Category 13

Letters To The Editor

Letters to the Editor

Email your letters and photos to editorial@pipmagazine. We’d love to hear what you think of Pip and if you’ve embarked on any projects as a result of our articles. Each issue, one published entrant will receive a limited- edition Pip magazine art print, printed with archival inks on beautifully textured archival 300 gsm rag paper.

Thanks so much Robyn! I absolutely love the magazine. It’s so inspirational and educational and really makes my family and I evaluate our lives and incorporate permaculture, which makes for a happier family. Thanks for this great publication.

Christine Clancy

Pip Brains Trust

Brains Trust

The method of preserving food with vinegar has only been around since industrialisation. It came in as a quick and easy way to keep food shelf stable so it would be saleable for longer. A much healthier way to preserve your food is through the process of lacto-fermentation. This is how people preserved their food long before fridges and canning became popular. Lacto-fermentation is how traditional sauerkraut and kimchi are made. The vegetables are simply crushed with salt, stuffed in a jar or crock and pushed down until the liquid comes to the top. It’s this process of anaerobic fermentation that preserves the food through encouraging the lactobacilli bacteria to proliferate (the same bacteria that are probiotic for your gut). At this time of year you can stuff your cucumbers into a jar under a salt water brine. They will be preserved for many months, and not only that, they will contribute to a healthier gut flora every time you pull one out to have on a cracker with cheese.


Big things are afoot at Permaculture Tasmania as a new energy is flowing in and has given a boost to the organisation recently. Workshops as diverse as building with bamboo, cob building, bee-keeping, pruning and grafting, fermentation, and basic cheesemaking, as well as Permaculture Intro courses are being held throughout the state.

A network of local groups have started up and meet monthly, with skill-sharing get-togethers, social events and film nights happening.

Run by a very experienced bunch of volunteers, Permaculture Tasmania is intent on sharing skills, knowledge and resources, supporting permablitzes and building community.

Book Reviews


As we continue to become a more urbanised society, the question of how we can live and eat well in our cities has never been more critical. This collection of real stories explores past histories of urban food production in Australia, plus we hear from current food production innovators on what they’re doing and why. Part One reflects the diversity in urban edible gardens, Part Two acknowledges the important role played by the permaculture movement in training a generation of urban gardeners and farmers, Part Three contains stories that represent the new face of urban agriculture in Australia, and Part Four ties it together with an urgent call for transformative change. This anthology shares the stories of those who have taken risks and learnt lessons along the way. It’s a source of inspiration and wisdom for those wanting to join this important journey to bring back a deeper connection between urban dwellers and their food, for now and future generations. Authors include many of Pip’s regular contributors including David Holmgren, Morag Gamble, Kat Lavers, Hannah Moloney, The Food Forest, Mariam Issa and more.

Kids’ Patch

We love to see our Pip kids out in the garden growing food and we would love to see some pics of what you are getting up to. We’re looking for photos of little kids, big kids, school groups and community groups. So if you have a garden and you’re growing food, send us a photo of you in it.

Our Kids’ Patch winner for issue 13 is Olive Woodhouse from Officer in Victoria. Congratulations! You’ve won a a digital download of Formidable Vegetable Sound System’s album, Grow Do It.

Next issue we are giving away a CD of Formidable Vegetable Sound System’s album, Grow Do It. To be in the running, kids, parents or teachers can email a photo through to along with your child’s name, age and suburb.

Build Your Own Meat Safe

Making your own preserved meats such as salami, chorizo and prosciutto has been a tradition among Italian communities for a long time. With a growing interest in good quality homemade food, the tradition is gaining popularity here in Australia too.

An important part of the creation of preserved meats is the drying process. If you are making your own preserved meats you’ll need somewhere secure to hang them while they dry and age. A DIY meat safe is a good option which you can build to suit your specific situation.

Where you position your meat safe is important as the process depends on having a dry, well-ventilated place where your meat can age for several weeks and up to several months (until the meat has lost all its moisture and developed its flavour). Generally meat preserving is done over winter when the weather is dry and cool.