In March and April 2019 we hosted a one month food forest course, where participants learn how to plan, design, implement and maintain a food forest. During this month our food forests where expanded and upgraded the food forests. Please check out what we got up to.
We have planted several new permanent beds this winter mostly by students and volunteers participating in this year’s food forest course. A permanent bed is one that requires a lot of extra work up frot, up but shouldn’t need to be tilled, dug or have as much work in the future. It also usually consists on perennial edible plants. There are many techniques which we experiment with including sunken beds, raised beds, woodchip beds and polycultures.
Some photos for those of you that do not follow us on facebook to see what we have been upto over the winter. We have been preparing beds for the summer, tidying up the land and working on the straw bale house. Check out the photos.
Want to know what the medicinal properties are for weeds on your farm? Herbalist and forager Raquel Perdigão is coming to Keela Yoga Farm from ‘Awakened Life Project’ on the 9th and 10th April 2019 to teach us how to forage for wild greens, the medicinal properties of herbs and how to use them. Please join us and also get a tour of our farm, a healthy vegetarian lunch and an optional yoga class on our new yoga deck.
Back to Eden gardening is a method of gardening from Paul Gautschi it is quite simple and makes complete sense in theory so we are giving it a try with two areas in our winter garden. It is gardening with thick layers of compost and wood chip mulch. more “Back to Eden Gardening with a twist”
For the first time we have Extra Virgin Organic Olive oil picked directly from our farm. It was a lot of work and we had a lot of help but in the end we have almost a years supply of olive oil for the farm.
We plan to reforest 18 hectares of land to offset carbon and attract wildlife. This winter with the help of volunteers, friends, neighbors and donations we have planted a forest in more than one hectare of it. Read on for a full update. more “Autumn 2018 reforestation efforts”
During our Automne 2018 food forest course we designed and planted a food forest for Chickens. This is a food forest with perennial plants and trees that chickens can fodder for fruit, berries, leaves and insects. However without plants that chickens will quickly destroy through overeating or scratching. Leaving the rest for us to harvest.
Check out some of the photos of the students in action during October’s food forest course. The students from this course designed and planted a new food forest for Chickens and Humans to enjoy near our new community building.
As opposed to building soil above ground with a raised bed, a sunken is a bed below ground where it is cooler and wetter. This type of bed appears to work better than a raised bed in Portugal’s hot and dry summers. more “Sunken Beds”
Our compost worms are critical to our organic gardens, they are a must for any organic gardener. They not only reduce waste by eating your left overs but create a liquid fertiliser for the garden, compost and more worms.. We sell composting worms every few months at our worm composting workshops at our Farm near Fundao in Portugal more “Composting Worms Portugal”
In March 2018 we held our second month long Food Forest course. The group of eight spent one month learning about trees, soils and food forests whilst researching their own trees and creating designs for a food forest. They then planted a new food forest in an old olive grove in one of our terraces. more “Photos from March Food Forest Course”
Our land has low levels of nitrogen and we are looking to fix this without the use of chemical fertilizers. Our land is already growing nitrogen fixing plants (Clovers, vetches and bird foot) trees (mimosa) and shrubs (broom), some of which we are removing due to their fire hazard. It seems that nature naturally fixes itself if left to its own devices. However we want to speed this up by growing a lot more green material for mulching as well as fixing nitrogen into the ground. These are called cover crops, green manure or green mulch. more “Nitrogen Fixing Cover Crops and Living Mulch”
During November 2017 we held our first Food Forest course at Keela Yoga Farm. This month long course was designed to give the students the full experience of how to design and set up a food forest on an off-grid farm. Take a look at what we got up to, and read on to learn more about what we planted.
more “Photos from the food forest course”
A week of yoga, natural sustainable living, sunshine, sleep, mountain views, meditation, star gazing, hammocks, learning about permaculture and enjoying organic food straight from the earth… more “Yoga Retreat May 2018”
Being creative with salads and using all the edible leaves around, either cultivated or wild ensures we have a delicious varied salad each day and the more types of leaves you use, the more nutrients and minerals you get into you, all of which help your body in different ways. Check out the greens we have availible today for our daily salads.
We have now been living on the land for 8 months and have come a really long way due to the help of volunteers, we have collated a selection of photos from the summer of 2017 for those of you who dont keep up with what we are doing on facebook
Join us at Keela Yoga Farm in March, 2018 or October 2018 for our month long Food forest courses in Portugal.
Learn everything you need to know about starting your very own food forest and off grid farm while experiencing community living on a new permaculture project. Enjoy daily yoga and meditation practice amongst the beautiful Portuguese countryside! more “Food Forest Course Portugal March 2018”
We are exited to be hosting an 8 day Intensive NATURAL BUILDING COURSE from 26th August till 2nd September 2017 with experienced Natural Builder and Teacher ‘Barbara Leite from the local established community Mount of Oaks. We will also provide daily yoga and meditation!
A long weekend yoga retreat of natural sustainable living on 29th September till 2nd October 2017, sunshine, rest, mountain views, starry night skies, organic food straight from the earth, movement, breathing, bare feet, community and magic. more “Weekend Yoga Retreat Portugal”
Starting a permaculture yoga farm from scratch has definitely been a challenge within itself. It’s exciting, exhausting and exhilarating all at the same time. There is construction, plumbing, solar generated electrics, gardening, tree planting, water issues and much more that is taken into consideration every single day. We have been lucky enough to have a steady stream of solid volunteers that have been working through rain, shine and chilly weather in the earlier months, in order to develop our ‘Zone Zero’ building site into something a bit more homely. However hard labour, heavy lifting and digging gardens all day means that there are at least 10 hungry mouths (including Laurence and I) to feed, 3 times daily. more “Food, Glorious Food!”
With 46 acers of land, multiple fields, daily yoga classes, a community to run and a huge permaculture project, starting a food forest can be very overwhelming. We decided to fence off a smaller area which had three old burnt down pear trees, named it the pear food forest and made it our focus for the first half of 2017. more “Starting a food forest in portugal”
Over the past few months, while working on improving our water, solar, camping spots, food forests and vegetable gardens, we now have three choices for showers: A wonderful compost toilet, a yoga room, a chill out mezzanine and 46 acres of land to hang out in. The upgrades continue every day with the help of our amazingly committed volunteers. more “Facilities at the yoga farm are improving”
Three years ago we planned to give it all up and start a sustainable yoga community in Portugal. We moved onto the land we bought less than two months ago along with 6 pioneer volunteers who offered to come and help us set up, in exchange for food, yoga and meditation.
more “Pioneer Volunteers”
Although we have only just bought the land officially on the 22nd November 2016, my birthday, we have had friends and family volunteering with us for the past two months to help us start our permaculture and yoga project. Please see some of the work we have been up to on this blog. more “Volunteering at Keela Yoga Farm”
Three years ago, my wife and I decided to leave our jobs in the city to start a self sustainable community and yoga retreat centre in Portugal. After two years of research and saving, we quit our full time jobs in Singapore and embarked on our life changing journey to find land in Portugal. This blog summarises our journey to find our plot of land in Portugal. more “Finding land for Keela Yoga Farm in Portugal”
During our volunteering stint in Portugal this year, we have seen many different types of structures and buildings that have been built with natural materials and using various techniques. One technique that has interested me is timber framing. This traditional technique requires skilled builders that use green timber from local fallen trees with no nails, screws or cement.
Ever since reading ‘The Moneyless Man’ that was recommended to me by Kimberly’s brother Darrell, I have wanted to learn more about foraging for food in the forest or roadside. It wasn’t until I was volunteering at the Awakened Life Project in Portugal, where they serve wild greens as the salad at every meal, that I started to learn about it.
After volunteering for the past few months in various parts of Portugal and learning a lot about gardening, community living and most recently meditation, we were looking forward to working with Fiona and Nonu at Yoga Holidays Portugal for a new experience. more “Yoga Yurt Holidays Portugal”