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Cultivating a love of gardens

Christchurch National

9 March 2021

Citycare Property teams maintain gardens in the communities where we live and work, all over New Zealand, for everyone to enjoy.

“This week we’re proud to sponsor an inclusive, interactive exhibition garden to showcase the joy of community gardening at Grow Ōtautahi – Christchurch’s garden festival,” Citycare Property General Manager Craig Taylor says.

The Canterbury Community Gardens’ Association (CCGA) has invited all the region’s 35 community gardens to take part in creating an interactive exhibition where visitors will see a wide range of vegetables, fruit trees, pollinating plants, beehives, birdbaths and living furniture.

A large woven lady will welcome visitors to the garden and community gardens advocates will be on-hand to talk about everything and anything green-fingered.

The festival is free to the public and will run from Friday to Sunday at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens.

“Grow Ōtautahi is a homegrown festival that draws on our region’s love of gardens, creativity, innovation and design,” Festival Director Sandi MacRae says.

“We are absolutely focused on our local community so it’s really exciting to have all the region’s community gardens represented in one very special exhibition.

“What better way to celebrate the concept of the community coming together to work in a garden and create a special place that everyone can enjoy,” Sandi says.

CCGA Chair Cathy Allden says community gardening is all about inclusiveness.

“A community garden is a place you can wander into and find a place that makes you feel at home,” Cathy says.

“You might want to pick up a spade and get digging, or perhaps you’d rather just sit and enjoy the surroundings. Whatever your pleasure, community gardens are there for everyone,” she says.

The Citycare Property event stand is also collaborating with community groups Life in Vacant Spaces (LiVS) and The Green Lab by providing them with the opportunity to discuss all things urban gardening at the festival and promote their work revitalising Christchurch in the decade since the devastating earthquakes.

Citycare is a hero partner of the Student Volunteer Army and some volunteers will be giving us a hand at the festival, too. This partnership is an enduring one begun a decade ago when the SVA first helped Christchurch residents.

“Our community activities and the use of technology in our open spaces workplaces will be two interesting topics for presentations throughout the festival,” Craig says.