Walking through Seasons Kallangur’s gates and through to reception, the first thing that catches your eye are the beautiful flowers in the front garden beds.
This work, as well as the rest of the garden beds that form the beautiful views from the lowset apartments and out to the newly landscaped Tranquility Trail, is the work of the Seasons Kallangur’s Garden Club, who meet up weekly each Wednesday afternoon.
The club was the brainchild of Kallangur’s receptionist Karen Houchin who decided to start up the club to get some of the residents who loved gardening together.
“The gardens were getting out of hand so Karen decided we’d try a gardening club so that’s how we got started,” says club member Ellen.
While they all came together for a common cause, their gardening skills and experience varied.
“I’m not a gardener – never was! Even in my own home that I had in Townsville, all the plants got Victor disease … the Victor mower went through everything! But my father was a beautiful gardener and I just like to get outside for a little while and potter around the gardens,” says Ellen.
Others had more experience, with Frank bringing his experience in horticulture to the team.
“I’ve loved gardening all my life, I’ve always had a garden. At one stage after I retired from my job I had a mowing and gardening business and I also studied horticulture so that’s one thing that I love doing,” says Frank.
Each week’s gardening tasks vary and Jenny, who has been a member since she joined the community three years ago, says that she also enjoys getting out in the great outdoors and getting her hands dirty, even if it’s getting harder these days.
“We go from garden to garden – wherever Karen thinks that Wayne (Kallangur’s maintenance man) hasn’t been able to get to weed or whatever. Although all of us are finding it hard to get down to weed but we’re pretty good at lopping! As long as someone can pick up the bits!”
Nell also brought a love of gardening to the team but the weekly meetups have given her so much more.
“I love the garden because I’ve had a garden all my life. I’ve been here 12 months next month and I needed to be out in the garden – as soon as I heard about the garden club I was really pleased. I’m not able to do as much as I’d like these days, but it is my favourite hobby,” says Nell.
“I think it’s the friendship and be able to get out and connect with each other over our love of gardens and flowers that I enjoy most. That’s my main reason anyway – the friendships that I’ve developed since I’ve been here – it’s been really very good.”
Muriel agrees, saying that although keeping on top of the gardens can seem like an endless task it’s great to be out in the outdoors and enjoy the likeminded company.
“It’s a never-ending job and the more people we can get into the garden the better. I’ve always had garden and vegetable gardens so it’s just something that I knew I would enjoy,” says Muriel.
“It’s enjoyable to get out and about – especially when it’s sunny. It’s good company with everybody. Anyone who’s in the garden club enjoys it because of the friendship that’s there and if you like gardening you can see something for your efforts for getting out of your unit and enjoying other people’s company.”