Monday, September 28, 2009

Birthing a Community Garden

I'd never seen a community garden before, until I visited Fullarton Fern Ave Garden. It was wonderful, so well organised and just a peaceful place to be. But I kept looking around wondering why there were so many broad beans. I had no idea that 'community gardening' usually meant hiring your own plot (yes, I've been living under a rock). I understand now that there are many kinds of community gardens, and the type that appealed to me the most is a communal garden where everyone looks after all of the vegetables and takes their share. This way offers good use of the land and a wide, organised array of available produce. This probably wouldn't work so well with common land, but on private property where one person can oversee it... the cogs started ticking...

But what nerve do I have creating a community garden? I'm only 31, have been gardening for a whole 3 years and in the grand scheme of things don't know that much about gardening (although my ego would vehemently like to contend that). AND I don't have much of a garden yet.

Well I could sit around for a few years waiting for knowledge to seep into my brain from books, people and trial and error, and slowly build up my garden until it's perfect and then market it. But I realised that's not really the point. Why not involve the community in the evolving process so they can develop what they want. Besides, if I do all the work, then there will be nothing left to do and kinda defeat the purpose.

I have a bit of an irrational fervent desire to involve the community in sustainable living. I live on 21 acres of land and have plenty of water. If I can't sustain myself who can? And what a waste on one family. If I could feed say 10 families, what a fantastic way to support the environment. Problem is I just can't do it on my own, and very rarely will a person accept something for nothing, so I've asked for help, in exchange for vegetables - hence Aramor Farm Share Garden.

I've done a little bit of advertising and had a little bit of interest. There is probably room left for a couple more people if anyone local wants in.

So keep an eye on this spot. I'll be blogging the trials and tribulations of the garden. Hopefully the last blog won't involve 'hard and basket' in the same line!

And in the mean time, if anyone reading this would like to share any helpful information with me, or share their experience with community gardening I'd LOVE to hear it!


I had no idea how many times I'd have to repeat the spelling of this name a year down the track, and how many furrowed eyebrows it would produce. It's still worth it, however, because it's meaningful to me.

The sign on the gate when we purchased the property in '06 was 'Oak Drive'. Hmm, original, I thought. Well, it does have lovely Red Oaks lining the driveway, but a place so enchanting needed something more. Aramor was a bit of a play on Amore (of course) plus had many letters from my own name, and also sounded a little bit like a character from Lord of The Rings. Okay, and I like made-up words that don't mean anything!

A friend of mine jokes about my 'hobbit-land' as though it's a place that I can retreat away from the cares of the world. Very fitting, until I decided to invite the world in...