Brians Blog

Winter 2017

A heads up that subsidised NSW TAFE  Holistic Management full diploma courses are starting in July in Holbrook, the Blue Mountains and Tamworth. These will be taught by certified Holistic Management Educators and include implementation of the principles on-farm, within your business and / or family. 

Autumn 2017

Let the change of the season be the prompt for us all to assess our grazing plans and stocking rates. 

A heads up that new subsidised NSW TAFE Holistic Management courses are due to start in Holbrook and Tamworth. 


Spring 2016

New growth, new Holistic Management courses! We have courses starting in Western Australia and Victoria as well as Government subsidised TAFE courses in New South Wales.  

Winter 2016


Hopefully by now we have built the maximum quality haystack to carry stock through the non-growing season. Watch this space to hear of new TAFE sponsored training taking us through to 2017. 



Summer 2016

For those of you fortunate enough to have had a start to the growing season ,the focus must shift towards managing and monitoring the time in grazing to limit the overgrazing of plants . For those for whom the season hasn't yet broken, animal impact is a valuable tool at this time to ensure when the rain does start every drop counts. 


Winter 2015

In association with the South Coast NRM I've started working with a group in Albany in Western Australia and will also be heading to the Sunshine State to run Holistic Management Practitioner Courses in the Charters Towers / Townsville Area and the Bowen / Colinsville area; this with the north Queensland Dry Tropics organisation. 

I have courses commencing in Mclaren Vale and Clare, both near Adelaide. Closer to home on the NSW Mid North Coast we will be delivering environmental and grazing workshops - we will be working with Regional Development Australia on this project. 

Summer / Autumn 2015

This year we are training in Western Australia, Southern Australia and Victoria. Closer to home we have courses for Murwillumbah, Coonabarabran and Goulburn in New South Wales as well as in Boonah and Warwick in Queensland. We will continue to work closely with fellow Educator, Jason Virtue from Landlife Education to bring quality Holistic Management training to Queensland.

An exciting development for 2015 is the successful accreditation of Australia's first 

Savory Institute Hub. Inside Outside Management will be providing the certified training programs for this organisation using the latest knowledge and information from the Savory Institute online platform. 

We continue to partner with our other parent organisation, Holistic Management International  providing mentoring for their online training courses.We will be partnering with HMI to bring their Open Gate program to Australia. 

Winter 2014

Through the wonderful support of TAFE Western in Dubbo we continue to supply the world's only Nationally accredited Holistic Management course. This amazing opportunity also comes with fantastic subsidised funding opportunities for those lucky enough to reside in New South Wales.

Providing Holistic Management training through the South Coast Oyster Farmers group to some of the country's best oyster farmers has been a great learning opportunity for us as we discover all of the principles that underpin Holistic Management with its history in the arid savannahs of Africa are just as applicable to the aquatic farms of coastal New South Wales. 

I'm looking forward to working with participants of our first Holistic Management course in Adelaide, South Australia and discovering how Holistic Management can help landholders  become more confident with managing their resources. 




The new year brings a great range of opportunities to share Holistic thinking with people. Thanks to the continued support of TAFE Western we will be providing certified Holistic Management training at Diploma level to groups in Bega, The Hunter and the Northern Rivers area around Byron Bay. We will also be providing Holistic Management training through TAFE Western for oyster producers on the NSW South Coast. This training will focus on the decision making and financial components of Holistic Management. In Apriil we will be running a week-long intensive programme for interns for Permaculture Business World. Again, my thanks and acknowledgement to TAFE Western for providing the only nationally accredited Holistic Management units on the planet and securing major Government subsidies to make this knowledge affordable.

Following on from the successful grazing school  in 2013 in WA I am initiating two full practitioner courses in the area. We are currently negotiating with the Mary Burnett Catchment to run a full Holistic Management course auspiced by TAFE Western NSW.

My thanks to the various CMA's, Landcare organisations, Soils for Life, Heenan Doherty, RegenAg and Permaculture organisations whom we have enjoyed working with over the last year and look forward to sharing thoughts and ideas in the coming months.


Spring 2013

For those of us desperately waiting for the rain and start of the growing season it is important to resist the temptation to throw open the gates. Now is a great time to utilise the tool of animal impact which is the dominant tool provided by large grazing animals during the non growing and drought reserve periods.

Getting out into the paddocks and assessing how much feed you actually have remaining is a priority. This is also a great time to utilise your temporary fencing to great advantage creating shorter graze periods, longer recovery periods and increase animal impact. Long term strategies if you find yourself short of forage would be to reassess the number of days you have planned for your non-growing sason and drought reserve as well as maximising the effficiency of the water cycle on your land.

Looking forward to a winter brimful of all things Holistic Management. August sees the Allan Savory Australian road trip. We are looking forward to extending a warm Australian welcome to Allan, the founder of Holistic Management. You will be able to take a walk in the paddock with Allan in Warwick, QLD and in Byron Bay, NSW. He will also be at the Day after Tomorrow Conference in Orange, NSW. Allan will also be in Dubbo, NSW as well as Mataranka, NT. See our news page for a list of gigs.

We're excited to be starting the full
TAFE Holistic Management Diploma course in Orange and Goulburn, NSW in July. This course provides the opportunity to gain an in-depth knowledge of the principles of Holistic Management as well as broadening our management skills to create better social, financial and environmental outcomes. Units covered on this course include pasture cropping, on-farm carbon management planning and marketing.

s well, we continue with our standard TAFE Holistic Management Diploma skill-set courses which are currently running in Bega, Sydney, Newcastle and Wauchope and planned for Bega, Lismore and Wingham.

To sign up for the TAFE Holistic Management training contact Brian on 0408 704 431.

"I did this course with Brian and can thoroughly recommend it. It takes land management to a whole new level. The ‘ah ha’ moments come thick and fast. Brian is easy to listen to, easy to understand and brings a wealth of experience to the table.
If you dream of ever having your own bit of land, I don’t know of a better complement to permaculture than this, it simply takes it to the next level. It also neatly covers what Joel Salatin is doing and is often referenced by him."
Martin Bartlett, Sydney 2013


Autumn 2013

I am pleased to announce the start of two new TAFE NSW Holistic Management courses starting in July for Berry and Moruya on the NSW South Coast. These courses will complement those which we are currently running at Bega, Newcastle and Lismore. We will also be starting a new TAFE Holistic Management course at St. Albans with the Sydney Permaculture Institute. All these events will be utilising the new Holistic Management Diploma units developed by TAFE Western Institute which can create a pathway to a degree. Current course costs are an amazing $450.00 which includes over $200.00 worth of materials, lunches and teas and 16 days of face-to-face training thanks to the current Government subsidy of 85%. This level of subsidy is unlikely to continue so enrol before 30 June to secure training in Allan Savory's thinking at hugely discounted prices.
You will complete the course with a Holistic Context for yourself, a new decision testing matrix that enables you to make balanced decisions - socially, financially and environmentally, a Holistic Financial Plan for yourself/your business, a Holistic Grazing plan (if applicable) and a whole bunch of new ideas to help manage land to create a profit, a healthy lifestyle and a regenerating landscape.

To sign up for the TAFE Holistic Management training contact Brian on 0408 704 431.


"I did this course with Brian and can thoroughly recommend it. It takes land management to a whole new level. The ‘ah ha’ moments come thick and fast. Brian is easy to listen to, easy to understand and brings a wealth of experience to the table. If you dream of ever having your own bit of land, I don’t know of a better complement to permaculture than this, it simply takes it to the next level. It also neatly covers what Joel Salatin is doing and is often referenced by him."

Martin Bartlett, Sydney 2013


Summer 2013

Having gone through our drought reserve and then some, I am amazed how quickly our paddocks have created a body of feed. I expected a period when even though I wanted more recovery there would not physically be enough feed in the paddock to allow for 120- day recovery periods. However, after the initial burst of growth and a corresponding 30-day recovery I very quickly cut back to 120-day recovery and was happy that the paddocks had enough feed to maintain the cattle. As always, it is important to monitor the cattle, check for gut fill (the little triangle between rib, backbone and hip) and for untoward behaviour. My animals had protruding rumens, were evenly spread out and spending large amounts of time lying down ruminating - all signs of contented animals. Remember, like financial planning, the power in the Grazing Planning is not in the plan itself but in the constant monitoring and control of the plan. It is easy to convince yourself that the animals must stay in the paddock for 'x' days because the plan 'tells you so' without observing what is actually happening.


Summer 2012

With the growing season now having started - or sort of - the focus of Holistic Grazing Planning® shifts towards the tool of grazing allowing us to manage to limit damage to individual plants through animals staying too long in the vicinity of a plant or coming back too soon. There are various techniques to monitor the rate of plant growth after a graze including computer generated information such as the 'Pastures From Space' program. However, the best pasture monitoring is always done out in the paddock as close to the soil surface as possible. To begin your growing season plan you may wish to use the suggestions from the Holistic Management handbook in terms of fast and slow recovery rates; the sooner you  begin to monitor actual recovery rates, the more sunlight and pasture you will grow. I recommend exclusion cages as a way to do this. However, if your animals are well trained to electric fencing a couple of tread-ins and some tape will achive the same objective. I use a galvanised cage (from around the 1000 litre containers) which work really well and are easy to move around the paddock prior to each new grazing. This gives me the information required to set the recovery rate. If the grazed plants outside the cage  are of the same volume as the ungrazed plants inside the cage prior to the cattle entering the paddock for the next graze then those plants may be deemed recovered. If the grazed plants outside the cage are of a smaller volume then you need to increase your recovery period. For copies of the Microsoft Office Excel® recovery period calculator developed by Educator, Bruce Ward (saves you all the legwork) please email me.


Spring 2012

After a couple of comfortable years for most of us whispers of El Nino and the possibility of a late start to the growing season may well put our grazing planning to the test. Now is the time we should be reassessing not only in front of the animals as to how much feed is left in the paddocks ungrazed but a check on how much reserve is left in all the paddocks. When doing your feed budgeting remember to be particularly lenient for your pregnant animals. If you make the decision to destock implement the plan as soon as possible as the longer you delay the more animals you'll have to destock by. When the growing season does start monitor plant growth rates with exclusion areas or cages.



Autumn 2012

With Autumn in full swing, it should be a busy time for ‘Quadrant 2’ activities – things that are important but not urgent. Around about now, with daylight lengths shortening and the nights becoming decidedly nippy we should all be getting into our feed budgeting for the ‘non-grow’ or ‘slow growing’ grazing planning. Possibly re-reading pages 70-77 of the Holistic Management handbook will get you started.

The second ‘Quadrant 2’ activity that you should be working towards is your annual financial planning. The preliminary planning steps – is there a logjam, factors adversely affecting the business, current year review and assessing the current weak link for each of your enterprises requires some thought before charging into the actual planning steps. A re-read of pages 29 to 37 of the Handbook will refresh the process for you. Keeping an eye on your animals’ dung pats will give you an early indication when to supplement, the warning signs are dung stacking high with lots of close compaction rings.