Animals Australia: the voice for animals

Animals Australia: the voice for animals
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Sunday, December 07, 2008

The Sustainable Renter

This is my galvanised iron washtub full of oregano.
Oregano has been growing in this tub - outdoors in Melbourne - for four years.
Winter sees it die back somewhat but it comes to life in Spring.
This year it went to seed.  I cut it back to the dirt.
And it has come back beautifully to this.
This houshold of next-of-kin independent adults are renters. We have just moved house from one rented property to another. I am into growing my own herbs and vegetables and when moving into an established garden which is all roses and camellias everywhere there are difficulties.
What's the solution? Pots, pots and more pots. We were in situ in our previous property for four years and half-way through that time I decided I would dig up some ground for the stuff that was not best in pots - the broad beans, the silver beet, the cabbages, the caulies and the pumpkin. But we have had to move house in spring and leave much behind - but some has been able to come with me. All the herbs - and some vegies: leeks, schallots, choko, kipfler potatoes - because it was all in pots.
Back in spring I also revitalised my hanging baskets - renewing, replacing and adding pansies, petunias, and alyssum - which was a good idea because the courtyard at the back of the new house as well as the front verandah are just the thing for hanging baskets.
So it is quite clear that thoughtful and determined renters can grow food and flowers - and take them when they go. Water is a major consideration and a lot of the water saving and harvesting methods used by those who own their own homes are not so available to renters. However, help is on the way from the people of Sustainable Gardening Australia. They have published a whole section on water in The Renters Guide to Sustainable Gardening.
Thanks SGA for leading the way.
Now if the Victorian Government made tanks compulsory -
renters could save even more water.

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