How an Australian grazier brought his barren property back to life.'
Fifty years ago a young farmer named John Fenton took over his
family's run-down sheep property in Victoria. Named Lanark, the
property was barren, windswept and environmentally all but dead. Fenton
set about bringing the property back to life by bringing the
environment back to life. He planted trees. He reinstated wetlands. He
created wildlife reserves.
Other farmers thought he had gone a little mad, but Fenton pressed
on. As time went on, he came to realise he had stumbled on something
extremely important for the Australian landscape as a whole: an
integrated, sustainable farming system that was in tune with nature.
Thus, he became an environmentalist almost by chance.
Year after year, the tree-planting continued. By the time Fenton
handed over the property to his son a few years ago, he had planted
close to 100,000 trees. He had turned a desolate, degraded farm into an
oasis teeming with bird life. In this book he tells the inspiring story
of how his miracle was achieved.