Within cooee of the writhing transport interchange on Brisbane’s Northside, there’s a block of land where splashes of paint and untidy gardens make you wonder if hippies have invaded the inner-city suburbs. It’s Northey Street City Farm — a non-profit permaculture hub where innovations take root, ideas blossom and food grows.
Northey Street City Farm provides the space and the skills and the knowledge for people to learn how to grow food organically.
Over the last ten years, volunteers have transformed this dull park into a vibrant community hub that promotes sustainable lifestyle and gardening practices.
Allotments are available for those who want to try gardening in their own little section.
The kitchen garden grows food for meals that are sold from the on-site café.
The facilities are painted with multicoloured paints — adding a cheerful atmosphere to the utilitarian sheds dotted around the grounds.
Children are welcome at the city farm — they have their own designated gardens.
Toys are available for us to use while we visit.
Delaney and Calista examine a bee hive.
Australian native bees are tiny and sting-less. They look more like flies than bumblebees.
A friendly donation bird-box invites us to feed it and make a wish.
The resident rooster is probably the largest I've ever seen. It's as tall as Delaney, and a little sign warns us that it likes to bite.
Nasturtiums are sprawling everywhere, and the girls pick a couple to play with. "Hello," says Calista's. "Hello," replies Dell. I love the way the girls can personify everything!
The talented artist Bob McMahon demonstrates his ingenious flute made from recycled materials.
Bob has decorated so many signs and pillars around the grounds. It's a delight to see his work in unexpected places.
Recycled newspapers are mixed with clay to make a durable art medium that can be applied to different surfaces.
Bob McMahon's fine artwork amazes me with its variety and detail.
After seeing some of Bob's work, Brioni wants to have a go at clay sculpture.
A palette of different colours is made from different soils.
Brioni fashions a rosebud and paints it with the earthy colours.
This durable, weatherproof sign is made from burning letters into a flat piece of polystyrene — innovative recycling done well!
Cali and Dell experiment with the percussion pipes.
A large, thin tyre hangs from the tree and attracts the children.
Delaney emerges from the sandbox for a swing. This has been a good day out for her.
Northey Street City Farm runs organic markets on Sundays and offers tours on Tuesday mornings (we arrived too late today). Although we spent several hours here, there’s still so much we didn’t see, and we’d like to come back — each of us for a different reason, but it all adds up to something local we’d like to do again!