List of Darebin Community Gardens

Northcote Library Food Garden

Contact: Allison Wedding Ph: (0431) 646 565 or Ivor Otley: (0407) 680 822 E-mail:  northcotelibraryfoodgarden@gmail.com

What:  The garden is a communal growing space open to all community members, with communal garden beds and a food forest. Although there are no individual plots, there are areas of the garden set aside for growing plants of particular interest or liking. The garden is maintained during regular communal planting, harvesting and working bee days, and gardeners are also encouraged to donate some extra time individually when they can.

Who:  The garden is managed by a small group of dedicated residents. Community members can become involved as a friend of the garden (lending support and advice) or as a gardener.

Where:  Northcote Library, 32-38 Separaton Street, Northcote

When:  Community Gardening Days are held on the second Sunday of the month from 10am

Northcote Community Gardens

Contact:  E-mail: northcotecommunitygardens@yahoo.com.au

What:  We are a small organic community garden with 25 individual plots, some communal areas, a pond, an orchard in the making and a small recreational park with a basketball hoop. The park has been planted out by the community garden members with indigenous local plants.

We provide space to grow vegetables, herbs, fruits and we share information on all aspects of organic gardening as well as some permaculture principles. We all have different levels of gardening experience and beginners are welcome!

Who:  Currently there are around 28 members who manage the garden. At present, all plots are allocated, but you can email us to be added to the waiting list. Interested members of the public are encouraged to attend the monthly working bees (see times below).

Plots are rented out yearly and first preference is given to Northcote residents. We are all volunteers and the garden is managed through informal consensus with some primary office bearing roles being elected each year.

Where:  Hartington Street, Northcote (next to the Northcote train station)

When:  Working bees are usually held on the first Sunday of the month from 1:00 pm (please bring a plate of food to share for afternoon tea if you are able to).

For more information and to see what we’ve been up to lately check our blog!

Fairfield Community Garden 

Contact: Ngaire Bates or Kay Hackworth  Email: fairfieldcommgarden@gmail.com

What: The Fairfield Community Garden is located at the end of Hamilton Street Fairfield in between the train line and walkway to Station Street. The community garden was established approximately 12 years ago and is an initiative of Interact Fairfield Disability Services. It is a dynamic work space, all the time developing according to the energies and interests of participants. It has recently begun a new phase of consolidation and development.

Who: The community garden is comprised of approximately 20 plots that are rented out annually by individuals or families who reside in the local area, or by community groups engaged in sustainable activities and which are able to contribute consistently to the garden culture.

Where: 1 Hamilton Street Fairfield

For more information, please go to our website 

East Reservoir Community Garden

Contact: Jess on 0423 088 722 (Monday’s only)  E-mail: eastreservoirgarden@gmail.com

What:  This garden is made up of 30 individual plots of varying sizes available to rent for an annual fee. The garden is conveniently located near the East Reservoir Senior Citizens Centre as well as the Reservoir Neighbourhood House with facilities to hold cooking demonstrations and workshops. Market days, food swaps, festivals and other celebrations are also regularly held at the garden.

Who: This is an access friendly and culturally diverse community garden. Everyone is welcome to become a member of the garden in some way. You can rent a plot to plant and grow your own food. Become a member of the garden committee to contribute to the running of the community garden. Or you can become a friend of the garden and meet with other gardeners and members to learn about gardening, swap tips and stories and help others learn.

Where:  Next to the East Reservoir Senior Citizens Centre, 7A Strathmerton St, East Reservoir

All Nations Kitchen Garden

Contact: If you are interested in getting involved, contact environment@darebin.vic.gov.au, or drop by the site on a Sunday when the group are having a working bee.

What: Darebin Council collaborated with members of the Northcote Library Food Garden and the local communuity to develop a highly visible and accessible urban food demonstration site. Located in All Nations Park, the All Nation Kitchen Garden design incorporates permaculture principles and is based on a multilayered garden of fruit trees, edible understory and ground cover.

Who: A passionate group of local residents care for and manage the site in partnership with Council. The goal is to sustainably produce local food and to provide opportunities for education and community building.

Where: All Nations Park, Separation Street, Northcote (behind Northcote Plaza and opposite Santa Maria College),

When: Community Gardening Days are held on the first Sunday of the month from 10am

Sylvester Hive Community Garden

Contact: If you are interested in getting involved, contact secretary Hendrik Falk: hendrik.falk@gmail.com or 0420 353 572. For more information see www.facebook.com/sylvesterhive/

What: Sylvester Hive community garden was built in partnership between Darebin Council, The Pavilion School and local residents on land generously provided by the school. The garden was launched in November 2016. With a border of fruit trees, 14 raised wicking beds for vegetables and herbs, storage container and shelter, seating, composting bays and a children’s sand pit, the garden has been designed as a welcoming space to meet with friends and neighbours.

Who: A group of more than 10 local residents have formed to take care of the garden which they have named ‘Sylvester Hive’ (‘Sylvester’ is derived from the Latin for ‘woodland’ and ‘Hive’ denotes a place where people meet and connect). The group meet regularly to discuss and agree on how the garden is to be managed, used, planted and harvested, and are making the most of this fantastic community asset. The raised wicking beds are all cultivated communally and the harvest is shared at regular communal meals and celebrations.

Where: On the grounds of the Pavilion School, corner of Dean and Gray Streets, Preston

When: The garden committee meet regularly Thursdays at 7pm and Saturdays at 9am in the garden

Sprout Community Garden

Contact:  Sprout Office Phone: (o3) 94845565 or email sprout@mindaustralia.org.au

What: Sprout is a support program for people recovering from mental health issues or those at risk of homelessness. The garden was established as a constructive communal space for people in the program to garden and cook as a group. The garden comprises fruit and vegetable gardens, a nursery and a number of communal areas, including a kitchen, outdoor eating and gathering place as well as a wood fired pizza oven.

There is a market and open day on Thursdays from 1-4pm where organically grown produce, seeds / seedlings are sold.

Sprout Community Market is held on the first  Thursday of every month (excluding June, July, August) from 3 – 7pm with stalls selling fresh local produce and seedlings, art and craft. There is also music and activities to enjoy.

Who: The Garden is run by Mind Australia and welcomes people from Darebin area who are experiencing mental health issues, drug and alcohol challenges, are at risk of becoming homeless, or are already homeless. Support is provided by developing skills which are transferable to the broader employment market, as well as linking participants with community enterprises like Sprout Community Market.

The garden operates as a communal space  for the use of program participants. Although there are no garden plots available to the general public, please contact the Sprout Office to find out about the many rewarding volunteering opportunities available. The whole community is welcome to attend or get involved in the market / open days, just by simply attending or by donating homegrown produce or preserves to the stalls or busking on the day.

Where:  40 Clapham Street, Thornbury (Corner of Clapham and Watt St)

Bundoora Park Community Garden

Contact: Bundoora Park Reception Ph: (03) 8470 8170

What: The Bundoora Park Community Garden is located within the Bundoora Park farm. Within the farm, there is a fruit orchard including an urban farm with chooks and bees. The farm also supplies tools, water and manure.

Who: There are garden plots available for rent to the general public. Annual fees are $79 for a raised plot and $105 for a standard plot. NOTE There is currently a waiting list for plots.

Where: Bundoora Park, 1069 Plenty Road, Bundoora, VIC 3083 (15km from Central Melbourne)

Uniting Church Herb Garden and Orchard 

Contact: If you are interested in being involved with the Volunteer Gardening Group, please contact admin@chalice.org.au or Ph: (03) 9482 2884

What: The Uniting Church has established a small orchard in the courtyard and a herb garden out the front facing High Street in Northcote. It is designed to be a place where people can take time out and relax. The herbs are used in Yuni’s Kitchen located at the back of the church courtyard. The church also hosts a regular food swap on the second Saturday of the month, organised by the Darebin Urban Harvesters – check out their Facebook page here

Who: All are welcome to enjoy the church spaces and participate in the many programs on offer

Where:  251 High Street, Northcote

Sunnyfields Community Garden

Contact: Cameron Healey: chealey@northcotebaptist.net.au or Colin Lynch: cololynch@bluep.com

Who we are: Sunnyfields Community Garden was created in 2013 in partnership with Cultivating Community and the Northcote Baptist Church. The garden provides a vibrant space for people to come together and share their passion for growing food and community.

What we do: The garden provides 28 garden beds for members of the local Darebin community to grow their own food. Regular meetings and working bees are held where all are welcome. We provide gardening tips and advice and also hold gardening and composting workshops throughout the year.

Where:  540 High St Northcote

Your Community Health Garden (formally Darebin Community Health)

Contact: Annie Grant Ph: (03) 8470 1822 or annie.grant@ych.org.au

What: At Your Community Health (YCH) we have a communal garden area with vegetables, 29 fruit trees, and some lawn. As well as planting and garden maintenance, we also use the space as a venue for activities and events. Our Men’s Shed is located on the edge of the garden – some of the guys get involved in the garden while some play bocce on the lawn.

Who: People who visit YCH, staff, local residents and community members are all welcome to come and enjoy the garden.  If you would like to be involved, there is someone in the garden on Thursday mornings  between 10 and 12 or contact Annie.

Where: At the rear of YCH ,125 Blake Street (on the Corner of Crevelli street) East Preston

Span Community House Community Garden

Contact: Span Community House  Ph: (03) 9480 1364  E-mail: info@spanhouse.org

What: The garden is a community shared space.  There are no individual plots but produce is shared amongst those that attend, as well as used in the community lunch and cooking classes at Span.  The garden is maintained with a watering system and by regular planting and harvesting.  All produce is organic. The garden is a large space with a number of garden beds and areas producing vegetables, fruit and herbs.  There is a shelter built with natural building techniques and materials that can be used for meetings or other activities, a propagation area, a seed and cuttings swap program as well as a community mural.  There are regular sustainability programs, classes and activities run throughout the year.  The garden is access friendly for all.

Who: The garden is shared and maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers and community members, with the assistance and support of Span Community House, and regular working bees.  All those participating have differing levels of skills, experience and physical abilities.  New community members and gardening beginners are invited and encouraged to join the garden group and participate in Span’s activities, whilst learning and enjoying the company and support of other community members.

Where: 64 Clyde St, Thornbury