Glendale’s dream of an edible vegetable garden began two years ago when they were contacted by the Eliot Osrin Leadership Institute (EOLI).
EOLI wanted to use Glendale as the context for one of their leadership groups who were completing a research project on food gardens. There was potential to develop the large garden at Glendale to improve the quality of life of the residents, and EOLI’s leadership group researched options by visiting vegetable gardens all over Cape Town, and gained insight from local landscapers and gardeners.
Award-winning landscape architect Tarna Klitzner was brought in to assist and through a six-month process of consultation with residents, staff and other stakeholders provided Glendale with a plan that includes many garden rooms interconnected by circle pathways. This plan also ensures wheelchair accessibility.
The Glendale vegetable garden takes inspiration from Mandala style gardens. This has resulted in a unique Magen David shaped space. The garden will contain fruit, vegetables, herbs and edible flowers; and will be watered through drip irrigation using borehole water. In the centre of the garden there is a covered hexagon shaped Garden Room that will have seating so that it can be used as an outdoor therapy room and a space for activities and relaxation. During Sukkot it will be transformed into Glendale’s Sukkah.
“The Garden Project has become a symbol of hope for Glendale residents in that the future vision is of a beautiful communal space which will attract people to Glendale and get involved through volunteer projects” said Judith Cohen, Chairperson Glendale Home Governing Board.
“Through the generous specified donation of a resident’s family member just prior to Lockdown, we were in a position to embark on building the vegetable garden. The project had to be placed on hold for six months. The dream which we believe will become a reality is that the vegetable garden will produce enough organic healthy produce to feed our residents. Glendale currently spends approximately R25 000 per month on fresh fruit and vegetables and the vegetable garden will lower this cost significantly” explained Judith.
“The vegetable garden is in line with our strategic objective to become more sustainable and to promote wellness for our residents. At Glendale we are bursting with excitement and can’t wait to begin gardening. We look forward to a time in the future post-COVID that we will be able to invite visitors to come and experience the garden with us” said Glendale Director, Shelly Korn.
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