The last month has seen a works’ program at the community garden. Chris Newman orchestrated the trenching, laying of water pipe and water sensors for 6 new taps throughout the garden plus a water meter to measure our usage. This will improve the efficient working of the garden with a tap close to wherever watering is needed. The days of pulling long hoses around the garden are over! In addition, line has been laid to allow water from the rain tanks to be pumped through the garden, powered by our 240v off-grid solar system.

The upshot of the work is very muddy ground. Emily, Nina, Paul, Terry and Ed have been both removing the wood chip on the paths to make way for the trenching but also re-laying the weed mat and covering it with fresh wood chip. The old woodchip was so broken down that it is now excellent ‘compost’ for the garden beds and has been added to them.

On May 25 we heard that we were successful in our application for a second tool shed courtesy of the Jagajaga Electorate Community Volunteer Grants. This will enable us to lock up our mowers, mulchers and garden tools making them secure at last. Taking them out of the tool library will allow us to have a ‘clean’ shed essentially, for such items as our first aid equipment and library as well as the tools we lend. Chris was quick off the mark in ordering the tool shed and it is now set up in the garden. Prior to its arrival Ed emptied and relocated, and refilled 2 of the round corrugated beds to make way for it.

Chris has also been making the garden COVID safe with posters, new protocols and hand washing equipment.

Judy Ganter took the opportunity to take our library home and catalogue it and set it up again.

The whole garden has been weeded. There are new plantings of carrot, beetroot, potatoes, kale and brassicas. All the garlic is shooting and looking extremely healthy, and has been netted to keep the cockatoos from nipping off the shoots, dropping them and disappearing! And all the compost bins have new material composting away for spring use.

Seedlings have been potted both at the garden and at Robin’s where her potting shed is at full capacity. We will have broccoli, cauliflower, silverbeet, various lettuce varieties, corn salad, purple mizuna, parsley, perennial onions and primulas available when the garden reopens, hopefully on 24 June.

Councillor Tom Melican is organising a hard rubbish collection for us.

Thank you to everyone who has worked hard at the garden. I stress ‘worked hard’ as this has not been like pre-COVID days with a lot of social interaction. Each person has worked solidly on their tasks with none of the usual benefits of being at the garden.

The Meditation Garden has also been weeded by Anna, Sophie and Fiona but that is a big job with more weeding required.

* Photo of 3 members with new tool shed *