N is for Nappies, Nature Play and Nature Strips
Choosing to use cloth nappies is a great way to tread more lightly with children.
With Banyule resident Elana at local reusable nappy workshops www.clothnappyworkshopsmelbourne.com.au
From local reusable nappy supplier Designer Bums https://designerbums.com.au/collections/modern-cloth-nappies
Participant feedback: “I’ve done this, it is great lots of good info and two good quality nappies that are worth way more than $20. It gave us the confidence to put this bub in cloth.” M, Heidelberg
When taking our children out for nature play it’s important to consider that we are entering the house of the living world. We can encourage our children to look and learn with minimal disturbance. As a general rule of thumb if there is already a nature playspace then we encourage our children to play there rather than build their own. Sticks and logs are important habitat for all kinds of animals, fungi and mosses. If we let them be then they will flourish, thrive and grow. We can teach our children how to build a tipi in our own backyard. We can invite our children to think about the function of the living world. For example, they might me interested in a flower. We can ask them which animals rely upon flowers for food and water. This can help to teach our children to respect the living world around them and to begin to challenge the dominant mindset that the world is there for them to take home and look at.
Eco Explorers run respectful local nature play groups. To get a taste of the incredible knowledge that they can share with you during these playgroups, take a look at this video.
See also Listening
“Our land abounds in nature strips, of beauty rich and rare.”
Gardens of this area were created by people in relationship with the land for thousands of years. A return to living in relationship with the land, including our nature strips, can help revitalise the rich and rare beauty all around us.
In Melbourne, around 1/3 of public green space is nature strip and Council bylaws vary. Banyule’s rules are being rewritten to allow residents to plant up nature strips with fewer limits. Some residents have already created beautiful ecosystems for local fauna and a richer sense of community. When the new rules are released, will you join the trend towards greening our streets? Keep in mind that discussing your nature strip planting plan with neighbours helps avoid conflict over this shared space.
Mikoto from Heidelberg Heights began lobbying Banyule City Council in 2014 to develop nature strip planting guidelines. As a demonstration project, she planted lots of low growing edible indigenous species in the nature strip at Murundaka Cohousing Community.