A short history of Creative Harvest
Creative Harvest turns six in 2023. Like any well-raised six-year-old, it’s got busy making its mark in the wider world.
The brainchild of the Baw Baw Sustainability Network
This celebration of earth-inspired creativity is the brainchild of the Baw Baw Sustainability Network (BBSN). Green-fingered BBSN members had been entering their flower and food gardens in the annual October Gardivalia Festival of Gardens since 2010.
When Gardivalia didn’t happen in 2017, BBSN’s Food Gardens Committee decided to launch their own event in 2018. They planned it for January, when food gardens are bursting with summer produce. And they invited local artists to showcase their work in sunny, splendid garden settings.
‘Creative Harvest – there’s an artist in my food garden’ was born.
Since 2018 the event has grown faster than a sprouting snow pea. Creative Harvest has evolved, but it’s still grounded by its founding BBSN values.
Championing sustainability and connecting community
Creative Harvest has its grassroots in BBSN members’ desire to share what they know and love about producing abundant, delicious home-grown food.
Now it’s a vibrant, buzzworthy entry on Gippsland’s event calendar. In 2021 over 650 Victorians came to learn more about growing their own food while enjoying a weekend getaway exploring West Gippsland. In 2022 over 1,000 visitors flocked to our gardens.
Questions get answered, mysteries get solved
One-on-one conversations with gardeners and creatives are the lifeblood of Creative Harvest. Questions get answered, mysteries get solved. Gardeners share their top tips for growing healthy, happy, sustainable food crops in spaces of all shapes and sizes. Creatives, makers, and producers describe and demonstrate how they work and why.
Creative Harvest quenches your thirst for green gardening knowledge and creative know-how. And because learning is hungry work, we’ve invited several Gippsland providers of fine food and coffee to bring their vans to some of our gardens. Besides that, you’ll be able to buy artisan cheeses, honey, jams, and preserves from producers in several gardens.
When you’ve had your fill of fabulous gardens and their resident creatives, treat yourself to a taste of Gippsland.
Complex times, simple pleasures
Many Creative Harvest visitors talk about living more simply and sustainably in a complicated, uncertain world.
Certainly, the COVID chaos swirling around us has heightened our urge for self-sufficient food security. While some of us hoarded pasta and loo paper, some of us also pushed plant and herb sales up by twenty-seven percent.
But a pandemic-induced rethink is only one of many reasons why we’re digging up our back yards or installing window boxes in our apartments.
Here’s what we’ve learned from five successful Creative Harvests. Loads of us, including growing numbers of young people and families, want to:
Know where our food comes from and how it’s produced – we’re curious and concerned about the entire food chain from farm to plate.
Eat delicious seasonal, locally produced, pesticide-free food to support our communities, reduce carbon footprints, cut polluting packaging, and save money
Feel the sheer unadulterated joy that comes with eating something you’ve nurtured from seed to salad or plant to plate
If you’re looking for deep inspiration and practical advice on the art and science of growing your own food.