Friday, 11 December 2015

Moving Feast Garden at University of the Sunshine Coast

Yesterday was the final workshop we are running in 2015 at the Moving Feast community garden at the University of Sunshine Coast. Evan and I are helping the University to establish these gardens as an outdoor teaching and learning space where classes can be held, research can take place, clinics can be led, and students can learn useful practical skills, as well as a great place to hang out, and for local community to come.

This year we have run almost weekly programs on permaculture to help create the garden and build skills. It has been a free program for students and local community that weaves together learning something new, getting in and doing some work in the garden, and preparing and sharing a feast from the garden.

Now that the gardens are starting to grow and flower they are attracting more people and interest.
In the gardens, I've also led a workshop for the newly forming Sunshine Coast Community Gardens Network supported by the Sunshine Coast Council and the University. The University wrote an article about the process for their website: http://www.usc.edu.au/explore/usc-news-exchange/news-archive/2015/november/usc-boosts-growing-interest-in-soils

For the last few sessions of the year I focussed on facilitating the design and implementation of a sensory garden. The garden will be filled with a diversity of culinary and medicinal herbs and other elements, that will stimulate all the senses. It is being established as a healing garden for the Occupational Therapy students to use in their clinics, but I imagine it will be a popular part of the garden for many visitors.

Students were delighted to dig the first ever sweet potato grown in the campus garden.
While I was leading the sensory garden session, Maia decided to go and harvest the coriander seed, and Hugh took som herb cuttings and made up his own potted herb garden.


A working document capturing ideas from the group for the sensory garden area.
At the last gardening session, all of a sudden we were inundated by local kids so curious about what we were doing - they had so many questions and wanting to taste everything. Their enthusiasm was fabulous.
This is a link to the Moving Feast Newsletter put out by the university highlighting the achievements this year. http://us9.campaign-archive1.com/?u=c73f630e64ec01ea31b9d9cb4&id=75431af003

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