History of the Garden

Randwick Community Organic Garden

RCOG made a start in 1993 as a tenant of the Randwick Community Centre run by Randwick City Council in Bundock Street. In April 2000, the Bundock Street site was lost with the redevelopment of the Department of Defense owned land. At the time we had 60 members of the community garden. Randwick City Council promised to provide RCOG with a new space to garden.

That space was found in Paine Reserve, an open park with a designated soccer pitch, children’s play area and space for recreation and dog walking. The area used by RCOG is within the northern end of the reserve and its status was an undeveloped road reserve that allowed access to the Scout Hall before rezoning for our purpose.

In recent years the Newmarket housing development of the Inglis horse saleyards has created a new road, Fennelly St on the Garden’s north side.

In Nov 2004, RCOG Inc signed its first five-year lease with Randwick City Council after the site at Paine Reserve was finalised and a development application approved.  Work began in earnest on building the Garden in July 2005 (see photo).

first steps

The community areas were the first parts of the garden to be built. This was done through a series of training workshops. These included composting, no-dig gardening, organic gardening and permaculture principles, creating a mandala/ keyhole/herb spiral garden, seed saving and propagation. Tiles were placed in the ground to delineate garden areas. This was done by the community over a period of several months. Then we built individual allotments for eligible members. There are currently thirty-two allotments and seventy members.

Over the years water tanks, the shed and sheltered collective areas have been built by members.  Grants from local and state government have assisted us in introducing solar panels, water tanks, shading, and community arts projects in the garden.

Our richness and fertility of soil has grown over the years with our healthy gardening practices. We hope that we too have grown! 

Video about the Garden

Southern Courier Article, May 2017