Community and Council Working Together for Food Growing Initiatives


Joynton Park edible community, garden patch. Gadigal Ave, Zetland, Sydney, Australia - near the undercover BBQ area

This is a good news update, regarding the community garden patch at Joynton Park, Zetland, Sydney, Australia (food growing patch).

You may recall that the garden patch had deteriorated to the point of needing to be replaced.

The Parks Department of the City of Sydney came to the Green Square Growers rescue, by recently carriering out some urgent repairs.

A large piece of formply has been attached to the front of the garden patch.  This repair isn’t a permanent solution but will give GSG approximately 12 months before we will have to replace the garden bed.

Within this 12 months time the Green Square Growers will:

* update / replace and potentially extend other garden beds, that GSG has installed in the area.
* replace the garden bed mentioned above and potentially extend it.
* continually work alongside City Council, local residents and all those who are keen to help.  For the community and by the community!

Early Winter Storms for Greater Sydney


What a difference a week makes. Last week I was gardening in a short sleeve top, while this week, warnings were issued not to leave the house for non essential travel.

The photograph is the view from our balcony window.  It is actually in colour – I think it depicts the early winter and stormy conditions rather well. 

Very saddly three people have lost their lives, in what has been called ‘the worst storm in NSW for a decade’. Full houses have been washed away – floating down rivers.

Next week I have family visiting from Queensland.  For my International readers, Queensland is tropical – the second largest State of Australia to the North East. Their catch phrase is; beautiful one day, perfect the next.

I have warned them to be prepared – pack warm clothes, really warm clothes. I am concerned.

At this point of Autumn, the cold conditions are here to stay but I am hoping to see the sun again soon – we don’t want to completely freak out the Queenslanders. Let’s hope they don’t watch the news.

An Inclusive, Always Opened Community Garden in Sydney

Over three years ago, a small but inspired group of Green Square locals, had a vision – install tiny community garden patches throughout the Green Square area of Sydney.

As one of the co-founders of ‘The Green Square Growers‘, we rebelled against the idea of having a traditionally fenced community garden.  For us it was paramount that our community garden patches were inclusive and accessible to anyone, anytime – no fence, gates or restrictive membership.

Last Saturday, The Green Square Growers gathered to give one of our patches some care and love.

Personally what I most love about the garden patches, is we don’t know all who care and use them. Sit for awhile near one of the patches, on a weekend or even after work hours.  Eventually you will encounter a ‘phantom’ local gardener.  They plant, pick, harvest, water and enjoy their local garden patch in their own time and in their own way – planting, picking, harvesting, watering and caring.

On Saturday, I watched from a distance as a young family gathered around the garden patch, just after The Green Square Growers left.  They have never attended a Green Square Growers gathering and probably have never engaged on our Facebook page but to me they are the reason our inclusive vision has been successful.

Quietly and respectively I listened as the family explored the garden patch together.  “What’s that Dad?” asks the youngest child. “Tomatoes and I think that’s rosemary….try some mint”.

The conversation and interaction with the garden patch warmed my heart.

Some Green Square Growers at the Tote Library garden patch, in Zetland

Big Red Dog Bath Tub

Do you remember that big red tub that I found on the side of the road?

Remember I mentioned it would make an excellent doggie bath tub and hence brought it home?  (I saved it from being chucked out and headed for landfill).

Happy to report, the big red tub has not only found a new home but has also found a new use.





The Dog Shampoo we used was supplied by a good friend of mine.  Made with goats milk and is soap free and has no harsh chemicals.  It is also pH balanced and is an Australian made and owned company.

If you are interested, here is my friend’s Facebook page (she sells the shampoo).

Pet Shampoo that is soap free, pH balanced, has no harsh chemicals and is Australian made and owned

Look What I Found On My Morning Run!

Just about every week day morning, I take Mini and Cooper for a run before I start work.  While running, it never ceases to amaze me what I discover people in my local neighbourhood have thrown away.

It is not unusual for me to leave for my run with just two white fluffy dogs, yet return with two dogs and a good little ‘find’ that I have picked up along the way.

Just have a look at what I have found in the last two weeks.

A selection of things I have found people were throwing out in Sydney

Let me assure you that I am not a hoarder.   Everything I ‘pick up’ I have a need for (saves me money and the items were saved from landfill).  Read my recent post about our huge free ‘garage sale’ give away which will confirm that I often have massive clean ups.

Most of the items I pick up are garden pots that I re-pot, replant and add to our backyard courtyard.

Here are some of the garden pots (which have been replanted) that I have previously saved from landfill.

Cooper with some of our pot plants in our inner City of Sydney courtyard

My most recent find while on my morning runs, was a huge red tub.  I am sure everyone in the neighbourhood thought I was strange running along with two dogs and this huge red tub that I had picked up.  Thought this would make an excellent bath tube for Mini & Cooper as their old one died the other day.

Here is Mini checking to make sure she would fit inside (with a little help from Mummy).

Mini trying out her new 'doggy bath' which I found on the side of the road

Then today, I saw this on the side of the road:

Items being thrown out on the side of the road in Sydney

No I didn’t pick up the ink jet printer and the cute little white side table but hoping someone else does.

Here is a tip ***  If you do have stuff that you no longer need, instead of throwing it away, place a free ad in Free Cycle for your local area.  You will be surprised how someone will want it and will come by and pick it up from you………… isn’t that better than throwing stuff away?

An Easy Way To Help Save Australia’s Wilderness

Would you like to know a very simple and easy way to help save our native forests?

Sign the pledge that you individually or your business will not buy Reflex paper.

Join thousands of Australians asserting their commitment to sustainability and the environment by NOT purchasing Reflex Paper until its producer, Australian Paper, stops sourcing from native forests.  Sarhn McArthur Photography signed the pledge today.

Personally I am disgusted that Australian Paper (Reflex) would make the decision to continue to destroy Australia’s natural forests when there are other sustainable options.  Therefore I have decided Reflex does not deserve my support.

Below is my recent video capturing Wilderness Society’s Sad Clowns Protest against Reflex and Officeworks (who continue to sell Reflex paper).

You can see the photographs on my Sarhn McArthur Photography Facebook page (police were called to the Bondi Officeworks).




See Wilderness Society’s website for which office, copy paper they recommend us to buy.