Updated: Feb 28, 2019
The saying “from little things, big things grow” has never been more appropriate than when applied to the Blue Mountains Edible Garden Trail. Launched in 2018, to inspire, connect and educate backyard growers across the Blue Mountains, the Trail has since set seed throughout the country and beyond.
“It was always my intention for the idea to spread,” says Edible Garden Trail founder, Susanne Rix. “I’m thrilled that other communities are starting their own Edible Garden Trails and I’m hoping this will become a global phenomenon with people all over the world opening their gardens to the public to share intelligent, sustainable food production techniques.”
It seems that’s just what is happening with Edible Garden Trails sprouting up in Apollo Bay and Torquay in Victoria, on the New South Wales south coast, and even in the US where Ms Rix has been invited as a consultant.
Apollo Bay held their first Edible Garden Trail in November last year with organiser Jodie Lawson praising her community for their enthusiasm for the event. “The Trail touched a genuine need for connection and knowledge sharing around growing food,” Ms Lawson says. “So many people don't know where to begin with gardening. Events like this break down those barriers, give people permission to get started and the support to succeed.”
The second annual Blue Mountains Edible Garden Trail takes place over the weekend of Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd March, from 10am – 4pm.
This year’s Trail re-unites many growers from the inaugural event and also welcomes an array of exciting new and diverse gardens including Joe Tabone’s Springwood patch. Joe, who is part of the Urban Growers Co-op which sells backyard produce at Lawson’s Magpie Markets, turned his suburban backyard, front yard and verge into an edible oasis using bio-intensive methods and permaculture principles. A small biogas system in the chook pen even supplies the family with cooking gas!
“I joined the Edible Garden Trail this year because I want to encourage others to grow more food in their own backyards and on the verges,” explains Mr Tabone. “Growing food is a powerful and subversive act (to quote Bill Mollison). It makes us more resourceful, resilient and skilled, but most of all it makes us more generous and brings communities together,” he says.
“The Edible Garden Trail is a fabulous initiative that may well just inspire change in our the local landscape. Less manicured lawns and more avenues of abundance!”
The Edible Garden Trail is sponsored by Blue Mountains Food Co-op, Scenic World Shared (through the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal), Bendigo Bank Katoomba and Blue Mountains City Council. Last year’s not-for-profit community event raised $2,000 from ticket sales that was donated to local school and community gardens to purchase garden equipment.
For more information and to purchase tickets online go to ediblegardentrail.com/shop. Tickets may also be purchased from Blue Mountains Food Co-op, Gleebooks Blackheath, Megalong Books Leura, FED Wentworth Falls, Lyttleton Stores Lawson, 20 Mile Hollow Café Woodford and Glenbrook Village Nursery.