Fair Harvest Sustainability Festival and Charlie Mgee Sundowner 

2018 theme is……Catch and Store Energy

Sunday November 25th 2018

By developing systems that collect resources when they are abundant, we can use them in times of need.” David Holmgren

The next Fair Harvest Festival is coming soon, the theme for this year is “Catch and Store Energy”, one of the David Holmgren Permaculture Principles.

Some of the great ideas coming along so far are ;

  • Electric car display
  • Veggie oil cars
  • Bicycled powered appliances
  • Biogas
  • Glockermans pump
  • Rocket stove making,
  • Biochar making and use,
  • Woodsmiths Margaret River,
  • Compost Making
  • Witchcliff Eco Village Display
  • Speed date architects for on retrofitting, solar panel providers on home solar and batteries
  • Wind power

Last year we used another principle, “Produce No Waste” and it was the most amazing day, check it out here to see all of the innovative,and creative ways that people found to reduce, reuse, recycle and generally reinvent the whole idea of waste.

Tony Lane and Kevin Jones were kept non stop busy making musical instruments out of recycled materials and the No Waste festival

Catch and store Energy is one of my favourite principles because the more I think about it the bigger it gets.

When asked about how they catch and store energy people’s first response is  “with solar panels on my roof” and yes this is a great answer, but this is just the very tip of the iceberg.

With all that energy flowing down from the sun, the greatest catchers of all of course are the plants that surround us, catching solar power and photosynthesising it into food that makes us grow, and other animals grow who turn it into more products that help us grow. All that plant energy also turns into fibres that clothe us, fuels that heat us and structures that protect us.  Every time we store our seeds, ferment our veggies, stack pile our fire wood we are catching and storing energy.


pure sunshine

By designing our gardens, farms and building we can catch and store energy in the landscape, in the soil and in our homes. Using both old ideas and new technologies there is an abundance ways we can catch and store today’s energy without having to dig into the precious stores of the past.

A few Catch and Store Energy ideas you’ll find at Fair Harvest

The Compost Shower;

A large anaerobic compost heap catching and storing the heat energy made from decomposing plant material and using it to provide hot water for our shower. This system stays hot for around 12 months and provides hot water at 45 – 50 degrees ..read more here.

building the compost shower at Fair Harvest


The tree plantation;

A 30 year old eucalyptus plantation that is catching vast amounts of solar energy in its trees every day and storing it for future use. We are now using the trees in buildings as well as fuelling our winter fires and providing mulch for our gardens. As a bonus, the plantation is now home to a new business Woodsmiths Margaret River ….check them out here

Timber from the Fair Harvest tree plantation being used by Woodsmiths Margaret River and displayed at the Festival of No Waste


Solar panels on the roof;

A fairly self explanatory but important part of our life, providing energy to power our everyday needs.

solar panels soaking up energy behind the festivities of the 2016 Fibre Festival


Storing, drying and fermenting food;

Drying excess food for laterDuring the summer months our orchard is producing far more than we can eat, luckily its also the time we have excess solar energy to use so our drier is going flat our catching and storing energy for the winter months.

Dried pumpkin leather, kale chips and Fair Harvest olives at our cafe


The principle of Catch and Store Energy can be used in the landscape such as the design of your gardens to maximise carbon and water store. It can be used in the design of the built environment such as solar passive housing and active solar photovoltaics and solar water heating. It can be used in the home preserving fruit and bread, making wine and cheese and saving seed.

Humans are also a great source of stored energy, using our energy to power bikes, hand tools, great ideas and good music!  So, if that doesn’t inspire you to think of a way you can catch and store energy, think again.

As with all of our previous festivals there are a few guidelines;

  • We aim for a maximum of interactive ideas and displays (this doesn’t mean you can’t sell anything but please try and think of how you can demonstrate to or involve others)
  • It costs you nothing to have a stall here and we don’t pay anybody to attend
  • It is a family friendly festival so think of how kids can get involved
  • There will be a small charge at the gate to help us cover costs
  • Food will be available for sale or bring a picnic (but please don’t bring any single use plastic)

For a quick look at our past festivals –

2012 Festival of Forgotten Skills

2013 Bee Fair

2014 Festival of Forgotten Skills

2015 Beanie Festival

2016 Festival of Fibre

2017 Festival of No Waste

Please feel free to contact us with your ideas using the form below

Festival enquiry




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