Our Food from Home community is growing each day! Food from Home Stories is a place to connect and share our knowledge, culture, and love of edible gardening with others.
Food from Home Stories: ‘Freshly picked, you just can’t buy that‘
Heike is a nutritionist with a passion for fresh, home-grown food. From growing up in Germany, Heike shares how her family has shaped her edible gardening journey, as well as some handy tips about how to preserve your produce and how to start growing your own food at home.
Food from Home Stories: Meet Elaine, a Mum, a Pakenham resident and an avid edible gardener who loves to connect, inspire and help others in her community to grow their own food. Read her story below.
How did you get started on your edible gardening journey?
I moved from Cranbourne to Pakenham 3.5 years ago now with my Husband and our Daughter. As part of the build process we had grand plans for our landscaping, which included a dedicated area for a veggie garden. Our previous home only had an old bath tub and a few pots to grow in, so it was very exciting being able to scale things up!
Once the garden started to produce a decent amount, I then became overwhelmed with the “gluts” and didn’t know what to do with it all. Whilst we ended up trading produce, seedlings & eggs between the girls at work and nothing went to waste, I wanted to be able to preserve my produce for the winter months. So, just before COVID-19 hit I learnt how to preserve using the Fowler’s Vacola method. It’s been so rewarding and was a great way to pass time during lockdown. Next on my to-do list is to learn how to ferment!
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to start their own edible garden?
I highly recommend starting small. Plan your space so you don’t have to move things around later down the track. Start with one or two beds – you can always add more later. Then start with just a handful of crops and make sure you choose things you know your family will eat – no point growing things that will go to waste. Once you’ve seen and learnt how those things grow, the following year add 2-3 more different crops, and even another bed if you’re ready to scale up.
The worst thing you can do is start with too much, then get overwhelmed by it all leaving you unmotivated to do it all again next year. Whilst it’s sometimes hard work, it should never feel like a chore.
What do you enjoy most about growing food at home?
It’s so rewarding being able to walk outside, collect a small basket of ingredients, and cook a whole meal for your family. However, the most rewarding part of all is knowing how many other people I’ve inspired to start growing their own food. I love seeing them proudly share photos of their crops, with lots of them being grown from seeds I’ve saved and gifted from my own garden.
I also love seeing what other people in our community are doing – you just never know what your neighbour might be growing in their own backyard!
What does ‘Food from Home’ mean to you?
When I think of ‘Food from Home’, I think of the universal language of food that brings us all together. The gardening community are a really amazing, generous bunch of people, and I’m so excited to discover how many other like-minded people there might be just around the corner.
To learn more, follow Elaine on Instagram: @myurbangardenjourney.
Food from Home Stories: ‘Food growing is very much a communal thing’
A community garden organiser in the Cardinia Shire and a gardener himself, Max shares his strong passion of growing food and how it helps him connect to both his family and wider community.
Food from Home Stories: ‘Gardening runs in my blood’
Cardinia Shire resident’s and aspiring homesteaders, Angelique and Josh, share how their family and childhood shaped their edible gardening journey and life-long passion for growing food.
Food from Home Stories: ‘It’s more than just a food journey’
Meet Ayush from Melbourne’s South East. A landscape designer by trade and a self-proclaimed ‘lazy gardener’ in his down time. In this video interview, Ayush welcomes us into his garden and shares his food from home story.
Want to share your Food from Home story?