Community garden

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Balam-Balam Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Carlton North
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

The Balam-Balam community garden comprises a number of communal plots, a market garden, herbaceous border, hot house and indigenous bushfood garden. The garden supplies produce to the local Community Grocer market held weekly at the Carlton public housing estate and to migrant and refugee students at Carlton Neighbourhood Learning Centre studying English.

On the fourth Saturday of each month at 11am, they have a working bee. They also welcome people during the week to help out. If you’re interested in getting involved, contact them.

The garden includes a community compost hub where you can contribute your food scraps to be recycled into nutrient-rich compost for the garden. Ask them for a food scrap container if needed. During business hours, enter via the back gate and deposit your scraps directly in to the compost hub. Outside business hours, place contents in the green bin (you will need to contact them to get the code to the lock).

Enquire about buying a bag of compost for $5 and seedlings for your garden grown in the Balam-Balam community garden when available.

West Brunswick Community Garden and Food Forest
Township/Suburb: Brunswick West
Notes (in their own words):

West Brunswick Community Garden and Food Forest has some old roots in Dunstan Reserve dating back to the early 1990s. The spaces were re-developed in 2011 and is now focussed on sustainable gardening, sharing, learning and growing together. The community garden space hosts a local community compost hub, 30 individual plots, a greenhouse, a meeting & shaded seating space, and a large communal gardening area.

There are 125 different trees and plants in a permaculture system. It is an educational space incorporating bushfood planting, semi-tropical planting, orchard space and a variety of other zones. It is always growing.

The garden is part of Moreland Community Gardening. Please join the group to be part of a vibrant community and to have fun.

There are regular meetups:
•     Weekly meetup: every Friday, 10am-midday.
•     Monthly seed savers meetup: 1st Sunday of every month, from 10am.
•     Monthly communal gardening working bee: 2nd Sunday of every month, from 10am.
•     Monthly food forest working bee: 3rd Saturday of every month, from 10am.
•     Monthly garden and gather: 4th Sunday of every month, 11am-3pm (Mar-Nov) and 9am-1pm (Dec-Feb).

Brunswick Neighbourhood House Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick
Notes (in their own words):

The garden is membership-based but is open to the public whenever the neighbourhood house is open (Mon-Thur 9am-4pm and Fri 9am-midday).

The garden is a communal garden which comprises a mixture of raised and wicking beds. It is a place to meet neighbours and have a chat. Everyone is welcome.

Jewell Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick
Notes (in their own words):

The garden is open to the public. There are 10 planter boxes on the bikepath outside the Nice One cafe which are available for anyone to harvest.

Luscombe Street Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based.

The garden caters for a wide range of abilities and has a number of membership-options. The idea behind the garden is to share knowledge and to learn from each other. There is a mixture of individual and communal plots that are maintained through monthly working bees. The people come together through their mutual love of growing and, if you become a member, you will have the opportunity to meet and share with like-minded individuals, it will save you money over the long term and you will have a positive environmental impact by turning waste into a resource. A committee, who are dedicated to maintaining its future, runs the garden.

SEEDs Communal Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

SEEDs is a communal garden where they grow and share together, growing natural networks, skills, mutual opportunities, friendships, organic food and community. There are no individual plots. The food that they grow is used to feed their weekly volunteers as well as a way to connect with our local community. They also donate regular harvests to The Local Kitchen Brunswick and share and cook their excesses. The garden is connected to, and shares the space with, Milparinka Disability day service. They aspire to be a connecting point and resource for their community.

There are regular working bees at the garden, every Monday and Thursday at 10am.

A food swap is held at the garden on the 2nd Saturday of every month, 10am-midday. Boomerang Bags Brunswick uses the SEEDs space to hold monthly sewing bees at the same time.

CERES Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick East
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is allotment-based, mostly individual allotments plus a shared allotment area. There are around 50 garden plots which are rented out yearly to those with limited household space for growing.

There are regular working bees and social BBQs. These provide opportunities for gardeners to mingle, share freshly grown produce, swap seeds and pitch in to help maintain the site.

Merri Corner Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Brunswick East
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is allotment based.

The Merri Corner Community Garden was conceived in 2006 by a group of passionate Brunswick East locals and opened in 2010. It has around 40 plots where plotholders grow a variety of herbs and veggies. Members are from the local area and often don’t have access to much garden space at home.

All are welcome to visit. There is an open garden / working bee on the second Sunday of each month, 10am-midday.

Pentridge Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Coburg
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based, with some allotments.

Pentridge is a new (as of late 2017) community garden within the grounds of the historic Pentridge Prison in Coburg. The old prison site is being re-developed as an integrated residential and commercial precinct with housing, cinema, hotel, cafes, retail and artists studios. The garden is located within the site on land provided by the developer, Shayher Group.

The garden is maintained by a group of local residents, with a focus on gardening together, learning from each other and building a vibrant local community. It includes fruit trees, vegetables, herbs in both communal gardening spaces and personal plots (allotments), ornamental beds, a community compost hub, open & shady spaces to sit, and plenty of activities for kids.

The garden is part of Moreland Community Gardening. Please join the group to help develop the garden into a vibrant part of the Coburg community, where residents can meet, grow some food, plants and flowers, chat and enjoy some relaxing green space within the city.

There are regular open sessions at the garden, every Sunday, 9-11.30am. See their Facebook page for dates of other events.

Reynard Street Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Coburg
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

The garden was created in 2018 to increase access to to fresh nutritious foods and to provide an opportunity to educate children and adults about growing food. All beds and areas are open to the community to harvest at any time. It is a fun, interactive space where you can get your hands dirty learning horticulture skills or feel free to pick some herbs on your way home for dinner tonight!

The garden’s management is overseen by the next door Reynard Street Neighbourhood House. It has been designed to be as accessible as possible with staff members from the house trained in disability access and inclusion.

There are three small compost bins for community members to drop off green waste. They also recycle waste from the Neighbourhood House’s community lunches to create compost and feed our worm farms, which in turn fertilise the vegetable beds.

They welcome donations of plants and items but email them first.

A small group of gardening volunteers meets every Friday at 10 am and works until 12:30 pm when they break for a free community lunch! They incorporate produce from the garden into these weekly community lunches. There is also a working bee on the 3rd Sunday of every month, 2-4pm. New visitors and volunteers would be more than welcome to any of these events.

On the third Saturday of each month, there is a food swap from 11am to midday.

Fawkner Food Bowls
Township/Suburb: Fawkner
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based.

Fawkner Food Bowls is a resident-led group growing food, sharing skills, and socialising in a family-friendly space. It is based on a communal market garden model where members can learn about, and contribute to, growing crops that are then sold to support the running of the garden. They have a range of memberships, with general membership being $25 pa (see their website); this entitles people to discounts on produce, events and seedlings. Membership is open to anyone.

Work on the garden began in 2017 with the help of Moreland City Council, Fawkner Bowling Club, and the Neighbourhood Project. They have since received grants from Moreland City Council, CoDesign Studio, Moreland Energy Foundation Inc. and the State Government. The starting point was a disused lawn bowls green. Since that time, they have created social garden spaces, a children’s play area and vegetable growing rows. They are now developing more space for people to bring and share seeds, seedlings, plants, food, and ideas plus they have plans to construct a shelter. Fawkner Food Bowls is an incorporated group.

A number of events, workshops and celebrations are organised at the garden including: soil, composting and companion planting workshops; the Fawkner Lane-way Festival and Fawkner Festas (where tomato seedlings are given away); passata making; and winter solstice celebrations.

The garden is open on Sundays for working bees, market stall, and socialising. On the second Sunday of each month, there is a food swap from 10.30am to 12.30pm. On the other Sundays, the garden is open from 10am to 1pm.

Condell Growers and Sharers Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Fitzroy
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

The community garden comprises 36 garden boxes. These used to be allocated to individuals but are now mainly communal, with everyone invited to sample the bounty. The garden is maintained by local residents – providing access to fresh food and encouraging sustainability.

There are monthly working bees, usually on the 2nd Saturday of every month, 10.30am-12.30pm.

There is an active composting program which aims to be reduce the food waste that goes into Yarra City’s rubbish bins and to create compost for the garden. If you would like to contribute your food waste, email them to arrange a time to participate in a 15-20 minute composting tutorial which will entitle you to participate in the program.

Rushall Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Fitzroy North
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is allotment-based, with some communal areas.

The garden comprises around 50 allotments plus some communal areas and composting facilities. You can become a member for an annual fee of $10, which then entitles you to participate in their regular working bees, work in the communal areas and share produce, as well as to join the waiting list for a plot. Note, however, that there is currently a long waiting list for plots (around 6 years).

The garden was established around 2004. It is part of the North Fitzroy Community Gardens Group (NFCGG) who aim to enhance the sustainability of the Fitzroy North community by:

  • Respecting prior ownership of the land by Indigenous Australians.
  • Maintaining an attractive urban space where people can grow plants predominantly for food and which is accessible to the local community to enjoy.
  • Promoting sustainable organic gardening techniques.
  • Fostering the sharing and development of a diversity of gardening skills.
  • Managing the garden by consensus in an open, participatory and non-discriminatory manner.
All Nations Kitchen Garden
Township/Suburb: Northcote
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based but membership is free.

What: Darebin Council collaborated with members of the Northcote Library Food Garden and the local communuity to develop this visible and accessible urban food demonstration site. The All Nation Kitchen Garden design incorporates permaculture principles and is based on a multi-layered garden of fruit trees, edible understory and ground cover.

Who: A group of local residents care for and manage the site in partnership with Council. The goal is to sustainably produce local food and to provide opportunities for education and community building.

When: Community gardening days are held on the first Saturday of each month, from 10am.

Northcote Community Gardens
Township/Suburb: Northcote
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is allotment-based.

What: The garden has 25 individual plots, some communal areas, a pond, an orchard in the making, and a small recreational park with a basketball hoop. The park has been planted out by the community garden’s members with indigenous local plants. They provide space to grow vegetables, herbs, fruits and they share information on all aspects of organic gardening as well as some permaculture principles. They all have different levels of gardening experience and beginners are welcome.

Who: There are around 28 members who manage the garden. All plots are typically allocated, but you can email them to be added to the waiting list. Interested members of the public are encouraged to attend the monthly working bees (see times below). Plots are rented out yearly and first preference is given to Northcote residents. They are all volunteers and the garden is managed through informal consensus with some primary office bearing roles being elected each year.

When: Working bees are held on the first Sunday of each month, from 1pm. Please bring a plate of food to share for afternoon tea if you are able to.

Northcote Library Food Garden
Township/Suburb: Northcote
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

What: The garden is a communal growing space open to all community members, with communal garden beds and a food forest. Although there are no individual plots, there are areas of the garden set aside for growing plants of particular interest or liking. The garden is maintained during regular communal planting, harvesting and working bee days, and gardeners are also encouraged to donate some extra time individually when they can.

Who: The garden is managed by a small group of dedicated residents. Community members can become involved as a friend of the garden (lending support and advice) or as a gardener.

When: Community gardening days are held on the second Sunday of each month, from 9am.

The garden also hosts a food swap on the second Saturday of the month, 11am-midday, organised by the Darebin Urban Harvesters.

Uniting Church Herb Garden and Orchard
Township/Suburb: Northcote
Notes (in their own words):

The Uniting Church has established a small orchard in the courtyard and a herb garden out the front facing High Street in Northcote. It is designed to be a place where people can take time out and relax. The herbs are used in Yuni’s Kitchen located at the back of the church courtyard.

All are welcome to enjoy the church spaces and participate in the many programs on offer. If you are interested in being involved with the gardening group, contact them by email.

Span Community House Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Thornbury
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based but membership is free.

What: The garden is a community shared space. There are no individual plots but produce is shared amongst those that attend, as well as used in the community lunch and cooking classes at Span. The garden is maintained with a watering system and by regular planting and harvesting. All produce is organic. The garden is a large space with a number of garden beds and areas producing vegetables, fruit and herbs. There is a shelter built with natural building techniques and materials that can be used for meetings or other activities, a propagation area, a seed and cuttings swap program, and a community mural. There are regular sustainability programs, classes and activities run throughout the year. The garden is access friendly for all.

Who: The garden is shared and maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers and community members, with the assistance and support of Span Community House, and regular working bees. All those participating have differing levels of skills, experience and physical abilities. New community members and gardening beginners are invited and encouraged to join the garden group and participate in Span’s activities whilst learning and enjoying the company and support of other community members.

Audrey Beard is the Coordinator of the community garden. Read an interview with Audrey.

Sylvester Hive Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Preston
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

What: Sylvester Hive community garden was built in partnership between Darebin Council, The Pavilion School and local residents on land generously provided by the school. The garden was launched in November 2016. With a border of fruit trees, 14 raised wicking beds for vegetables and herbs, storage container and shelter, seating, composting bays and a children’s sand pit, the garden has been designed as a welcoming space to meet with friends and neighbours.

Who: A group of local residents have formed to take care of the garden which they have named ‘Sylvester Hive’ (‘Sylvester’ is derived from the Latin for woodland and ‘Hive’ denotes a place where people meet and connect). The group meet regularly to discuss and agree on how the garden is to be managed, used, planted and harvested. The raised wicking beds are all cultivated communally and the harvest is shared at regular communal meals and celebrations.

When: The garden is open all week. Members meet regularly at the garden every Saturday, midday-3pm.

East Reservoir Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Reservoir
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is mostly allotment-based.

What: This garden is made up of 30 individual plots of varying sizes available to rent for an annual fee. The garden is conveniently located near the East Reservoir Senior Citizens Centre as well as the Reservoir Neighbourhood House (which has facilities to hold cooking demonstrations and workshops). Market days, food swaps, festivals and other celebrations are also regularly held at the garden.

Who: This is an access friendly and culturally diverse community garden. Everyone is welcome to become a member of the garden in some way. You can rent a plot to plant and grow your own food. Become a member of the garden committee to contribute to the running of the community garden. Or you can become a friend of the garden and meet with other gardeners and members to learn about gardening, swap tips and stories and help others learn.

There is a garden get together every Saturday from 10am to midday.

Newton Street Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Reservoir
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

This is a communal garden on public housing land associated with the East Preston Community Centre. The garden was established in late 2018 and The East Preston Community Centre, in partnership with DIVRS Urban Food Program, are continuing to develop it. Once fully developed, it will include shared vegetable growing areas, fruit trees, berries, food forest gardens and composting/worm farming facilities.

Local community members are invited to get involved in shaping the garden’s look and feel. This is a space where local residents can connect, share, learn and grow food locally. From planting, weeding and harvesting crops to designing what will be planted in the vacant beds – there’s plenty to do.

A gardening group, led by the DIVRS Urban Food Program, work in the garden on Thursday mornings, 9am-midday, and it is open to the general public throughout the week. Everyone is welcome to attend the Thursday morning sessions. Occasionally, there are bigger working bees.

Township/Suburb: Reservoir
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

What: At Your Community Health (YCH), there is a communal garden area with vegetables, 29 fruit trees, and some lawn. As well as planting and garden maintenance, they also use the space as a venue for activities and events. Their Men’s Shed is located on the edge of the garden and some of the guys get involved in the garden.

Who: People who visit YCH, staff, local residents and community members are all welcome to come and enjoy the garden.

When: There is someone in the garden on Thursday mornings, between 10am and midday.

Links Community Garden Lalor
Township/Suburb: Lalor
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public, with free membership (gold coin donation) and communal garden beds.

This is a new and developing community garden. The purpose of Links Community Garden Lalor is to foster community connections though the use of this space. It will include activities such as gardening, cooking, preserving, sustainability, sensory gardens, providing meals for those in need, upcycling, outdoor mothers or other social groups, eating or simply enjoying being in nature.

There are regular meetups at the garden, every Saturday, 10am-midday. All people of all ages are welcome, whether you’re a gardening wizard or don’t know a root from a branch.

Creeds Farm Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Epping
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

The garden is a communal garden where participants share both the gardening and the harvest. There are no fences, nor individual plots. The garden provides space for locals to share their knowledge and make new friends. It strives to enhance community connection in this relatively new community, and acts as a learning and demonstration centre for communal organic gardening.

A food swap is held at the garden on the last Sunday of every month, 10.30am-midday.

Triple G Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Epping
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based, but membership is free. Current membership is 6 people.

The garden is a creative place where people come together to grow fresh food, share, learn, relax and enjoy each other’s company. The garden’s core values are respect, honesty, integrity, inclusivity and creativity.

Bellfield Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Bellfield
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based.

The garden was incorporated in November 2014, and is entirely run by volunteers. The three main aims are:

1. To develop an open space community fruit and vegetable garden for individual community members and community groups who want to engage in, and learn about, sustainable gardening practices.

2. To provide a meeting place for individual community members and groups to develop a community gardening identity.

3. To promote the Bellfield Community Garden within the Bellfield neighbourhood, and across the Banyule council area and neighbouring council areas, and to form strong community partnerships to enhance and influence the success of the garden.

Bundoora Park Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Bundoora
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is allotment-based.

What: The garden is located within the Bundoora Park Farm. Within the farm, there is a fruit orchard including an urban farm with chooks and bees. The farm also supplies tools, water and manure.

Who: There are garden plots available for rent to the general public. Annual fees are $79 for a raised plot and $105 for a standard plot. There is a waiting list for these plots.

The Patch
Name: The Patch
Township/Suburb: Bundoora
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

The Patch is La Trobe University’s community garden located behind the Borchardt Library. Everyone is welcome to join and participate in their regular events, which include: gardening bees during semester; workshops; and social events (which often involve their harvests).

The Patch is always open, so feel free to water or do some weeding if it takes your fancy.

St Johns Riverside Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Heidelberg
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based, with partly communal beds and partly allotments.

Situated at Salt Creek’s meeting with the Yarra River, this sustainable food garden is a joint venture between the Banyule Anglican Church and the local community. Both individual and community plots are available and new members are very welcome. A gardening get-together occurs each month where seedlings are shared, compost is made, fascination is felt about the latest vegetables appearing and members always feel comfortable to try new planting experiences and see what happens. Workshops conducted have included building wicking beds, liquid fertilisers, pruning fruit trees and making hot compost.

Gardening in the cool evening riverside air is refreshing!

Macleod Organic Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Macleod
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership-based.

The Macleod Organic Garden started in 2015. They were fortunate to have received some grants from Banyule City Council to assist them in establishing the garden.

The garden is communally cultivated and the food raised is distributed between those who work in the garden, Macleod College and local organisations that provide food for those in need.

The site is two disused tennis courts in the grounds of Macleod College on the Somers Avenue boundary just north of the Basketball Stadium. The project is being run by Sustainable Macleod.

Watsonia Library Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Watsonia
Notes (in their own words):

The produce from this garden is freely available to any members of public who pass by.

With increasing awareness of climate change, a group of Watsonia residents decided to focus on producing some of their own food in a sustainable way. The Watsonia Library Community Garden has been producing organic food since late 2014.

The garden is based on a design influenced by Permaculture. The three main principles of Permaculture are “Care of the Earth; Care of People; and, Re-distribute Surplus”. By following these ideals, they aim to improve the fertility of our soils while growing a bountiful produce to share with the local community. The garden is a site for sharing and learning as they have regular guest speakers on topics such as seed saving, worm farming, composting and the history of significant trees in Banyule.

The garden area complements other programs offered by the library, for example a workshop on edible weeds and a demonstration from a fire twirling group!

A group of residents meets every Tuesday from 10-11am to tend the garden and to share a cup of tea. It is a social occasion allowing time to share tips on how to grow and prepare home grown produce. The foundations for an effective community garden have been completed with construction of a garden shed, worm farm, compost system, seed saving and raised garden beds. The garden is small in size but significant to those who care for it.

Garden of Plenty, Diamond Valley Library, Greensborough
Township/Suburb: Greensborough
Notes (in their own words):

The produce from this garden is freely available to any members of public who pass by.

The garden is open to the public 6 days per week and provides a valuable place of engagement, education and participation in sustainable living practices. The produce is available to be shared by the community and also to engage the concept of food sharing. It is a place which is open to all to enjoy either planting, harvesting or tending the garden. The installation of four wicking beds, with the help of Diamond Creek Men’s Shed, has meant the produce is thriving in all conditions and the boxes are at a great height for all to enjoy.

The garden has inter-generational appeal with programs including: storytimes to kindergartens and schools; workshops with schools with an environmental focus; monthly workshops to the general community; and a monthly food swap. The production of a number of food sources are also shared with the community, not only in the garden, but at events such as the Home Harvest Festival.

Associated regular events:
1. Working bee – every Thursday, 10-11am.
2. Food Swap – 2nd Saturday of the month, 10-11am.

Diamond Creek, Planter Boxes in Chute Street
Township/Suburb: Diamond Creek
Notes (in their own words):

The produce from these planter boxes is freely available to any members of public who pass by.

There are 7 planter boxes in Chute Street (5 on the north side of the road and 2 on the south side) plus a further 2 around the corner in Inglis Street. Each of these is a wicking bed. They were established in 2014.

Thrive, Diamond Creek
Township/Suburb: Diamond Creek
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership based. Membership is $20 annually for a whole family or $10 for a single person.

Thrive community garden is on a 1 acre block that has long been vacant due to the fact that it lies in a flood plain. While there is always the risk of further flooding, the soil is rich and ideal for growing. It was started in 2014.

As of Spring 2016, there were garlic, leeks, celery, silver beet and rainbow chard, snow peas, broad beans and various herbs, all doing well. There are around 30 fruit trees. There are also several large berry beds – boysens, raspberries and strawberries, along with gooseberries, black and red currants. Lavenders and calendulas, along with a wild flower bed, have been planted to attract bees and add more colour.

There is someone working at the community garden every Saturday afternoon between 1pm and 3pm, and on various days during the week. Everyone is welcome to come down and help out, and to take some of the crops that are growing there. It is a garden for all residents of Diamond Creek.

A food swap is held at the garden on the third Saturday of every month, 2-3pm.

Eltham Railway Station
Township/Suburb: Eltham
Notes (in their own words):

The produce from these planter boxes is freely available to any commuters or other members of public who pass by.

There are 2 planter boxes on the railway platform, both of them wicking beds. They were established on 18th September 2017. They are the first project by the Incredible Edible Eltham community.

Eltham, Planter Boxes outside healthAbility
Township/Suburb: Eltham
Notes (in their own words):

The produce from this planter box is freely available to any members of public who pass by.

There is a large planter box outside healthAbility at 917 Main Road, Eltham. It is under cover but irrigated. It was established in 2013.

Living & Learning Nillumbik Community Veggie Garden, Eltham
Township/Suburb: Eltham
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is membership based but membership is free.

The garden comprises several, large, raised beds. It is maintained by a group of volunteers who meet weekly on Thursdays, from 9-11.30am. New members are most welcome, whether you are an experienced gardener or absolute beginner. As well as growing fresh food to share or swap, you can also use the Living & Learning kitchen to make a meal from the harvest. Regular attendance is not required; rather, you can drop in when you like. You can join at any time and they just need you to register once.

Edible Hub, Hurstbridge
Township/Suburb: Hurstbridge
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

There are six wicking garden beds plus a compost station with three large bins. There are plans to expand the garden to include some fruit trees.

The garden had previously fallen into disuse but since April 2019 has been under the care of small group of volunteers whose aim is to provide a space for locals to connect and learn through the process of growing food, as well as sharing the resulting harvest with the community.

The produce from the beds is free for everyone to harvest, promoting the concepts of a sharing economy, and the use of communal land for the production of fresh, local food.

The beds are managed according to organic principles and where possible utilise recycled or re-purposed materials. The compost program aims to capture organic waste from the adjacent Community Hub and from local community and business, keeping waste out of landfill and providing compost to sustain the garden.

Volunteers generally meet on the fourth Thursday of the month at 9.30am to plan or carry out work in the garden. Anyone is welcome to attend and no ongoing commitment to the garden is required.

Willsmere Kitchen Garden
Township/Suburb: Kew
Notes (in their own words):

The garden is membership-based. Membership is a $50 one-off fee plus a yearly subscription fee depending on the size of the garden beds you have access to.

The garden is located in Yarra Bend Park in Kew – the largest area of natural bushland near the heart of Melbourne. It was started in 2017 as a collaboration between a group of residents from the neighbouring Willsmere Estate and Parks Victoria and provides a place to share a vision of growing our own food, strengthening community bonds and sharing gardening knowledge. They welcome everyone in the community to enjoy the garden, but ask that you respect the produce of individuals.

The garden’s first stage is designed to pay homage to the formal gardens of the neighbouring asylum and the site’s previous history as a kitchen garden that supplied food for the inmates and staff of the asylum. It features a central talking circle surrounded by seats that are designed to encourage conversations and community. Above-ground beds were donated by Bunnings Hawthorn in November 2018 and smaller community herb beds around the inner circle were created with recycled local materials.

Future possible developments include a second set of above-ground beds mirroring the first, a heritage fruit orchard, a garlic farm, more in-ground beds, grapevines, and communal spaces with paving, chairs & tables.

Doncaster Hill Community Garden
Township/Suburb: Doncaster
Notes (in their own words):

This garden is open to the public.

Set amongst the high rise of Doncaster Hill, this garden is an ‘open backyard’ where volunteers learn, play and appreciate growing local food. The emphasis is on collective fun, enjoying the space and coming together as a local community. Participants are rewarded with seed collections, skills workshops and food programs. There are no private plots. Most of the food grown is donated to local food banks and charities.

Regular working bees and skill development programs are run by Felicity Gordon. Join the Facebook group for dates and times.