After officially opening the Springwood Community Garden in 2017, ABC’s gardening guru Costa Georgiadis has returned to celebrate the garden’s fourth birthday.
The host of ABC’s Gardening Australia, Costa joined around 450 locals for a yarn and to host a wicking bed (self-watering garden bed) workshop, as part of the celebrations.
Born out of the ashes of the October 2013 bushfires to help people heal from the trauma, the gardens—established by CatholicCare Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains—are now a thriving space for the entire community.
CatholicCare Community Engagement Manager Celia Vagg said the community garden, set on half an acre, started as a blank canvas and now includes a permaculture food forest with 50 fruit trees, two worm farms, a bush tucker space and a yarning circle.
The neighbouring primary school, St Thomas Aquinas has two garden beds, as does the Moochy Family Day Care group.
‘We’re delighted that Costa could come back to see how much progress has been made in just four years,’ Celia said. ‘It’s a really special space for people of all ages to learn new skills, meet new people, relax in the garden and for kids to play.’
Celia said experienced gardeners volunteered their time to teach beginners, and people who attend the twice weekly working bees take home the fresh harvest, all grown organically.
The fourth birthday celebrations were held on Saturday, 20 February 2021 at the Springwood Community Garden, 168 Hawkesbury Road, Springwood.
Along with Costa’s ‘wicking bed’ workshop, visitors could also learn about ‘Farm it Forward’ and the ‘Edible Garden Trails’, a Blue Mountains project to inspire local gardeners to grow their own healthy food.
The family of Mrs Margaret Sibbald, who was the inspiration behind the idea to create the community garden after losing her house in the 2013 bushfires, planted a tree in her memory. Mrs Sibbald passed away last year.
‘We’re honoured to be able to remember Margaret this way,’ Celia said. ‘Her vision inspired us all and the gardens, that mean so much to so many people, would not exist without her.’