There’s nothing better than tucking into some delicious organic fruit and veg. It’s even more satisfying when you’ve grown your own.
If you’re thinking of becoming involved in a community garden in your town or city, there are many benefits to you and the community - as Paul found out when he spoke to urban horticulturist Emma Daniel in the middle of inner city Sydney at the Paddington Community Garden.
HEALTH AND WELLBEING:
- Growing your own fruit and vegetables gives individuals and families direct access to fresh organic produce giving great nutritional benefit.
- Keeping a garden plot helps keep you physically fit.
- Community gardens are environmentally sustainable and generally completely organic
- Gardeners don’t use chemical fertilisers or compost systems; instead household waste is used to create organic composting systems, reducing landfill.
- Community gardens green urban environments and re-green vacant lots
- Gardening is mentally stimulating and adds to an individuals knowledge and expertise.
- There is informal learning from fellow gardeners and there are also accredited training courses through schools and tertiary institutions.
- Workshops are often held at community gardens regarding composting and fertilising.
- By diversifying the use of open space and creating the opportunity for passive and active recreation, community gardens improve the urban environment.
- Community gardens are social spaces where friends, neighbours and relatives congregate to not just garden but hold community events, hold cooking classes and swap produce.
- People come form all different backgrounds and ethnicities.
- Community gardens develop community identity and community spirit.
OTHER THINGS TO KNOW IF YOU WANT TO BECOME INVOLVED:
If you’re a novice there is always someone to get you started and provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to start a plot. You’ll only need a minimum of equipment as most tools are communal within the garden.
To find and start a garden near you, visit the Australian City Farms & Community Gardens Network website at www.communitygarden.org.au