Working bee transforms Talbot grounds


Twenty-two members and partners of Rotary Central Melbourne made a big difference to Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre’s outdoor areas on Saturday April 14, 2018. Royal Talbot is a campus of Austin Health. Unkempt, unloved courtyard gardens were transformed during the morning.  We put in about 60 person-hours of labor, creating neat and eye-soothing vistas of paths, garden-beds and grounds.

It was the 14th year in a row that our club has pounced on the grounds to create new gardens in place of dreary lawns and concrete, and to give existing gardens a thorough spruce-up.

The weather threatened but downpours held off until the job was done. As early as 8.30am the grounds were thronged with our members wielding barrows, picks and hoes. Members unfit for heavy labor provided soups and sponge treats.

The 22 people were a great turnout. In earlier years the numbers have been swelled with helpers and visitors from Melbourne Park and Melbourne Rotary clubs .

During the working bee, one raised garden bed was readied for vegetable-growing that has been planned by staff and patients for the units’ kitchens. Austin’s coordinator Steven Wells said it was a passion of spinal unit staffer Anton to create a “plant to plate” opportunity with a “period of dreaming” from planting to harvest and cooking sessions. There would now be plenty of space for pumpkins to run, for example.

Other areas worked on would be filled with strong tough plants involving low maintenance, and sensory plants like curry, coriander and herbs, he said.

 “Thank you, it’s been fantastic to have your time and labor,” Steven said. “We really appreciate and value it.”

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