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April Garden Insights

5 April @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Garden Insights Visit

Madingley, Debbie and Brodie’s Garden

Sunday 5 April 2020

2.00 pm to 4.30 pm

88 Richards Road, Postmans Ridge

Many thanks to Debbie and Brodie Bassingthwaighte for inviting us to explore their garden this month.

See the Facebook Event

What We’ll Do

We’ll start at 2.00pm with a welcome and introductions.

Debbie will show us her ever-evolving Permaculture Design for their garden-farm, and will talk about things that have worked, not worked, and future plans.  Then we’ll go for a tour of the gardens.  Before we finish, Brodie will chat about the construction of the home-made rocket-powered oven for anyone who is interested.

We’ll finish with Afternoon Tea and an opportunity to chat and connect with others.


  • Financial Members of Permaculture Toowoomba Inc. – Free
  • First-time Visitors to a Permaculture Toowoomba Inc. Event – Free
  • Non-Members – $10 per person
  • Children attending with parents – Free

This is a Family-Friendly event.  Everyone is welcome including children with close parent supervision for their safety.


Annual Membership of Permaculture Toowoomba Inc. is $40 per person or $30 for a second or subsequent family member.  Membership forms will be available on the day for anyone wishing to join, or available here for download.


Please bring a water bottle and wear clothing suitable for the weather conditions (sun, wind and rain protection) and closed shoes.

Parking and Access

Parking is available on site, and the garden is accessible for strollers, walking frames and wheelchairs if needed.


The property is about 10 minutes drive from the top of the range at Toowoomba.  If you’re driving from Toowoomba, head east along the Warrego Highway through Withcott.  Go past the exit to Murphys Creek on your left, and then take the next turn left into Connoles Road.  (Dependable Sheds will be on the right-hand side of the highway.)  Then turn immediately right into Richards Road.  Madingley is the last house at the end of the cul-de-sac at 88 Richards Road.  Drive in along the driveway and park as indicated.

The Story Behind their Garden-Farm and What We’ll See

Debbie and Brodie live on a peaceful 5 acres at Postmans Ridge in the Lockyer Valley (about 10 minutes from Toowoomba), that experiences extremes in weather conditions including very dry, frosty winters, and very hot summers.  They’ve been there for 17 years; however, most of the external infrastructure and the productive food plantings have been re-established in the last few years.  The destructive January 2011 flood swept through their property, so almost everything has been repaired and replanted and the garden is immature and evolving.

You’ll have the opportunity to see various vegetable, fruit and herb gardens, pots and wicking beds.  There’s an integrated poultry and small orchard system (with heritage chickens, Muscovy ducks, geese, guinea fowl and a peacock), native beehives, a small propagation area, worm farm, and abundant birds and native wildlife along the seasonal creek.

They’re slowly retrofitting their house and living spaces.  The house has grid-connected solar power and is independent of other external connections with a bio-septic system that recycles all waste, solar hot-water and 80,000 litres of rainwater storage (no town water).  There’s also a bespoke, home-made, rocket-powered oven in the outside entertainment area.

Debbie works from home as a specialist literacy teacher, so many students visit for one-on-one sessions each week.  On some weekends she presents or hosts practical workshops to empower individual and community resilience, and enjoys rich connections within the local community.

Debbie is also the founding president of Permaculture Toowoomba Inc.

Look around her website to read more about Optimise Learning and her Nurtured Life blog.


5 April
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Event Category:


Permaculture Toowoomba Inc.


88 Richards Road
Postmans Ridge, Queensland 4352 Australia
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