The Alice Springs Community Garden (the Garden) is located at Frances Smith Memorial Park, Burke Street, Old Eastside, Alice Springs. The garden is a thriving hub of activity with community gardening, workshops, events and working bees.
It provides many communal resources including a solar pergola with small stage area, a Bodhi tree meditation spot, a wood-fired pizza oven, a mandala garden and other community plots, fruit trees, a bushfoods and medicine garden, ponds and a impressive worm farm, composting and propagation complex.
In addition there are around 44 well-sized and automatically irrigated individual private plots for lease.
The Garden nestles under a small hill registered as an Aboriginal sacred site.There are community rest rooms nearby in Frances Smith Park along with children's play areas. There is wheelchair access to some of the communal areas and to two raised garden beds.
Many individuals in the Alice Springs Community, including past and present Committee Members, and the Arid lands Environment Centre (ALEC) have been has been supporting the establishment of a community garden in Alice Springs since 2007. Work started on the Garden in 2011.
The Garden also has links with other community and government organisations in Alice Springs. A number of local business and organisations have sponsored the Garden's ongoing growth and development. The Garden is run by a volunteer committee and is auspiced by the ALEC and supported by ALEC staff.
Regular working bees are held most Sundays from 8am in summer and 9am in cooler months. Volunteers are always welcome, just remember to bring a hat, closed shoes, protective clothing and a water bottle.
Regular community events and open days are held at the ASCG, and provide an opportunity to learn more about best arid zone gardening practices.
The ASCG is dedicated to sharing best practice food gardening in Alice Springs, and businesses, schools, community organisations and individuals are encouraged to become members of ALEC and the Garden to access quality information, connect with each other and share resources.
Become a Friend of the Garden!
The Garden is a project of the Arid Lands Environment Centre, a community based environment centre in Alice Springs. For more than 38 years ALEC has been a strong voice for the conservation and responsible management of the arid lands, and has been developing and delivering environmental sustainability initiatives to the region.
To become a Friend of the Garden you must first join ALEC ($30/year for an individual/$50 for a family). ALEC members support the vision of 'healthy futures for arid lands and people', receive the fortnightly E-newsletter the Thorny News and are encouraged to become active participants in environmental and sustainability initiatives.
People who express an interest in the Garden when they pay their ALEC membership automatically become Friends of the Garden.
Friends of the Garden receive
- monthly E-newsletter
- access to communal plots and produce at the Garden
- eligibility to apply for a private garden plot
- access to local gardening advice and expertise
- access to community food projects including Food for Alice.
- access to Garden working bees and social events
Friends of the Garden can become a plot holder, join the Garden committee or regularly attending working bees. All new Friends of the Garden should receive an orientation from a committee member and the code to the combination locks on the front gate and garden shed. Join ALEC here.
Plot holders will be given an orientation by the Plot Holder Rep or the Convenor. On commitment, they need to complete a signing on agreement that outlines the Garden rules and expectations. Plot holders pay a monthly fee ($20) and an initial setup fee ($50). Express an interest in becoming a plot holder here.
The Garden depends on its PODs which are informal groups that focus on specific areas and tasks within the Garden. Anyone who is a Friend of the Garden can join one or more PODs. New POD members are more than welcome, email firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest.