9 September 2022

Series of SAGE garden workshops offer tips for Moruya's budding veggie growers

| Katrina Condie
Start the conversation

New SAGE executive committee members Carmen Bellis, Sandra Makdessi, Peter Heyward, Susan Heyward, Cath Reilly, Mark Barraclough, Jan Maitland, Stuart Whitelaw and Eliza Cannon (front) are springing into new projects. Photo: SAGE.

The SAGE community group will spring into the new season with a series of backyard veggie growing workshops, perfect for beginners or those looking to improve their existing patch.

Hosted by experienced green thumb Alison Walsh, the four workshops will cover everything Eurobodalla residents need to know about creating a thriving, sustainable vegetable garden, from planning and planting to problem solving. There will also be tours of other established gardens for spring inspiration.

The first ‘Planning’ workshop will be held on Friday 9 September at the SAGE Garden in Moruya.

The ‘Planting’ workshop will be held in Alison’s garden on Friday 30 September and an inspiring backyard garden tour will be held on Saturday 26 November.

The workshop series will finish up with a ‘Problem Solving’ workshop at the SAGE garden in February.

READ ALSO Young EcoCrews step up to secure Eurobodalla’s food supply

After a challenging few years SAGE is looking forward with optimism on its mission to grow the local food economy.

At its annual general meeting on Sunday 21 August, SAGE welcomed an all-new committee, led by Cath Reilly as president, Peter Heyward as vice president, Jan Maitland as treasurer and Susan Heyward as secretary.

Ms Reilly has been a SAGE volunteer for the past three years and said she was looking forward to building on the previous committee’s good work.

“Food security is really important to all of us, and SAGE is a wonderful grassroots organisation to be a part of,” she said.

“We’ve all seen first-hand how vulnerable Australia’s food supply chain can be with the recent impacts of climate change, including floods and bushfires, and the pandemic.

“This has reinforced the need for a sustainable and resilient local food economy – food grown by local growers, provided to local people, at a fair price. And that’s what SAGE is setting out to do.”

Mr Barraclough, who will stay on the committee, was praised for his dedication to the role over the past five years and for helping to bring the organisation’s vision to life.

He said a significant focus of the group was its large-scale market garden and training facility, Stepping Stone Farm, which is now in a position to hit its financial targets and build on the education component of the program – growing more growers.

“This year marks the 13th year since the incorporation of SAGE and together we have made real progress on our core vision to be part of a thriving, resilient and secure food community,” he said.

“The last few years have been challenging but looking ahead, there is an air of optimism and opportunity to grasp and to continue to make a difference.”

READ ALSO Popular portable dining pods help punters enjoy Batemans waterfront

Best known for the Tuesday SAGE Farmers’ Market, the group creates access to locally-grown food through a range of volunteer-run initiatives such as workshops, leasing commercial garden beds and running Stepping Stone Farm.

Over the past 12 months, SAGE has launched a new website with e-market and membership software. The group has also achieved charitable status and attracted two grants.

The Farmers Market has continued to provide the community with local fresh food every Tuesday despite challenging growing conditions, and SAGE’s community food volunteers have produced and supplied food to local refuges and charities.

Sage will host a fundraising spring equinox community celebration on Sunday 18 September with live music and pizza in the SAGE garden.

For more information on SAGE, including the upcoming workshops and how to become involved with the organisation visit https://www.sageproject.org.au/.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Do you like to know what’s happening around your region? Every day the About Regional team packages up our most popular stories and sends them straight to your inbox for free. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.