August/September News

Dear Kariong Eco Garden members and friends,

We hope you are all keeping well in these strange times.  Remember if you have cabin fever the garden and other places in nature are relatively safe places to be!

It is easy to maintain safe physical distance at the eco garden.  You are welcome to wear a mask if you choose to.  You can BYO gloves or use ours and the hand sanitiser provided. We have eucalyptus spray to spray tool handles as needed.  It is nice to keep in contact with people and nature, and good for our mental health.  Pop in on a Monday morning or other times as detailed below.  If you would like to donate eligible Return & Earn bottles and cans we can cash them in to raise funds for the garden! KEG annual membership is $5 or 50 refundable bottles also accepted.

Breaking News: We are holding an online ECO TRIVIA NIGHT on Monday 31/8/20, 7-8pm – the last night before spring!
This in keeping with our annual August fundraiser.  It will be free to join but if you are able to make a donation, tickets are usually $10 and we raise more with a silent auction. We are with Bendigo Bank and our BSB is 633-000; Account No: 154480586
You will have to BYO pizza on the night this time – or eat what you like.  Join on your own or with family or friends from your home. Have paper and pencil handy.

Our lovely ECO Trivia host is Alex Lynch, Sustainability Educator, Total Environment Centre.

Register through Eventbrite and you will receive the Meeting ID and password via email:

Here is some info about Zoom if you haven’t done it before:

Any questions feel free to call or message Lisa on 0429 431 889.

We will open the Zoom Room at 6.45pm. 

Our Repair Cafe, held every 3rd Sunday of the month, 10am – 1pm, is gaining some momentum and we welcome more volunteers and people with things to fix! Contact Wanda 0414 832 162.  We hold our Boomerang Bag working bee at the same as the Repair Cafe, also in the Kariong Progress Hall. More helpers needed. We have fabric and sewing machines if you would like to sew a mask for yourself or family members. Bring and share best patterns and BYO elastic.

There are also some lovely groups using the garden – every 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month from 1pm the Troubadours come and make music.  All welcome.  $3 donation.  Regular storytelling is also planned on some Sundays by Tangerine Elephant Storytelling – contact Gab at

If you are part of a group with a newsletter please feel free to share the following far and wide:

Kariong Eco Garden is the oldest community garden on the Central Coast. It has been sustained by volunteers thinking globally and acting locally since 2005. The garden is a place where people can learn about caring for the earth, providing habitat for wildlife, harvesting rainwater, generating renewable energy, recycling organic matter and growing food, naturally. Our garden includes an herb spiral, veges, bush tucker, fruit trees, no dig gardens, a wicking bed and ponds. We also have a mosaic snake path, murals about permaculture, Tiddalik the greedy frog, the elements of the earth, and life cycles of birds, snakes, butterflies and frogs!
Regular volunteer mornings are back on Mondays 10am-12noon. Children are very welcome – please bring a grown up. We have children’s tools, watering cans and gloves.
School visits welcome by appointment, eg teachers and environmental leaders seeking hands-on composting and worm farming advice.  We also have a monthly working bee in the garden every 2nd Saturday of the month: 10am – 1pm during Spring and Summer, 11am – 2pm Autumn and Winter. Bring some food to share for lunch if you are able.  We are registered with Centrelink as a Volunteer Work Provider. Extra volunteer days can happen if we get 3 volunteers who want to come on a different day.

Some schools require senior students and leadership applicants to do community service.
We offer the opportunity for students (aged 14-17years) to give their time and energy as community volunteers at our monthly 2nd Saturday working bee.
Parent consent required. Regular Eco Garden volunteers all have current ‘Working with Children Checks’ and a First Aid certificate.

The next three working bees:
Saturday 12 September 2020, 10am-1pm
Saturday 10 October 2020, 10am-1pm
And Saturday 14 November 2020, 10am – 1pm
Gloves, tools and guidance provided as well as refreshments.
Other volunteer opportunities are on every 3rd Sunday at the Boomerang Bag working bees in Kariong Progress Hall, 10am – 1pm.
Next Repair Cafe and Boomerang Bag dates:
Sundays 20/9/20, 18/10/20 and 15/11/20.
Where are we?
Kariong Eco Garden, Dandaloo Street (Turn off Woy Woy Road at roundabout, Kariong (behind community hall).
For more information:
Lisa Wriley 0429431889

New Worm Tub for Sale $250
Made by Peninsula Mens Shed

See info in our Resource page re setting it up – we can help with this. Call Lisa to discuss or pop in and have a look.

June 2020 news

Troubadours are having Folk music session in the Eco Garden on 1st & 3rd Sundays from 1pm during winter. $3 donation (which they donate to KEG)

Volunteer mornings – on Tuesdays for the time being – 10am – 12noon.  (current limits are 10 people which is not usually an issue – unless we have an event or guest speaker)

Repair Cafe – 3rd Sundays, 10am – 1pm – so Sunday 21/6/20 – in Kariong Progress Hall. See details in What’s On. NSW Health guidelines will be followed re limits on number of people in hall but we will make it work. Volunteers helping to repair your items (not electronics yet but all sorts of things – sewing, jewellery, small household goods, tool maintenance and bicycles.

Boomerang Bags – 3rd Sundays, 10am – 1pm – so Sunday 21/6/20 – in Kariong Progress Hall. Volunteers sewing cloth bags to reduce plastic bag use & pollution.

Weekend working bees in Winter: 2nd Saturdays, 11am – 2pm – so Saturday 13/6/20, soup provided for lunch. Bring something to share if you are able.

Sunday 28/6/20 marks the 15 year Anniversary of our “Conception” ie the day we were created by a Motion of Gosford Council. Shared lunch 12-2pm (subject to NSW Health limits in outdoor spaces)

April-May Retrospective

During the COVID-19 restrictions on movement and gathering, things have been quiet at the Eco Garden.  We have stopped our regular Monday morning volunteer mornings and only visited occasionally to feed the worms and give a little water when needed. The garden has been happily going wild.

Just before the ‘lock-down’ we had started dismantling the compost bays, made of recycled pallettes, along the back fence.  We moved them to their new location next to the water tank outside the Dandaloo St end gate.

In several two-person efforts, Norm Harris and myself worked on the new compost bay, using the pallette timber, corrugated iron and keeping a safe distance (we considered the task our exercise – allowed by two people outside).  Norm finished off the fronts of the compost bays, re-using the old gates.  We owe him a great thanks.

On 4th May we officially announced the Compost Bays open as a timely way to mark the beginning of International Composting Awareness Week.

We have also had regular visits from some locals who have been busy planting seedlings – thanks Nate! And whipper snipping, weeding and fixing our tap – Thanks Jason.  Other weeders I do not know by name but it has been lovely to pop in and see evidence of helpful visitors – and wonderfully, no damage worth mentioning.

March 2020 News

Well we certainly got all the rainwater we needed in
our water tanks – and some!

Regular Volunteers, Mondays Only: 10am – 12noon
Jobs this month include: WEEDING, fence and gate repairs, compost bay relocation …
and Permablitz on Sunday 15/3/20, 10am – 2pm,
followed by regular Troubadour’s Folk Music 2-4pm.

Bring your broken items or tools for sharpening: new REPAIR CAFÉ & ongoing BOOMERANG BAGS
3rd Sunday monthly: 15/3/20, 10am – 1pm. Volunteers sewing cloth bags and helping repair broken things!

Clean Up Australia Day Sunday 1/3/20 9–12noon followed by thankyou lunch supplied by Kariong Progress Association.

Girrakool Blues Festival 6-8 March 2020
Thankyou to our volunteers during the event who collected many bottles and cans for fundraising.

Please call the POLICE ASSISTANCE LINE: 131 444 if you see anti-social behaviour.

Find us behind Kariong Progress Hall, in Dandaloo St.

February 2020 News

Mondays and Fridays 10am – 12noon
Jobs this month include: labyrinth path – weeding
and re-planting and planning changes in the pond
and fairy garden area. Hopefully watching more
rainwater go into our water tanks!

each month: 16/2/20, 10am – 1pm.
sewing cloth bags for the box at Kariong Foodworks
and helping repair broken things!

We have always wanted to have our garden open for visitors and expect people to respect the space. Sadly we have had more vandalism over Christmas and had to resort to closing the garden outside of volunteer hours. The garden is open on Monday mornings 10am – 12noon – and can be accessed via the back gates if you need to find your tennis balls.

POLICE ASSISTANCE LINE: 131 444 if you see anti-
social behaviour.
Find us behind the Kariong Progress Hall, in Dandaloo

January 2020 News

Mondays 10am – 12noon
Jobs this month include: labyrinth path – weeding
and re-planting and planning changes in the pond
and fairy garden area. Hopefully watching more
rainwater go into our water tanks!

BOOMERANG BAGS & new REPAIR CAFE – 3rd Sunday each month: 16/2/20, 10am – 1pm. Volunteers sewing cloth bags for the box at Kariong Foodworks and helping repair broken things!

Boomerang bags hanging up

We have always wanted to have our garden open for
visitors and expect people to respect the space.
Sadly we have had more vandalism over Christmas
and had to resort to closing the garden.
The garden is open on Monday and Friday mornings
10am – 12noon – and can be accessed via the back
gates if you need to find your tennis balls.

POLICE ASSISTANCE LINE: 131 444 if you see anti-
social behaviour.
Find us behind the Kariong Progress Hall, in Dandaloo
St. Find out more on our Facebook page or website:

November/December 2019 News

Happy Herb Spiral day!

Big thanks to Kerrie Anderson, local Permaculture teacher, who guided the workshop participants through the theory and practice of building a Herb Spiral. Thanks to Tania from Woy Woy Community Garden who found free sandstone rocks on Gumtree and Kerrie helped us transport them to the garden – with help from Libby, Ben and Elia loading them up. The Herb Spiral grew rock by rock, bucket loads of compost and soil were added and finally a selection of herbs – each one place in the appropriate place – taking into consideration the best height (drier at the top, moister below) and whether on north side (more sun) or south side (less sun).Come and see it over summer – bring a watering can if you are able to give it a drink (there are taps on nearby buildings- hall and Arts Barn). Regular Volunteer days will recommence on Friday 10/1/20, 10am-12noon and continue on Monday’s and Friday’s 10-12noon.

Wonderful Wicking Bed 

Local Resource Queen Robyn Crosland ran us through the wicking bed design principles and showed us a demonstration version with rescued resources before we got busy making our very own wicking bed.
It was a wonderful team effort – first emptying the old “no dig” garden into buckets and wheelbarrows then re-building it as a Wicking bed -where the water is stored underneath the soil and ‘wicks’ its way up to the plants above. An overflow pipe was installed on the low side of the garden (to feed the citrus trees) and an inlet pipe sticks up like a chimney for adding water.

We already have corn sprouting in the wicking bed and the rhubarb plants that were transplanted from the old bed are looking very happy in their new water wise garden bed. We hope at least this garden bed is relatively drought proof as our 1000 Litre water tank is empty and our two steel tanks are very low.

Ideas so far for 2020:

monthly Repair Cafe and Boomerang Bags in Kariong Hall every 3rd Sunday of the month 10am-1pm (February to November)

Girrakool Blues Festival (volunteers needed to help collect redeemable bottles and cans)

Clean Up Australia Day (1st Sunday in March)

Muddy Mondays 

Tree planting day at Pioneer Dairy (late March)

Live Well festival in April

Love the Labyrinth workshop 

Frog and Fairy Garden Working bee

A visit from the ECO FAERIES  from WA in June

For the Love of Birds, Bees and Butterflies … workshops 

Another Solar Power day?

What would you like to see happen at Kariong Eco Garden in 2020 and beyond?
We welcome more active volunteers in the garden, the office and joining our management committee that meets most months.

We would like to wish everyone a safe and blessed Christmas and hope to see you in the garden in 2020.

October 2019 News

Last month’s Community Garden Week events were a great success.  Graham King taught us about soil and Graeme Ingall taught us about native plants.
We finished our new sand and paving floor.  Big thanks to Better Health Practices for their donation of pavers and Disability Options for lending a hand!

Last Month we had the great pleasure of hosting Central Coast Sports College’s Pre Kindy Club. The children and families had a wonderful time, despite the cold, rainy weather. Here is a short highlights video they put together.

Sadly on Monday 30/9/19 volunteers arrived to find our shed roller door kicked in, a still smouldering campfire, rubbish and graffiti on our beautiful new bench.

We are temporarily closing the garden – so there will be no volunteer mornings on Friday 4/10/19 or Monday 7/10/19, the long weekend.  If you are passing and are able to have a quick check in for any more damage please report problems to Lisa 0429 431 889 or Tony 0425 370 948 and we will report it to the Police Assistance Line 131 444.

Mondays and Fridays 10am – 12noon (from 11/10/19)
Jobs this month include: labelling our plants, a trip to metal recyclers (seeking volunteer truck or trailer), planning a fairy garden! Harvesting native raspberries – yum 🙂

Note a change for BOOMERANG BAGS this month – Sunday 20/10/19, 9.30am – 11.30am screen-printing pockets and demonstrating bag-making at the Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre Community Day. Donnison St, Gosford.

School Holiday ECO Kids 
Friday 11/10/19, 10am – 12noon Fabulous Fairies – calling all fairies and their friends to join us in the garden.
The garden needs some fairy magic! BYO fairy wings*, fairy stories, treasures to decorate the new fairy garden.
(*Lisa remembers her mum making some fairy wings with wire coat hangers and stockings..)

Share fairy stories, songs, activities. Bring fruit for morning tea. (There might be some fairy bread too!)
Gold coin donation. Children must bring a grown up. Bees, butterflies and dragonflies welcome too.

Date for your Diary:

  • Repair Cafe and Boomerang Bags this Sunday 17/11/19 in Kariong Hall, Dandaloo Street Kariong (next to the Eco Garden) 10am – 1pm.  Bring things to get fixed and contact us if you would like to be a volunteer repairer. Our hope is to hold a regular Repair Cafe on the 3rd Sunday each month – from February 2020.
    For more info please contact Wanda:
  • Monday 18/11/19  – planning our herb spiral construction – with old bricks and mud!!
  • Kariong Eco Garden and Hall car park closed on Thursday 21/11 & Friday 22/11 while the 2GO giant concrete tower is removed for good! Happy days.
  • Kariong Eco Garden Management Committee AGM – Friday 22/11/19 at 10am at Waterfall Cafe, Mt Penang Gardens – all positions declared vacant – and we will share dreams and hopes for 2020.
  • Muddy Monday 25/11/19 to construct the Herb Spiral with old bricks and mud – come and get muddy with us. Buckets of extra clay, sand, straw all welcome!

Friday 29/11/19 – 10am – 12noon Kerrie Anderson will guide us in making a herb spiral. Bring a herb to donate 🙂

Kerrie has a longstanding interest in sustainable living.  With a background in health, her focus is now on living in tune with nature, eating a healthy organic diet and growing her own produce.  Kerrie is a Permaculture and Meditation Teacher and is passionate about influencing others to make informed choices for a more sustainable future.  She is a member of Permaculture Central Coast, Permaculture Australia, a member of FIG (Food Integrity Group) Food Co-op, and a founding member of Matcham Holgate Produce Share.

Kerrie believes with good physical, emotional and spiritual health, and the support of quality information and skills, people can be empowered to live their life to the fullest, with consciousness and accountability.

Kerrie currently works as a TAFE Teacher and as a Facilitator in the community, delivering courses on permaculture and sustainability.  She is a skilled training facilitator, community connector and is very experienced in coaching individuals and groups in practical permaculture strategies.

Friday 6/12/19, 10am – 2pm Wicking Bed workshop with Robyn Crosland.  (Apologies from Peter Rutherford) Design principles explained and hands on making. BYO safety glasses (needed for about 10mins when we are handling perlite), We will provide dust masks, gloves and tools. $5 donation or free for financial members ($5 membership)

Our Vision
To be an inspiring example of how to live with nature and promote sustainable living.

Our Mission
To provide a point of reference for the local community on sustainable living, environmental awareness and the employment of ecological principles by providing learning opportunities and supporting programs run by others.

September 2019 News

As part of the Community Garden Week, we will be hosting these events supported by Central Coast Council:

Monday 9th September

10am – 12noon Talk about Soil by Graeme King, local permaculture lover covering the importance of healthy soil for nutrient-dense food. Plant sale and morning tea. Gold coin donation welcome.

11am Worm farming demonstration and Composting Activities for all ages (Find out about A.D.A.M. – Aliveness, Diversity, Air and Moisture)

Friday 13th September

10am – 12 noon Talk about Growing Native Plants by Graeme Ingall from the Australian Plant Society, covering local plants, where to purchase, growing conditions and habitat provided.  Plant sale and morning tea. Gold coin donation welcome.

Sunday 22nd September

Kariong Progress Association and Kariong Eco Garden are hosting a Solar Power Info Day on Sunday 22/9/19, 10am – 2pm in the Kariong Progress Hall, 2 Dandaloo Street, Kariong.

Lunch will be catered for everyone who registers by 16/9/19 – via email to or phone 0429 431 889.

Kariong Progress Association has recently installed a 7.8 KW solar power system (with 6 KW inverter) on the roof of the community hall thanks to funding from Central Coast Council.

Tony Farina, President of Kariong Progress Association, says, “The aim of the day is to create a time and place for locals to share their knowledge about and experience with solar power, whether you already have a system and want to improve it or tell people about your experience or you are thinking of getting a solar power system and have some questions.”

Julian Bowker, Peninsula resident with a background in electronic engineering and computers will give an interactive talk on “Where does my energy money go?” showing how to monitor your electricity use. “It is really important for everyone to understand how they are using power and to know how to save money,” said Julian. Having performed audits for many local homes, he is patient when explaining what the options are.

Kariong Eco Garden President, Lisa Wriley, says “the Solar Power Info day is a must for anyone considering solar or with solar already.”

The Program:

10am Arrive and Browse Info on Display

10.10am Acknowledgement of Country

10.15am Welcome & Introductions

10.30am Launch of Kariong Progress Hall’s Solar Power Public Interface 10.40 Where does my energy money go? – Julian Bowker

11.00am Local Case Studies – Hear real experiences with solar panels, inverters, batteries, choosing a retailer, feed-in tariffs, installers, maintenance, DIY and passive solar design.

11.50am Central Coast Community Energy Assoc – Jo Muller

12noon Solar Power Panel – all speakers – have your questions ready! 12.30pm – Lunch & Electric Car Show & Tell in car park & time to browse Info displays

1.00pm Small Group Conversations – you choose from KPA/KEG – Kariong Kilowatt Counter;Community Environment Network – Climate Futures group; Central Coast Community Energy Assoc & Julian Bowker, Australian Conservation Foundation – Central Coast branch.

1.50pm Wrap Up and Thanks for coming

August 2019 News

Garden News

Steve and Elliah has made Progress on our Cycle of life sculpture. The beds have been prepared for spring planting and blueberries have been planted outside our fence!

Annual Fundraising Trivia Night

Kariong Eco Garden, established in 2005 and opened in 2007, is fundraising for its ongoing work “maintaining a living garden and providing a place of learning for sustainable and earth-friendly practices for families and other interested people in the local community”. 

We would love you to join us at our annual fundraising Trivia Night this Saturday 17/8/19 at 6pm, in Kariong Progress Hall, Dandaloo Street, Kariong.

Buy your $10/person (over 12 years of age) tickets at Kariong Neighbourhood Centre by 3pm on Friday or online here.

Our Quiz Master Jim Katrakilis has prepared some great questions to challenge us.

Chapmans Quality Fruit are donating a fresh Fruit & Vege tray for the raffle.

Colleen has donated a beautiful quilt to join other treasures on the Silent Auction table. 

There are lots of ECO giveaways donated by Council. It is a family friendly event!

Kariong Pizza have offered a special deal for our traditional pizza orders on the night:

$16 for Large size and $22 for family size

See menu here:

Working Bee

Will be on the 24th of August, 10am – 2pm. Bring a wheelbarrow and shovel 🙂 Call Lisa on 0429431889 if you can donate rectangular pavers!