FAQS + INFO
The March Street Community Gardens Group (MSCGG) came into existence following the Newcastle City Council (NCC) adopting a Community Gardens Program in 1999. In June, 2000, NCC published ‘Community Gardens’, a booklet which was the official guide to the community greening volunteer training program, and it was expected that all community garden groups use it.
The MSCGG has its own charter, which spells out its mission statement, aims and objectives. In addition, the MSCGG has a set of rules which it expects its members to abide by, following their induction.
The MSCGG is an autonomous group of people who have been permitted by Newcastle City to make use of a designated area of land and materials in the March Street Reserve.
Members of the group – apart from making use of an allotted plot – take part in a variety of activities such as:
- worm farms
- compost making
- fruit trees
- plant sales
- honey sales
- bus trips to various places of interest, e.g. botanical gardens, other community gardens, members’ gardens
- listening to invited speakers who tell of their hobby or skill, e.g. growing orchids, bee keeping and the like.
- educational talks.
Friday is the most popular day for retirees, who arrive at around 09:00 to garden and then participate in the “Happy Hour”, which commences at 10:00. This is the time for a cup or tea or coffee… with biscuits or cake… swapping news, and telling of things of interest with friends.
The first and third Fridays of each month are usually Working-Bee days. There is always a morning tea – bring a small plate to share.
Sometimes, if things go to plan, these days are followed by a barbecue lunch.
This is also the best day to come along to speak to our members, ask any questions and to see the gardens in action and learn about any upcoming projects.
We also sell honey on these days – $8 a jar – the money raised goes towards improvements.
Members can tend to their gardens at a time that is convenient for them.
Dedicated members who actively work towards the ongoing improvement of our Gardens.
We believe that our “site”, together with the other features of the BLACKBUTT RESERVE, are tourist attractions. What was at first established by NCC in 1999, has been maintained and improved by the founding and new-member gardeners. As the caretakers of this beautiful place we are striving to ensure that it survives and continues to meet the needs of the community.
Members are asked to help out with:
- Tending to the Worm Farms… producing “worm juice”
- Keeping pathways on both sides of a plot free of weeds, leaf matter
- Composting … soil enrichment process
- Chooks – for eggs and compost material
- Growing herbs
- Weeding and watering of the community plots
- Caring for individual family plots
- Regular housekeeping tasks especially on Working-Bee days
- Caring for tools – sharpening, oiling, etc
- Mowing of the lawn
Such a lovely group of people, friendly and welcoming and Gwen is a wealth of knowledge. I really enjoy my time when I’m pottering in the garden beds and enjoying some lively conversation over a cuppa.
I come here after work to wind down after a stressful day to feed the chooks and do some weeding. It’s such a lovely hidden gem… I’m so glad to have discovered it. Everyone is so helpful.
IS THERE SOMETHING YOU’D LIKE TO KNOW ABOUT MARCH STREET COMMUNITY GARDENS? YOU MIGHT FIND THE ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTIONS HERE…
What kind of activities are there that we can get involved with at the Gardens?
Excursions, working-bees, education sessions, learning from other members, barbecues. The NEWS + GALLERY page has information about what’s on and current Newsletter.
Do you have bee hives
at the Gardens?
Sadly the bee hives are no longer on the site. One of our member is a very experienced apiarist and can answer a lot of your questions.
When are the Gardens open?
Any members of the public are invited to come to the MSC Gardens to see our setup any day and time of the week. We are open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.
Do you have a limit on how many members can join?
We encourage new members to join us. Fresh ideas, new faces and new members are always welcome!
New members enable our gardens and minds to thrive.
Do I need to know anything about gardening to join?
No, you can be any age, and experience isn’t necessary… just come along with a passion or interest in learning about gardening. Our members have a wealth of information and are always happy to answer any questions and can steer you in the right direction if you get stuck.
For example what time of year to plant certain vegetables, how to prepare the soil, pests and weeds… there’s always something new to learn.
Does it cost anything to join?
There is no fee to join the MSC Gardens. If you decide to purchase a plot, there is a small levy payable per annum.
There are currently spare plots available. Come on a Friday morning at 9.30am and speak to our Treasurer or Gardens Co-ordinator.