Food and garden
Things you can do in the garden, Home Harvest, seed libraries and how you can get involved.
For more information, hands-on events, information and lots of nursery tips and tricks, visit the Edendale Community Environment Farm website.
In the garden
A sustainable garden not only looks great and is fun to be in, but can also enhance the passive design features of the house, improve air quality and water management and assist with food production. Sustainable gardens can also provide habitat and are important links for biodiversity.
Whatever your favourite style of garden, here are some tips to make your patch of paradise more sustainable:
- Collect and retain stormwater on site. Including rainwater tanks, rain gardens, swales and berms in strategic positions will help keep water away from your house, neighbouring properties and the street, mean less manual watering and healthier plants.
- Use natural and untreated landscaping materials. Chemicals and dyes from treated wood, paving, concrete and mulch can leach into the soil and into our waterways. If you are growing food in your garden, try to eliminate any treated material in the garden bed to prevent absorption into the plants.
- Use sustainably grown and managed timber for decking and garden features. Commonly used hardwoods, such as merbau, are imported from Papua New Guinea and Indonesia and are currently listed as threatened species.
- Retain soil from your property. The soil from your property is the best for your garden, retain as much topsoil from your land as possible to re-use in your new landscape. The topsoil contains lots of good bacteria, worms and nutrients that help your garden stay healthy
- Choose your pest control wisely. There are many eco-friendly pest control products available for both insects and weeds. If you have pets, consider carefully the effect any pest control product could have on your animals.
- Use indigenous plant species to improve the survival rate and reduce maintenance requirements. Indigenous plants have become accustomed to local conditions over many years and will tolerate the soil conditions, longer periods of drought and the temperature range better than plants that come from different parts of Australia.
- Grow some of your food. You don’t have to start with a large dedicated vegetable patch. Start small and try using existing garden beds. Inter-planting with ornamental plants with similar food and water requirements can look great and it confuses the insects that might want to feast on your food.
- Compost your food waste in either a compost bin or a worm farm. Homemade compost or worm tea is easy to make and it's full of nutrients and free food for your plants.
Indigenous species and vegetable seedlings propagated locally are available at:
Edendale Indigenous Plant Nursery
30 Gastons Road, Eltham 3095
Queensland Fruit Fly
Several Queensland Fruit Fly infestations have recently been found in the Nillumbik area.
Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF) is one of Australia’s worst horticultural pests. It is a serious threat to commercial fruit growers, hobby farmers, and home gardeners. The QFF lays her eggs in many common fruits, ‘fruiting vegetables’ and some native fruits. Inside the fruit the growing larvae cause the flesh to rot, making it unsaleable and undesirable to eat. QFF populations can increase very quickly!
Find videos and more information here.
Gardens for Wildlife
Nillumbik Gardens for Wildlife (G4W) is a partnership between Nillumbik Shire Council and community members to engage the public in creating habitat gardens for local wildlife.
The program offers a garden visit to local residents from two of our trained volunteer Garden Guides. They will provide encouragement and guidance on how to provide habitat for wildlife through gardening on private property.
More information here.