While the first two beds of St Helen’s Community Garden were built in Dec, it was not until Jun that the whole design was completed. The garden attracts constant interest from local residents and visitors, with people wandering through the garden to keep track of the veggie plantings, or to sit on the convenient ledges for a rest or a chat. The gardeners are always pleased to talk to visitors, and encourage anyone who is interested to join the group, which meets Sundays from 10 to 11am.
The garden was built with the assistance of a Matching Grant from Council, supplemented by further funds allocated by Council when the need for a professional design was recognised.
The garden is planted and maintained, and the produce shared, on a collaborative basis. The garden has been planted with some winter crops and also green manure, but the major planting will be in spring, when St Helen’s Gardeners will hold a community picnic to get the season started. The group is also planning to have a Sat afternoon gardening time as well as the Sun morning, beginning in spring.
The gardeners are often asked how they deal with passers-by picking the vegetables. In reality, this has been a very minor problem, and in fact we are more often given things than we suffer a loss. We have received a compost bin, seedlings, a garden chair and some donations, all of which we are very grateful for. We are trying to accommodate local needs by planting the long garden beds beside the path with herbs and salad greens which, when established, will be available for anyone to pick.