Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

Well, it has been a hot and dry summer. The garden beds were really dry but quite a few things survived. Luckily for us, the rain arrived right on cue. A little drizzle here, another downpour there and before you know it the garden will be brimming with life again. No time to lose. This year we are starting bright and early with greens and tomatoes for the tuckshop.

The Mandarin tree survived and with a bit of trimming and TLC the orange tree is steadily coming back to life. It was also a very nice surprise to see a cucumber vine in one of the beds and a pumpkin vine in the compost.

5 of the beds in the tuckshop area have been restocked with compost, biodynamic lifter and coir peat to lock the moisture in. Thanks to donations from parents at school, 3 beds are now covered with shade cloth. This should help starting greens early. A few volunteers did an outstanding job of weeding around the grow beds.

The kids are really excited to bring their first food scraps for the worm towers. A new addition of worms should come in shortly. We are also planning to use more watering pots to allow for steady watering.

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Comment by Dave Riley on February 5, 2019 at 2:40

Mind you first term is hot in any school garden.

That's a great setup there, Valerie.

Of interest is that NSW education dept has now incorporated 'gardening' in the primary and secondary school syllabus.

Not that I'm a teacher but tweaking the syllabus for garden-based results is very doable. I know this because our gardening focus changes each year and with each new principal. So there have been many 'gardens' in the one place.

We've been experimenting with pawpaw and banana as perennials and shade groves -- replacing what we called  the 'Chill Out'  hut and the frog pond has been very successful as a learning hub.

We've just built a handwashing sink which gives us a better visiting protocol. The new automatic sprinkler system changes  management too.

But I have no idea what we'll be doing as garden sessions this year as everything keeps changing. Once the new grades settle in then they'll  be brought to the garden.

Last year we did a lot of measuring, keeping records, weighing, eating, labeling, setting up experiments... Not quite what I prefer as it isn't 'gardening' as a hands-on thing. We did the seed raising of course but curriculum pressures can be challenging for a sort of holistic approach to the soil and harvest.

Comment by Andrew Cumberland on February 4, 2019 at 17:58

Not only healthy and practical but darn cute as well. 

Comment by Russell James on February 4, 2019 at 13:52

Its so good to see children being encouraged to connect to a garden area and with the idea of where REAL food actually comes from. 

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Vetiver grass helps to stabilise soil and protects it against erosion.  It can protect against pests and weeds. Vetiver is also used as animal feed. (Wiki.)

GrowVetiver is a plant nursery run by Dave & Keir Riley that harvests and grows Vetiver grass for local community applications and use. It is based in Beachmere, just north of Brisbane, Australia.

Place your business add here! ($5 per month or $25 for 9 months)

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