RESIDENTS at Uniting's Nareen Terrace Retirement Village, in Hamlyn Terrace, are doing their bit for the environment by growing their own vegetables in garden beds cultivated around the property.
Maintaining the gardens beds is a way for residents to keep active while producing fresh organic vegetables and minimising waste within the village.
Recycled food scraps are deposited into compost bins which is then used to nourish the soil that the residents work on.
As a result of the team's work, the harvested fresh produce makes its way to the residents' kitchens for meals.
"We grow all sorts of vegetables and fruits for ourselves and we use it in a variety of ways to cook our own meals," Nareen Terrace resident Michael Privett said.
Every now and then, there is a little argument over who grew the biggest carrots!- Michael Privett
"We also share the organic produce with the other residents and staff at the village. Every now and then, there is a little argument over who grew the biggest carrots!"
Garden coordinator Stan Stokes said it was a welcome project.
"We've been given free rein to do what we like in the garden. Each resident has an allotment on the garden beds and this includes compost bins and even bees," he said.
"We do end up having a lot of fun."
Village manager Melissa Tome said the garden made for satisfying outcomes all round.
"The ability to participate in an activity that leads to the residents being able to cook their own harvest and share the results with each other leads to a great sense of fulfillment," she said.
Uniting has cultivated 12 garden beds and created two small orchards of fruit trees which are maintained by the residents.
Large water tanks have also been installed for watering the gardens.
The village takes environmental sustainability seriously, she said.
Uniting hires staff to restore bushland surrounding the village.
Since 2013, more than 40,000 kinds of vegetation have been planted, and an area about the size of 10 tennis courts of valued ecological bushland have been conserved by Uniting staff.
In addition to this project, Uniting is also one of the largest renewable energy generators in the aged care industry and had aligned itself with the UN sustainable development goals.