We believe that if we want to do great things with a communal garden, for it to be healthy, inclusive, stay focused and create new and ongoing opportunities for people then we should have an Holistic plan. This plan keeps us focused on what we want to achieve and guides all of our new and ongoing developments in the garden.
Recently we were visited by Community Gardens Australia as part of their national gathering and tours of gardens in Victoria. The feedback was fantastic and extremely positive. Many of our visitors commented not just on the quality of the garden and what we are trying to do, but also on the fact that we were the only garden they had been to that had a Holistic plan. Most gardens don’t have them. When they looked around, at our garden and club members they could see the plan in action and the difference it made. Lots of the visitors commented that it was the best garden they had been to. We think they said that, not so much because of the plants and how the garden is presented, but mainly because of a stated and lived philosophy of inclusion and creating opportunity for people. They were keen for other gardens they were engaged with to develop Holistic plans for themselves.
Our first Holistic Plan was developed in 2015 as part of our preliminary planning, before the garden was even established. This allowed us to create a strong foundation to identify our values and inform our decision making. It is based on the Holistic Decision Making Framework by Dan Palmer. More resources and examples of this can be found via the following link – https://holisticdecisionmaking.org/examples/
A copy of our Milparinka SEEDS Holistic Plan is here. Please feel free to use this if it helps you to think about your own garden.