Ivor Thomas (76), Horrie Annear (82), Brian Binney (78) and Ted King (76) started the community garden in the RAAFA Cambrai Village in 2012. After a couple of years of getting their hands dirty, helped by Dereck Edwards (77) and their latest recruit Les Edmunds (67), the men are proud of a thriving vegetable garden.
Mr Thomas, the garden club president, said they never let age weary them, and worked the soil to produce vegetables that their neighbours could enjoy.
‘Residents are invited to become garden members at a small fee and then any donations are welcome to enable the club to purchase any requirements,’ he said.
‘We have built compost bins, erected a garden shed, a shade house and fencing mainly from recycled material obtained from Tamala Park recycling centre which we affectionately call ‘Harrods on Marmion’.
‘We are now in the process of developing raised garden beds so we don’t have to bend down as much in our old age.
‘We are now erecting a small green house and with three worm farms in full production, our produce is improving, our garden is healthy and life is good.’
Mr Thomas said they received permission three years ago to develop the garden in an area that was full of bush and building rubble.
‘As the trees were pulled out, we commenced sifting the soil to about 1m deep ” much of the limestone had to be drilled or pick-axed, and a lot of blood, sweat and tears were shed,’ he said.
‘Now we have got a beautiful vegie patch. We make all our own manure ” everything goes into the compost bins.
‘All my spray I use is garlic and chilli, all homemade.’
The veteran said they planted mainly vegetables, like beans, garlic, spring onions and spinach, but also had a strawberry patch that residents’ grandchildren loved to visit.