Carterton Mayor John Booth cuts the ribbon on the sustainable garden created by Helen Dew (at right) and friends. PHOTOS/JADE CVETKOV

ELISA VORSTER
elisa.vorster@age.co.nz

Carterton’s Helen Dew revealed her new sustainable garden at the weekend with those in the community who helped her along the way.

Dew moved to her new home in William Wong Place this year, after leaving her Costley St home of 60 years.

This meant leaving behind her extensive fruit and vegetable garden which had fed her family for decades.

But the 80-year-old Charles Rooking Carter award winner was not daunted by the concept of starting again, and began potting plants and sowing seeds in April.

The sustainable garden featuring 12 bins of compost made by Helen.

She now has successfully installed a water bore, a tunnel house, a fruit orchard and large planter boxes which are nourished by the 12 bins of compost she made.

The ceremony was attended by 40 of Dew’s closest friends and family, including some Green Dollar Market members, Resilient Carterton members and landscaper Richard Ashcroft – all of whom had helped her establish her new garden.

Together they celebrated the unveiling of a water feature, and a ribbon cutting by Carterton Mayor John Booth, who was also invited to plant a tree in the garden.

Dew said Saturday’s event was a celebration of a joint community effort to re-establish herself for sustainable living.

Part of her inspiration came from her “insatiable appetite for gardening”, and her need to know where her food comes from.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed building a garden from scratch, not only for myself but to show how a small space could produce plenty, and hopefully also to inspire others.”

She hoped her garden would also spread the message of the effects of climate change and would show others the need to change the way we source food.

“The way we feed ourselves as a species is absolutely unsustainable and we need to change it.

“If you only grow a little bit of food, it will help with the carbon footprint.”