Vegetable garden set to open to public at South Bank

Kitchen garden for the people: Paul Hoffman at the new Epicurious Garden.
Kitchen garden for the people: Paul Hoffman at the new Epicurious Garden. Photo: Robert Shakespeare

It's a sign of the times when a formal garden in a public space is replaced with a vegie patch.

Epicurious Garden, a herb and vegie garden that will allow anyone to take home a sprig of herbs for dinner, is about to be launched at South Bank. It will also be open for taste-testing and gardening advice.

The 1500-square-metre garden will be run largely by volunteers and is located in the parklands in the former formal garden between the stream and River Quay.

The head of operations and horticulture, Paul Hoffmann, says the plan, which is about a year in the making, is to create a kitchen garden to give people the opportunity to discover how to grow food plants sustainably at home.

"There are a lot of plants that will grow in the subtopics but we've also planted for biodiversity with herbs such as basil, thyme and coriander as well as coffee hedges, tamarind trees, pineapples, climbing beans, taro and lots of edible flowers," he says.

Horticultural staff and volunteers will be on hand to answer any questions and help people to harvest produce (in moderation).

"We also have some things in pots as well to show people that yes, even if you only have a unit with a small balcony, you can still grow herbs like parsley, chive and basil," Hoffmann says.

Epicurious Garden is fully organic and will have interpretive signage along with links to recipes. Cooking demonstrations are also planned in the future. See