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Florence Price Gardens on the Far North Coast of NSW is naturally proud of its burgeoning herb and vegetable gardens; the produce is being enjoyed greatly by residents in the care home. The herb beds were funded by a grant from the Maggie Beer Foundation, which has at its heart a passion for promoting tasty, fresh and healthy food among our elderly Australians. As part of the Foundation’s efforts, cooking master classes are being offered around the country and in March this year, Managers and Chefs at three of RSL LifeCare’s Far North Coast Care Homes (Patrick Bugden VC Gardens, Florence Price Gardens and Fromelles Manor) attended a day of cooking with the famous chef.

As Maggie’s Foundation states “From the nutritional benefit of an edible garden at the back door to being involved in a flowering garden, everyone feels happier in a beautiful, outdoor environment. Having a space to be proud of, to ‘potter in’ and give a sense of purpose improves people’s health and, for many, gardening enables them to undertake an activity that they have always loved.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Each of these care homes also received a grant of $2000 to put towards garden spaces. The grant assisted Florence Price Gardens to build a space as part of the Wellbeing Gardens Program, an adjunct to Maggie’s highly successful “Creating an Appetite for Life” Education Program.

The garden is doing extremely well with everything growing quickly in our wonderful warm climate, with lots of water and loving care. Damien prepared and planted the garden beds with the help of our beloved dog Poppy, although it might be more truthful to say that she was more a hindrance than a help. Our residents are reaping great enjoyment from the gardens, both intending them and reaping what they sow.

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