Field Trip to Mel & Estelle Hobbins Property   

1869 Noosa Road, Traveston.

A 30 acre property, that was part of a 200 acre Grazing and Fruit Farm which was sub-divided some 30 years ago and overlooks Woondum National Park and is in the upper catchment of Dingo Creek, part of the Six Mile/Mary River system. We moved to the property 13 years ago, Mel direct from UK.

The bulk of the property is given over to grazing for Estelle’s horses. The Orchard and Veggie areas occupy about 4 acres and the hardwood plantation and rainforest plantings a further 6 acres.

A wide range of cool season and tropical veggies are grown in both traditional beds and food forest type plantings.

Entering the transition to the “Cool Season” you will see planting areas that have recently had Green Manure incorporated. The exceptionally high temperatures that continue, (Sunday 24th 37c) will delay actual planting, this year.

Summer crops still abound with many tropical leafy greens, developing Ginger, Yakon and Jerusalem Artichoke. A collection 16 x Climbing and 3 x Bush Snake Beans should still be in production and The Winged Beans should be making an appearance.

The wide variety of fruit and nut trees now number well over 120 and include citrus that Mel budded at a grafting workshop in 2016.

The huge amount of mulch required is produced on site comprising hay collected from paddocks or from the extensive plantings of East Indian Lemongrass, grown specifically for the purpose.

Composting and general soil improvement are an ongoing activity on the property.

Then there are the trees, Mel loves his trees. More or less starting from scratch, well dead and dying Wattles, Lantana and Tobacco Bush, actually, a developing plantation of Gympie Messmate and Spotted Gum, (Oldest 10 years) and Reveg plantings along and out from creeks and Dams. Mel is an avid seed collector and now grows many species himself as well as donating to Noosa and Gympie Landcare.

We are fortunate to live in an amazing part of the World, a diversity of Flora and Fauna that is second to none. Although we face immense challenges from changing climate, pests and diseases, Mother Nature has the ability respond, given just a little help and respect. Although hard work life on a Rural Property can be both rewarding and an adventure!

I look forward to sharing my little piece of paradise with you if even for a short time.

Melvyn Hobbins