All’s green and healthy in the garden

Garden collective member Megan Vincent, from Yackandandah, Natasha Terpstra, of Gateway Health, Mirambeena volunteer Phil Bell and Charles Sturt University’s John Rafferty, at the Kerr Sustainability Centre. Picture: KYLIE ESLER

Garden collective member Megan Vincent, from Yackandandah, Natasha Terpstra, of Gateway Health, Mirambeena volunteer Phil Bell and Charles Sturt University’s John Rafferty, at the Kerr Sustainability Centre. Picture: KYLIE ESLER

FIVE years of hard work is bearing fruit at a Thurgoona vegetable patch.

And as members of the Hume Murray Community Gardening Collective found at the Kerr Sustainability Centre yesterday, it's all about fresh produce.

A garden constant has been John Rafferty from Charles Sturt University.

“It has been a slow process where people come in, build new things then go,” he said.

“Ninety per cent of my students hadn’t seen a broccoli flower before visiting the garden.”

Mirambeena Community Centre volunteer Phil Bell, on his first visit to the garden, said he was keen to learn about how different cultures grew and cooked food.

There are 20 community gardens from Corowa to Yackandandah in the collective. Newcomers are always welcome.

Gateway Community Health’s Anna Mackinlay said apart from fresh, healthy food and building skills, gardens, could improve health.

“Research shows being near green spaces helps reduce depression, anxiety and other health problems,” she said.

“For older people, shared gardens offer social contact, which help them avoid depression and heart disease.”

The initiative is run by Healthy Together Wodonga and Gateway Health Wodonga.

The next meeting will be held on October 1 at the Yackandandah Community Garden.

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