2021 Roundup™

It was a strange year, as prolonged periods of lock-down and no public events to serve as mementos, messed with our collective perception of the passage of time. You may be surprised to be reminded that these things happened…

Fig Tree was reborn as Smokva Garden in collaboration with the Croatian Club.

Smokva started collecting compost from Momo wholefood cafe, kick starting a rhythm on weekly compost creation which has totaled about 40 cubic meters of compost added back into our soil from 4.5 tons of food scraps!

We have been making our own bokashi starter culture which has allowed Momo to store their food waste outside of their fridge and for households to collect their waste in a 20L bucket over the course of 3 weeks before bringing it in to the garden – no smells!

The neighboring preschool has been bringing their compost over in an army of tiny wheel barrows, which is a sight to behold.

Bridie Piaf came and wrote a wonderful article about our garden which featured on the cover of Earth Garden magazine.

We have advertised for a paid position making our compost. This is targeted to be an ideal first ever job for someone who would like to make connections in the community and build references.

We have become an authorised organisation, advertising for an over 55yo job seeker to do regular maintenance at the garden.

We have replaced all the railway sleeper garden beds with rejuvenated ground beds and eradicated all the couch grass. Reducing the mowing requirements by about 30%. Many vegetable are growing out of this space at the moment including, rainbow chard, beetroot, kale, silverbeet, beans, corn, pumpkin, zucchini, tomato, okinawa spinach, warrigal greens, rhubarb and more! These are being regularly harvested by gardeners and the public, some of which have made voluntary donations ranging from $2 to $200.

We have 7 chickens who get visits from multiple families every day, donating scraps and collecting eggs.

We have a team of 5 who water the garden on a daily basis as required.

We received a $1000 grant for building a path through the garden which is 50% complete.

We have been increasing the plant diversity at the garden, planting out more things like pineapple, blueberries, strawberries, garlic, tumeric, coffee, davidson plum, monstera deliciosa, avocado, arrowroot and grumichama. Most fruit trees have been professionally pruned, composted and mulched.

Achieving our Mission

Bring a diverse group of Newcastle’s inner west residents together in a beautiful community garden to, provide social opportunities, education and to grow and distribute healthy food on a neighbourhood scale. 👉 Mission, Objective & Philosophy.

We have brought a large group of residents together and made huge improvements to the beauty of our garden space. Each of the working bees have been great social opportunities and we have had several shared meals. Many new friendships have been made. We held one workshop in collaboration with the Seed Library and have two more scheduled. There is regular produce available at the garden including consistent leafy greens, beets, beans, eggs and seasonal fruit from the trees.

The community that comes to the garden is largely centered around the social group of the core participants however we are seeing more participation from people who pass through the space. We should prioritise signage to help the neighbourhood get involved. We should also invite other specific communities to get involved with posters and flyers.


Smokva Vs Pokemon Trading

Boy in stall selling pickles. 3 matchbox cars near by.

Sunday was another delightfully sunny winter day. Lee, Pete and Kate did a meticulous job of some much needed lawn care, pushing further back on the areas of the garden that have been over run with a mix of debris, domesticated grass and plastic bags. Freddy honed his carpentry skills as he put latches on the cabinet doors that have been flapping in the breeze. Spencer unleashed all his fury upon a decrepit railway sleeper, getting us a few steps closer to removing all the old garden beds. Alas the prior mentioned brothers were lured away from the working bee to a Pokemon trading day at Islington park and productivity rapidly declined. Andrew and Laura saved the day though, rocking up with some date and walnut cake which, along with Pete’s Treats, fueled the rest of an unquestionably successful day, in which Lee and Alistair did some pruning and mulching, Laurandrew made a new garden bed and Julia planted a Monstera Deliciousa!

Date slice on a table.

Hitting our stride

You missed a cracker of a day in the garden, there were eight people in attendance and it was a beautiful sunny winter day. Marko bulldozed through some of the remaining old garden beds, separating sleepers, soil and couch grass. Meg was the reigning compost queen and turned all the compost and made a big new batch. Both Maddie and Anton made new garden beds AND planted them out- with the help of Nick who also potted on all our tomato seedlings. Riley and Adrian disassembled the bocce fence, after it started to disassemble itself. There was a great feeling of rhythm as we have been adding garden beds, planting seedlings, planting seeds, making compost and each of these processes feed into each other every week!

Two people planting seedlings


Website Re-reactivated

It is at this point that the posts from the previous two websites relating to Fig Tree Community garden were imported in to this site- for the fun of being able to look through old photos and see how things have changed. These were all pulled from Watch the dates! See In the media for more old stories and pics from bygone eras.

Edit August 2021
I should mention that this website sat for a whole year unpublished as we had not decided on a name for the garden. Slow and steady, eh?

Historic, News, Uncategorized

Play group excursion

Figtree hosted a playgroup excursion today. What better way to inspire the next generation of green thumbs? Bring together wheelbarrows, shovels, seedlings, enthusiasm and lots of small hands.

Followed by a picnic and more play. Perfect. Thanks to all of the mums and dads that came down and joined in some fun at the garden. As is often the case, it really is the more the merrier.

Come, and grow with others.

Imported from

Historic, News, Uncategorized

Herbs in the burbs

Herbs in the Burbs’ is on Sunday 19th September from 10am – 3pm. A National WEA initiative to promote public awareness of Complementary Health It’s a Complementary and Alternative Medicine open day at Fig Tree. There will be stalls, food, entertainment, garden tours, a raffle and information about the relevent WEA Courses. The stalls will include: Naturopathy Consultations, Iridology, Remedial Massage and Organic food and beverages. Childrens activities provided. For more information contact Sue Johnston.

Imported from