On the verge of greatness
Wollongong City Council has released new verge garden guidelines as part of its Urban Greening Strategy. The guidelines have been developed to help residents create a safe and successful garden space that contributes to community spirit and greening Wollongong.
The new verge guidelines focus on the area of Council-owned land located between people’s property and the adjacent kerb. The guidelines are designed to be respectful of the needs of others and comply with Council regulations. The gardens must be well-maintained, safe, and keep the footpath accessible for everyone. There are also example verge gardens adhering to the new guidelines at Port Kembla and Coledale Community Centres for the community to model.
Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM said there are great benefits to planting a verge garden.
“These gardens create more liveable space for your home and street appeal, opening up more opportunities to connect with your neighbours. There are also the environmental advantages as verge gardens help cool the heat from the street and use less water than a lawn, not to mention attracting birds and creatures like butterflies and lizards.”
To help support the development of verge gardens across the community, Wollongong City Council is releasing 20 Connecting Neighbours Grants for verge gardens. The grants are aimed at small community groups or community members with a shared idea on building a verge garden in their community.
“These grants will kickstart the development of a variety of verge gardens across Wollongong, allowing residents to see the potential for these gardens in front of their own homes. We are hoping to see a variety of inspired gardens, from water wise to bush tucker and community veggie gardens- they will all offer a social boost to the communities they are developed in.” said Cr Bradbery.
The grants offered will each provide $250 of vouchers from the Wollongong Botanic Garden Greenplan nursery to help with the purchase of plants for the projects.
The Connecting Neighbours verge garden grants are currently open for application until 30 November, with details available on the Our Wollongong website. The verge garden guidelines can also be found on Wollongong City Council’s urban greening page and are available at the Wollongong Botanic Garden Native Plant Sales.