AN ADAPTATION OF THE LUNAR CALENDAR.
NATIVE BUSHFOOD AT THE MOON MANDALA GARDEN
Ediblescapes finally has commenced planting the Edible Landscape Gardens. Last Saturday 14 July an enthusiastic group planted the first trees at the Moon Garden with Bush Tucker local native trees, including Macadamia Nut, Native Tamarind, Midgen Berry, Black Plum, Native Elderberry, Davidson’s Plum. The trees were supplied by the GC Botanical Gardens Nursery.
This is a meaningful project celebrating our local edible trees and plants, whilst focussing on our history and diversity, which will eventually build a vibrant, cohesive, community hub.
In recognition of the Kombumerri people, the traditional custodians of this land that we call the Gold Coast, Ediblescapes have added a layer to the Moon Garden mandala design that represents the six seasons of the First People’s annual calendar.
These six seasonal sections will not be planted yet. We are marking it with mulch on the ground, so we can initiate a consultation process with the Elders and the First People’s representative community groups. Hopefully this consultation process will result in a public space of knowledge exchange that facilitates the passing of knowledge to future generations.
By weather pattern observation, we can agree that the years have two colder months on the Gold Coast, which start at the Winter Solstice. They are followed by a short dry season in September, which is a kind of pre-spring. In October and November there is Spring. In December, the summer solstice marks a pre-wet and warm season. February is the hottest summer month, with the heaviest rain. In conclusion, the most comfortable months are April and May, in which it is difficult to find Autumn patterns.
However, thoughtful ecological observation is needed to connect with the six seasons environmental patterns to know what and how to facilitate the growing of edible fruits that contribute to the life of humans and animals in this region.
The First People observed ecological happenings in these six seasons, and that influenced their traditional, social customs. Sadly, in a very short time, their way of life was disturbed by the European colonial industry.
Hopefully, not all ancestral knowledge has been lost, and the Edible Landscape gardens project can be instrumental in recovering knowledge from diverse communities to pass to futures generations.