Growing for the good of the community, Artarmon Parklands Community Gardens (APCG) in New South Wales is a place for green thumb therapy and friendly foraging, but more importantly, it’s a place where all are welcome.
On what was once an old bowling green grows veggies, flowers, fruits and herbs, this is the hub and home of the Artarmon Community Gardens (APCG). Local legend Gary is a proud member of the APCG, a shared community garden he says that centers itself around “sharing, inclusiveness and accessibility” where the feeling of “social connection, caring for people, animals and our planet” is always put into practice.
The APCG is evergreen with gardening guru’s and has grown from a small team to a fully flourished group of 50. But the past few years haven’t been all rosy, “when we were challenged by the drought, we could only hand water with watering can”, Gary says. “And when the drought broke, COVID-19 came in, forcing us to restrict the number of people working in the garden significantly.”
“Our garden isn’t a small one. A lot of hours are spent keeping plants alive and thriving. So, you can imagine how we needed to overcome these challenges to produce the highest quality fruits and vegetables.”
Gary still remembers his first encounter with Local Matters. “We heard about the Local Matters program by a garden coordinator in a fellow group. Naturally it made sense when our new garden was established that we entered the program. We were allocated a month in April, which helped greatly due to the aforementioned COVID-19 restrictions.”
“Aside from helping with the ongoing costs of soil, natural fertiliser, seeds and plants, the funding we received from Grill’d aided in harvesting our rainwater and solar power. The funding also went to our summer crop and the tools we manage in the garden”.
Cementing his local legend status, Gary took his budding community spirit in to see Lucienne (Luci), our restaurant manager at Chatswood. “I had a few discussions about how the team at Grill’d could interact with our community and learn what we do.” Gary invited team members to the garden for a show and tell, “we ended up planting some potatoes, which we labelled the Grill’d Potato. This resulted in quite a sizeable harvest of over a kilo of spuds!"
With near-future plans of implementing a water system and solar-powered pumps, APCG garden continues to grow. We’re stoked that Local Matters has helped them along the way.