Photographs And Information about Community Gardening in South Gippsland
Community Gardening has become more popular especially for people who are thoughtful about their physical health and the environment. It is a place where people can get together, share seeds, resources, gardening knowledge and home grown produce in a community system that gives everyone a chance to contribute and get involved.
Manna Community Garden In Foster – Behind the Community House in Station Street Foster, you’ll find a delightful little garden growing an abundance of vegetables and fruit. There are no external fences, it is a place for everyone to enjoy. Children can wander through the park and pick the peas or apples, smell the lavender, rosemary and sage and interact in a productive garden environment that stimulates the senses.
Several years ago this block of land was vacant except for the 100 year old gum tree that sits prominently to one side, when as inspired gardener, Juneen Schulz enquired about putting it to practical use. It wasn’t long before she was joined by a group of enthusiastic people who wanted to learn more about gardening and share their time with other like-minded folk.
Anyone is welcome join in and have fun making scarecrows, meditating, sowing, propagating, finding out how to make an edible food forest and so much more. There’s a hand made solid timber banquet table that is fit for the finest picnic while you enjoy the serenity of this delightful park like garden.
Rhubarb – The rhubarb here is growing in well fertilized, organic mulch and is eagerly waiting to have some of it’s stems pulled and turned into a dessert or jam. Remember to only use the stems and put the leaves in your compost bin or worm farm as they contain oxalic acid that is toxic to most animals and humans when consumed.
Cut the stems into 1 cm lengths after washing, then place them in a saucepan with only the tiniest bit of water. Boil until they turn into a pulp when stirred with a wooden spoon, adding sugar or honey to taste. Let the pan cool and add fresh or whipped cream to make a luscious, quick and tasty dessert. Combining apples with the rhubarb adds a natural sweetness that reduces the amount of sugar needed for sweetening.
Tomatoes – Cherry tomatoes self seed amongst the mulch and also come up readily along the pathways. Most community gardeners plant and grow a variety of heritage and heirloom types which tend to have a better flavour, though have shorter keeping qualities.
Preferred varieties for their sweetest flavour and best tasting are –
- Broad Ripple Yellow Currant
- Black Krim
- Tommy Toe
- Black Russian
- Green Zebra
- Beams Yellow Pear
- Yellow Brandywine
- Orange Strawberry
- Lemon Drop
- Jaune Flammee
- Brown Berry
- AMISH PASTE
- BIG RED – Grosse lisse
- OXHEART – BULLOCK HEART
- MORTGAGE LIFTER
- RED BRANDYWINE
- SAN MARZANO
- ROUGE DE MARMANDE