There’s a small crowd milling around on the block opposite the Old Fitzroy pub in Woolloomooloo. But although it’s one of the few unrenovated, unreconstructed parts of East Sydney, this is strictly wholesome.
Wholesome in the true sense of the word: bound by Dowling Street, Reid Avenue and McElhone Street, it’s a community garden, and it’s been interesting to watch it develop over the last couple of years.
The garden is run by local neighbours and friends through the voluntary Greening Woolloomooloo. They’re good at applying for grants, and since first pitching the project in late 2004, have developed the garden into a moderately stable thing.
You can imagine a face off between the gardeners and the usual denizens of a spot like this, tucked between inner city apartments, highway overpasses, and dark lanes. But graffiti is a big part of this garden.
The garden is divided into roughly four quadrants: upper and lower food production terraces, an art area and nursery, and a lower decorative terrace. It uses water harvesting at various points, and a water storage tank.
It’s a garden that makes me want to walk through the area just to see how it’s growing.