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09 October 2019
By DEAN LAWSON
The role of environmental sustainability in gardening will be a core theme during Horsham’s annual garden festival.
Activities and presentations involving sustainability will be an integral part of the 32nd Horsham Spring Garden Festival at Horsham Botanic Gardens on Saturday and Sunday.
The festival also traditionally trumpets a district change in season from winter to spring and this year is no exception.
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Festival publicity officer and keen gardener Sonia Matthews said environmental sustainability was an appropriate theme for this year’s event.
“Gardening has in many ways always been about backyard sustainability and working with the environment. But the full benefits of exploring what this can offer can be something we overlook,” she said.
“So this year there is a special emphasis on how being sustainable leads to better and much more healthy and vibrant gardens.
“Gardens are all about life, piece of mind, physical and mental health, and this all works ‘hand in gardening glove’ with environmental health and sustainability.
“And, of course, the onset of spring and warmer weather is a great encouragement for us to all get out and work our green thumbs.”
The festival is open from 9am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday and has a $6 charge to help organisers cover costs.
Backing up the sustainability theme will be presentations by guests including award-winning television presenter Costa Georgiadis and Gippsland author Tammy Logan as well as ‘Captain Compost’ from Grampians Central West Waste and Resource Recovery Group.
“When we talk about sustainability, it’s more than simply about growing plants,” Ms Matthews said.
“It’s looking at nature and how we can use what have at our disposal to encourage everything to work in harmony. This might include mulching, composting, exploring water-supply options, avoiding chemicals and understanding the roles beneficial insects can play in a garden. It might also consider the best tools to use or outdoor settings and furniture to use to exploit what you create.
“Ideas involving this will all be at this year’s festival.”
Ms Matthews said Georgiadis would have his presentation on Saturday and Logan, described as an ‘eco warrior’, would be a highlight of Sunday activities.
“We will also have a variety of local guest presenters both days to take patrons through a variety of topics,” she said.
The festival’s popular spinning wheel will be in operation, providing free plants to winners, and various traders will be in the gardens with everything from garden art, machinery and furniture to craft and produce.
Plants will be for sale in abundance, Horsham Urban Landcare will be back to present its children’s program and there will be a broad variety of food and drinks available.
“There will also be plenty of shade and even some rugs available for people to sit on the grass,” Ms Matthews said.
“The truth is this festival is one of the great casual meet-and-greet opportunities for people in the region.
“It unfolds in a highly relaxed atmosphere where visitors meander through the exhibits and displays at their own pace.
“Wimmera Growers of Australian Native Plants are back this year, which is wonderful and of course there will be plenty of opportunities to buy bargain plants from all sorts of retailers and specialists.”
The festival will again have a major raffle with a wheelbarrow full of gardening products up for grabs.
The entire October 9, 2019 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!