Come and visit Tarrawatta, 920 Nerrena Road Nereena, where Herb Wildes, long time ATA/Renew member, has a beautiful property with a large bushland reserve, orchard with a variety of fruits, including some interesting and rare varieties not always grown in Australia, and an innovative watering system using two tanks and two pumps, all interconnected. One of them is a home-made Ram Pump, the other is being converted to solar.

You’re welcome to bring lunch and roast it in Herb’s wood fired oven if you wish. It will be a family friendly event with lots of time to explore the bush, which is teeming with wildlife. There will be time to view Rick Molloy’s Hyundai Kona 65KwH car as well. Come and join us for a relaxed summer afternoon in the bush and bring the family if you wish.

Later on we can visit an autonomous house about 3km away.  The house was built out of local Bluestone from nearby quarry progressively more than 20 years ago. Since installation of the solar power system several upgrades have been done. This incudes more panels, new gel cell batteries and a more modern inverter.

Herb is happy for people to stay overnight.

In case of Covid restrictions or total fire bans all unavoidable incurred expenses such as Vline coach tickets will be refunded. Please register for the event on Humanitix so we can inform you if we need to cancel. There is a possibility that lifts can be provided in some cases. Email Rob Gardner at and give seats available and location, or seats needed. Alternatively, a  Vline coach departs 8.50am from Southern Cross or 9.04am from Dandenong Station. Please tell us in advance if you are travelling by coach so that we can arrange pickup. If anyone wants a convoy to the site, meet at Leongatha Railway station at 11.00am.

Herb Wildes

Herb has been a member of the ATA/Renew since it’s inception. He has been actively involved at a committee level and in the construction of the Solar Workshop at Ceres in Brunswick, development of the Energy Mobile and display trailer. Herb prefers to live and work close to the land maintaining an area of remnant forest and joining the Board of South Gippsland Landcare Network.  He has become part of the Leongatha community and is Ist Lieutenant in the local CFA.

Di and Robert

Di and Robert are long term Nerrena residents who preferred to use local materials and personal labour to build a home, to be as independent and sustainable as is easily possible on their block. Passive design, a good vegetable garden, fruit orchard and solar power followed. Di is long term Nerrena and District CFA officer and Landcare member.

Register for the event here.