The Townsville campus supports a thriving community garden at the Rotary International College site. The Sunshine Edible Garden site has been used for food production by Rotary residents for over 20 years, however in recent years it had become untended and filled with weeds. In 2013 funding was received from the JCU Action for Sustainability grants to renew and upgrade the garden using raised wicking beds and it has been highly productive ever since.
The garden was designed and constructed by local permaculture expert Brett Pritchard and is designed to be low maintenance, highly efficient and productive, while creating an inviting space where the community can learn about food production in an urban, dry tropical environment. The wicking beds provide a reservoir of water for the plants and are highly water efficient, while requiring watering only once per week.
The garden is fertilised using liquid bio-fertiliser produced from the Uni Halls Bio-Regen system, which takes food waste and turns it into bio-fertiliser through a fermentation process. The bio-fertiliser also contains active microbes that work in the soil to sequester carbon and produce water as a by-product, providing the perfect compliment to the wicking bed system.
Community members are welcome to visit the garden provided they follow a few simple rules:
For more information on the garden or to get involved please contact TropEco.