Keep an eye on our social media for any updates.

    That's it for June! Happy Growing everyone.

    We've migrated to MailerLite for our E-News.  Please let us know if you received this in error or if you see any problems!

    Northey Street City Farm

    16 Victoria Street, Windsor, Queensland

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    (07) 3857 8775