Galston Garden Club

Brrr…what a cold June night it was for our meeting last month, members came rugged up in beanies, coats & scarves, the cold was not going to keep them away. However in no time at all, the warmth of the hall & warm friendly chatter soon had everyone warmed up. The hall again looked lovely with masses of camellias & salvias now in bloom and brought along for Show & Tell.

Three years ago the Galston Garden Club donated an oak tree to the newly formed Southern Highlands Botanic Gardens. We received a photo this month showing how well it was doing but best of all it has produced an acorn! So it must be feeling right at home & it was very exciting to members to see their contribution to the Botanic Garden doing so well.

Our Guest Speaker this month was Stellina Trestrail , the Agriculture and Primary Industries Coordinator from Northholm Grammar School who spoke on Aquaponics. An enthusiastic speaker she told us how she came about incorporating Aquaponics into the school agricultural syllabus. Aquaponics is very similar to hydroponics; however the nutrients are supplied by fish. Basically, using two large containers with fish in the bottom one & plants in the top one, the water with the fish waste is pumped up, filtrated & flows through the bed above filtered again to return to the fish tank as fresh water. The plants above are planted in a growing medium of any one of the following, smooth road gravel, scoria or clay pellets. The fish/plant relationship works very well, the water is totally recycled best of all you only need 10% of the water that you would need to grow vegetables in the garden. Aquaponics is great for the home gardener or balcony gardener, very simple to set up, an easy system to run, you don’t need a lot of skill as well as being excellent for growing herbs & leafy vegetables like kale, lettuce as well as many others. There is a large amount of information on the internet mainly from Murray Hallam from Queensland an expert in the field & only too happy to spread the benefits of Aquaponics. The other benefit of aquaponics is by using fish breeds such as Silver Perch or trout you can breed them to eating size or you can just go decorative & use Koi. Stellina is more than happy to pass on the knowledge she has gained to others also interested in this amazing way of gardening.

We have 9 gardens that we will be presenting for our Open Gardens Weekend in October. So save the date 19th, 20th & 21st October. Come along & have a lovely time which helps us raise much needed funds for the many charities we support. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor or would like to donate to our mega raffle, please contact Open Gardens Convenor Bill Fleming on 96532394 or email: [email protected]

We hope to see you at our next club meeting & to join us for another happy gardening year. Garden Club meets on the 2nd Weds of the month at the Galston Community Centre 37 Arcadia Rd., Galston 8.00pm, new members are warmly welcomed. For other information, visit our website: www.galstongardenclub.com.au