Welcome

Welcome to the Canberra Organic Growers Society web site.  We are a group of gardeners (mainly urban) dedicated to growing our own organic fruit and vegetables, either in backyards or community gardens.  This web site contains information on various practical aspects of organic gardening and is particularly relevant to the Canberra region.  It also contains information about our community gardens, notices of coming events of interest to gardeners and a blog which includes gardening questions and answers.  The web site will be regularly updated so please subscribe to our RSS feed so that you are notified of any significant additions to the site, new events and breaking news.

News and Events

Upcoming events

22 September 2015 07:30 PM
A story of water and food Richard Stirzaker studied Agricultural Science at the University of Sydney and did his post graduate studies in soil science. He joined CSIRO in 1990 to take up a post-doctoral fellowship and has since carried out research projects on agroforestry, salinity and irrigation. His passion is developing simple tools for monitoring water and solutes that can be used in the context of adaptive learning. His current work focuses on food security and small scale irrigation projects in West and Southern Africa. He is an honorary professor at the University of Pretoria in South Africa where he has supervised numerous PhD students. Dr Stirzaker is possibly best-known amongst home gardeners for his 2010 publication, Out of the scientist’s garden: a story of water and food. Richard’s talk will focus on a new instrument he has just developed that shows soil moisture by coloured lights. The system is being used in Africa now and is very well-suited to home gardens.
Northside Community Centre, Rosevear Pl, Dickson

27 October 2015 07:30 PM
Q&A night with Keith Colls Keith Colls will be with us once again to explore solutions to those thorny questions encountered in the orchard and veggie patch. Keith is a qualified horticulturalist, a founding member of the group which established the Canberra City Farm (a centre in Turner which demonstrates urban agriculture techniques and sustainable living), and a past president of the Canberra Organic Growers Society. He has been involved in establishing and managing community food gardens in Canberra and Queanbeyan since the late 1990s and has been conducting gardening courses for CIT Solutions since 2001. The October meeting is an opportunity to bring along any puzzling pests and weeds you have come across whilst preparing your garden for spring sowing. This is also a chance to share your own experiences and remedies, along with your views on the principles and philosophies underpinning our choice to garden organically. From microbes to mega seed companies, no subject is too big or too small!
Northside Community Centre, Rosevear Pl, Dickson

24 November 2015 07:30 PM
COGS Christmas Party Christmas party The November COGS meeting is the last meeting for 2015 as well as our Christmas party and end-of-year social gathering. Come and catch up with other members over a cooling drink and nibbles. Drinks will be supplied but please bring a plate to share. COGS meetings will re-start in February 2016.
Northside Community Centre, Rosevear Pl, Dickson

Majura Community Centre

Other activities

Organic Gardening for Beginners at CIT Solutions, run by an experienced COGS member (a course fee applies).

The next course will start Semester 1 2015. Each course runs for four sessions of 3 hours each.  Course details and on-line enrolment is available at http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=1%26SubcategoryID=35

Composting and Worm Farms

The next Composting and Worm farming workshop will be held in conjunction with CIT Solutions on 8 November 2014.  Each workshop will be 3 hours (1:30 to 4:30pm).  Workshop details and on-line enrolment are available at  http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=1%26SubcategoryID=35 .  A workshop fee applies.

Organic Pest and Disease Management for Home Gardeners

The next workshop will start on 3 September 2014.  It will provide practical information to enable participants to deal with common pests and diseases encountered in the home garden using organic methods. The main focus will be on pests and diseases of fruit and vegetables in Canberra, but these same techniques are also applicable to ornamental plants. The workshop will consist of three sessions of two hours each.  http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=3%26SubcategoryID=35 .  A workshop fee applies.

Soil, Potting Mixes and Watering Systems for Home Gardeners

The next workshop is scheduled to start on 13 September 2014. There will be two sessions of two and a half hours each. Learn about managing soil for optimal fertility in growing fruit and vegetables using organic principles. Participants are asked to bring samples of their own garden soil for testing. For those growing fruit and vegetables in pots and planter boxes, potting mixes will also be discussed. Advice will be provided on setting up efficient watering systems for the fruit and vegetable garden. To enrol go to http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=3%26SubcategoryID=35. A workshop fee applies.

Introduction to Horticulture

The next workshop is scheduled to start on 22 October 2014. There will be six sessions of two and a half hours each. If you are interested in growing plants and landscaping or want to know more about the best plants for a Canberra climate, then this course is sure to inspire your green thumb. The course offers a taste of what it is like to be a professional horticulturalist. To enrol go to http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=2%26SubcategoryID=35. A workshop fee applies.

Courtyards and Balcony Gardens

The next workshops will be on 9 September and 18 October 2014.  It will provide practical information on building and maintaining balcony and courtyard gardens using organic methods. The workshop will consist of one session of three hours. http://www.shortcourses.cit.edu.au/categories/list.html?page=2%26SubcategoryID=35.  A workshop fee applies.

Compostable Material Available from Tuggeranong Hyperdome

The Tuggeranong Hyperdome has a variety of organic waste available for composting or worm farms including waste from Fresh Life the fruit market, waste from the Food court, coffee grinds, serviettes, some cooked meats.
They would prefer these waste products did not go to the tip.  To access these compostable materials for your compost heap or worms please contact Wayne Hudson on 6293 1000 or email Wayne_Hudson(at)cfsgam.com.au.

The Energy Smart Workshop for ACT Homeowners.

This is a FREE workshop being delivered throughout ACT Libraries. Workshops and places are limited. The workshop runs for 40 minutes per session or 2 hours total and covers
(1) Home Improvements: discover how to make your home more comfortable and less expensive to run;
(2) Energy Consumption: bring along your energy bills and take the guess-work out of your usage; and
(3) Energy Smart Actions: discover free and simple actions that save you money and suit your household.

Take home workbook included packed full of activities, information and options. Prepare for winter today. For session times, refer to www.sustainact.com. Book Mon-Thurs by phoning 6248 0885 or email energysmart@sustainact.com