Growing your own food is great for your health and for the environment. It can also be a fantastic way to connect with your community.
Growing food in Yarra
There are a number of spaces that can be used to grow food in Yarra:
- private backyards and balconies
- community gardens
- schools, neighbourhood houses and community organisations
- footpaths and unused parts of roads and
We aim to support residents in all their food growing initiatives.
Private backyards and balconies
No matter how much space you have, there are ways to grow food in it.
We run a variety of workshops throughout the year to give residents skills in topics such as small space gardening, organic gardening, beekeeping, composting, keeping chickens and more. Keep an eye on our What's On page to find out when these workshops are running, or sign-up to the Yarra Environment e-news to stay informed about these and other sustainability events and programs.
If there is a topic that you would particularly like to learn about, let us know and we will try to include it in the program.
These websites have useful information about growing food at home:
- Sustainable Gardening Australia for seasonal gardening tips
- Gardenate for information on what to grow when
- Gardening Australia for gardening factsheets
- Ripe Near Me to share your harvests
Community organisations, neighbourhood houses and schools
We support schools, neighbourhood houses and non-profit community organisations to start or manage communal food gardens with grants, resources and community connections. If you'd like to know more, get in touch with one of our Urban Agriculture Facilitators.
If you are part of a school community, please help us by filling in our Urban Agriculture in Schools survey to help us work out the best ways to support schools in Yarra.
Measuring your harvest
We would like to know how much food is being grown and how much food waste is being composted in Yarra.
You can help us by recording the weight of your harvests and compost on the website Grow it Local.
This information can be both rewarding and informative for you, and the data you record helps us to see just how beneficial urban agriculture is.
Compost bins and worm farms
Compost bins and worm farms are great ways to help you garden flourish, while also reducing your contribution to landfill.
We have subsidised compost bins and worm farms available for you to purchase.
If you would like more food scraps for your compost or worm farm system, consider using Sharewaste.
History of urban agriculture in Yarra
Yarra Council’s first Urban Agriculture Strategy was adopted in 2014 to help identify and manage new opportunities for different kinds of urban agriculture activities.
The strategy was believed to be the first of its kind initiated by a local government in Australia.
We now have an updated Urban Agriculture strategy for 2019-2023, which builds on the work of the previous strategy by adopting a food systems approach, with the goal of moving towards a resilient and regenerative Yarra.
You can download the full strategy to read more about urban agriculture in Yarra.