The Bhutanese Community Farm on Gateway Island has had a most successful summer season in terms of both production and marketing. The crops were abundant, problems with pests overcome and everything produced was sold almost instantly using Facebook.
Growing uncommon crops such as okra, bitter melon and snake beans has proved a wise move. Vegetables like these are rarely available outside backyard gardens, and certainly not freshly harvested and organic.
Direct marketing has significantly reduced the time, labour and paperwork needed to take veges to markets, enabling the rangers to focus more on the growing side. At the same time, community members have easy access to find out what is available and arrange delivery.
The garden beds are currently being expanded to meet the demand for fresh, organic herbs and vegetables that are not commonly available in Albury-Wodonga. A rolling planting system will ensure a constant supply of vegetables in season. The team are keen for feedback on any unusual vegetables that people would like them to grow in quantity.
It’s not all about production though!
As a social enterprise, the gardens are also set up to be a place of human growth and exchange of culture. The team welcome groups interested in the background and progress of the farm and the benefits for the Bhutanese community, as well as people who are just keen to see an organic vege garden in full swing! Ranger Tilak Chhetri has hosted a number of farm visits and enjoys the exchange of gardening tips and techniques with visitors.
To arrange a visit to the farm please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
To check current availability of produce see https://www.facebook.com/www.bhutanesegardening.com.au/