The University is not just a place of Learning, it is also for many, a place of LIVING! (over 1100 students live on campus)…This is an opportunity to give your feedback on what you think of the Curtin Student Garden Project. Your experiences & stories. Please submit your comments below.


25 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kazeem on February 28, 2013 at 8:11 am

    You won’t believe I joined the CVGVs just under 3 weeks. In my first day of meeting Peter, he gave me a 1hr intensive training on gardening….lol. For someone that knew nothing about gardening previously, it was both intimidating and interesting.

    I haven’t done much for the garden, but I have gained a lot…. today, for example, I had a free ride to Freemantle to check out electric bikes and even made a new friend.So lovely!!!

    All these make me want to give my all to the garden. There is so much to learn from Peter and CVGVs and I can’t wait to get into it all.


  2. Wooooo…………..I love fruit and vegetables garden planting at the back yard of
    laneway near Erica Underwood House. Yes …feeling so good we have projects like these.

    My back yard is the laneway, after meeting Peter and visiting Kurrajong Student Garden, I am so sprice how wanderful the garden is…..

    Our earth more healthy cover by the green. Thank God …PETER idea and hard
    working is so amazing. We must supporting and give more help doing watering and
    planting more fruits trees and vegetables.

    I live in the area about 25 years, I always wander a lots of lands never been used for
    anyting, our earth become warmer, projects like these is so excellence.

    As Malay living in the area for long time, I love if any Malaysian student helping
    watering and planting too. Used curry leave, Kaffir leave, lemon grass and etc. to
    be used for cooking- Cook satay….Tom Yam…and so on.

    I will helping watering the garden if no one do the duty…..
    planting herbs and used the vegetable for my dinner…..

    Bye for now- June


  3. Posted by Tanti on November 14, 2012 at 4:42 am

    What drew me first into Student Garden, because it reminded me of the backyard garden back at home. Turned out, the Student Garden is taking care in more professional way.
    As mentioned by some other students already, some of the herbs and plants are bringing nice memory about home, like coriander, Kaffir limes, parsley, etc.
    My fave activity in the garden is’s a good place to winding down too, for a while, from study.. releasing my stress and made the plants happy.
    Thank you Peter for coordinating the activity.


  4. Posted by Mia on November 5, 2012 at 11:51 am

    It is my luck and an impulse to explore something unseen that led me to the Vegie Garden. It is different. It is far more than a garden run by the professional gardeners and filled with only flowers which could only be observed in a distance. It is our garden. A world where we bury the hope of life and see it shoot and grow and become iridescent.
    It is Peter who has spent so much time in caring for the garden. He build it from nothing and what amazes us is that little garden full of richness and happiness to offer.
    I love his idea of running a garden with hands of students and tutors. I am more impressed by how this created community actually grew in popularity and awaked everyone’s childhood dream of seeing his dream come true.
    That bit of memory where I helped to stir the mud and organic rubbish together to make rich soil for planting is still vivid and is memorable because it is really a hands-on experience for obtaining real knowledge of recycling and creating and preserving…..
    It is a great pity for me not being able to come much to the garden. But if I can sometime go by and see the door still open, inside which possibility of hope for life and growth is hidden , I would appreciate it with a true heart and deeply inspired spirit………


    • Thanks for taking the time to write down your thoughts Mia, really appreciate it πŸ™‚


      • Posted by Mia on November 10, 2012 at 9:10 am

        That is the least I can do now. I hope I can arrange my timetable more wisely next semester to make as many as possible visits to our garden (∩_∩)

  5. Posted by Kevin on June 23, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    I first heard of the Curtin Vegie Garden during this semester’s orientation week and feel it was an awesome experience for me. Moving the pile of mulch was a real challenge:p The poo collection at ascot was quite an expedition and I discovered some nice spots by the river thanks to Peter. Unfortunately we didn’t see any horses there. I would like to congratulate Peter for bringing up such a lovely garden as well as for the time and effort he’s put into it.


  6. Posted by Lidwina on June 16, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    First of all, I want to say thank you to Peter. Although I just joined the CVGVs this year, I have learnt a lot from CVGV. I only knew how to water my garden, now I know how to make ‘poo soup’ and home made insect repellent. πŸ˜€
    I wish I had joined CVGV way earlier so that I could learn more from Peter (and other CVGVs too!).
    I haven’t been able to wake up early, but I will try to visit and take care of the garden more often.
    I wish CVGV and peter the best of luck. πŸ™‚


  7. Posted by Patryc Willis on June 15, 2010 at 10:51 am

    I really love the vegie garden, coming from the country and being raised with lots of raw organic produce, it is nice to have an opportunity to get a taste of that at the veggie garden on campus and being involved in the maintaining of the veggie garden as well helps me feel like I am part of a bigger activity towards biodiversity.

    I live at guild house and I have asked the other tenants in my flat to put veggie scraps in a scrap bucket which I drop off to the veggie compost barrels once it is full. I am a raw foodist at heart and I like to eat as much raw food as possible so it is great to see a local fresh source we can get right off the plant.

    I would like to see more access to water at the veggie garden, I have noticed a number of times when it has been dry the garden has no access to water. This slows the growth of the plants, and although it is raining now, I know that plants rely on regular watering to maximize growth.

    All and all I would just like to say I appreciate the fact that we have a veggie garden and it’s a great addition to university living.


    Patryc Willis


  8. Posted by Sabreena Ahmed on June 15, 2010 at 10:26 am

    I still cherish the moments spent with the CVGVS. The first time i heard about it was from Peter. I had seen a poster and asked him about it while cooking in my kitchen at Guild House. Peter was the acting Housing Assistant of Guild House then. That afternoon when i came back from class, i found a small paper bag with basil, tomatoes and some other small vegetables. I couldn’t help but smile at this lovely gesture from Pete. He became a good friend with whom i felt free to talk about my problems (i still do).
    Whenever i felt lonely or had pressure of studies, I used to go to the garden. The parties at Pete’s place or getting together with other friends were indeed the loveliest moments in Perth. I still remember the first Saturdays of the month when i used to sacrifice my sleep and walk up the red path that connect my hostel Guild House with the main campus of Curtin. I used to carry two bags of compost I gathered from my kitchen.It was a pleasure to sacrifice weekend sleep to meet my friends at the garden. I really miss them a lot.
    I hope the CVGV’s is expanded with new volunteers and the tradition of being close with nature remains alive.



  9. Posted by Sophie Smith on June 11, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    Just want to say a big thanks – having the veggie garden is great; it’s nice to know there’s a nice place you can go and chill at when you need a break from studies! Being from the country, I really appreciate the fresh produce and getting down with the mud!!
    I got to go and collect horse manure with some of the guys for the veggie garden which really gave me a taste of home (because of the horses!) and relaxed me for the rest of the day!
    Hope we get to see the veggie garden last for years to come! – Super idea!
    Sophie xx


  10. Posted by Samantha on June 11, 2010 at 7:18 am


    I met Peter 2 years ago via email. He was my first friend at Curtin. I was leaving my home, family, husband and life in Toronto to pursue my dream of being an Occupational Therapist. I never even heard of Perth Australia until 2.5 years ago. Peter introduced me to the garden and it became a place where I went to relax. Being a master’s student is filled with happiness and hard work but often more often stress and anxiety. The garden is where I could be alone, think and breath. Watering the plants when I had time ( (limited when your not sleeping because you spend 80% of the time studying) was a real treat. I liked talking to the plants. That might sound crazy but I really see plants as living breathing things and well I like to talk and well plants always listen and dont’ talk back. HAHAHA Peter himself is very dedicated to the garden and to the students. He is one of the nicest people I have ever met. He’s funny, lively and a great friend. I’m going to miss the garden a lot. I live North of the city so my time in the garden has diminished. But when I lived in the South end of Perth and on campus it was a real joy in my life. I even got some students composting. YIPPI Thanks Peter.



  11. The vegie patch has inspired me in many a way. I have been living in perth for the past 4-5 months now and when I first got here I hardly knew anyone. I had nothing to do and was bored for most part. That was until I was introduced to the vege patch by Pete. Ever since I spent hours there alone watering the plants, turning compost and just meditating. I would take my girlfriend there when we first started dating and we had a lot of good times there. I have made many good friends and also learnt a lot about gardening and self-sustainability.

    The patch is more than just a vegie garden to me. It is a model for the future. Pete’s vision of building patches like this one all around campus at the different houses to create little self-sustainable communitees is just genius. And I surely do hope he gets the funds he deserves to keep this program going. It is more than just a program to Pete. His passion and dedication to that passion is very moving and inspiring. I will leave you with a poem that I wrote which the vegie patch gave me a lot of inspiration for:

    Live simply and simply live

    Be like the sand and absorb the shape of the passing season, forget it just as easily.

    Be like the tree and strive towards the light.
    never stop growing.

    Be like the gull and fly in groups, jolly and high,
    do however take your occasional lone adventure.

    Be like the grass and sway madly through the storm,
    fret not for your roots will hold you down.

    Be like the river and have faith that you will someday reach the sea,
    enjoy the journey there.


  12. Posted by johnny huynh on June 11, 2010 at 5:47 am

    hi guys. i am a member of the garden too, but you guys probably do not know me because i always miss the Saturday busy bee :(. My main contribution to the garden is just simply organic compost deposit weekly. Even though it is not a big deal like you guys doing (such as sweaty digging, wet watering…), i think it is a great foundation for a healthy garden. As Peter said “it makes good use of daily organic kitchen waste” which can yield better crops. This concept can apply to the actual life as well. as being a student, the small new things i am learning everyday will yield a better future. Therefore, i’ve learnt a lot meaningful lessons just simply by depositing waste. i will support this garden and send my message to many people, and i still have a lot to learn from the Curtin University veggi garden volunteers.


  13. Posted by Shaunna on June 11, 2010 at 2:58 am

    I am very proud to say that I am a Curtin Volunteer of Veggie Garden. Hahahaha~~

    Since Jan 2009, I already started to help in the garden. Veggie Garden provides good opportunities for me to meet and work with a group of people who are from different countries. We went through a lot of wonderful time together as a team to make the garden cleaner, more organized, more pretty. It took us a lot of time to manage it. However, during that time we all had fun and enjoyed @_<.

    For example, we had a great time in collecting the manure from horses to feed our plants in garden. Hahaha, I was so happy because that was my first time to touch and feed horse. Peter, thank you. Besides happiness, we also felt tired. There is a lot of work that need to be done, but we are satisfied as our garden becomes great, great and great.

    Finally, October 25th 2009 is our garden’s opening ceremony. That was awesome and I believe that there are more people getting to know and loving this garden, especially for those who love gardening.

    I had a wonderful time and learnt a lot of things. Such as, networking, learning about gardening, working as a team and contributing well, getting to know how to organize effectively and learning more about different cultures and languages, and so on. Somehow, I feel that joining this garden enhances my strength and improves my weakness. Hahahhah~~ anyway, I hope more and more people will join and have an unforgettable experience with us~~~ @_@

    Good luck on final exams guys~~~


  14. Posted by Nina,

    Peter running the Veggie Garden will be missed. After much thought and deliberation, it is clear to me the Veggie Garden is special because of the community it creates, thanks to fun-loving-knowledgeable-persevering Peter at its fore and the nature of food as a catalyst for bringing people together. From before accepting my housing offer at Curtin, I knew about the Veg Patch thanks to the little link at the bottom of that-housing-dude’s email, and was excited about this little green gem nestled in a campus residence, so easily accessible! Having lived five years in student housing at my previous university, I was beginning to feel the staleness of campus-living, so the patch added unexpected, but much appreciated, refreshment when I moved in.

    An aspiring gardener with little know-how, thanks Peter for encouraging me to get involved! From the discipline of watering those hot summer days to learning NO ONIONS in the compost b/c worms are picky eaters, to learning how to pick lemon grass the proper way…! I’m a more accomplished gardener than before, but more importantly perhaps, was able to indulge my passion for growing food (and then eating it, of course!). Also, the garden has helped me in little ways financially, as a “poor starving student,” but that’s another topic for a rainy day… It is obvious to me, from the Busy Bees on Saturday, to the email list-serve, to going to get manure for the patch, that the garden brings people together. I only have to contrast the Veg to the gardens that have popped up around campus: I especially notice the small garden outside the International Student office, and I wonder how much use or attention it gets. I have seen Curtin Garden Staff weeding and watering, but I don’t feel invited to pluck of the fruits of that garden, or contribute. I don’t know if I’d want to anyways, seeing as it’s near the Tav and I can only imagine what shinanigans a drunk student might get up to. So, except for the fact that the path affords me a short cut to my destination, the “garden” is wasted on me. For me, being able to contribute and sharing responsibility with other people, meeting other people, is community. There is a richness, a joy, in being able to participate in making a garden what it is. And I love the proximity to my home: when my friend forgot to buy parsley for her homemade guacamole, I ran up to the garden to nix some, and we all enjoyed the fruits of that labour. Thanks Peter for getting the ball rolling, for encouraging and organizing us all and creating the community that there is today. Anyways, I hope the best for the garden in the future; I’m still keeping my fingers crossed for that placement Peter πŸ™‚ Good luck!


    ps- Seriously, where else can one learn about insect repellents for dummies? The Curtin Garden staff as they water the sparse uni-plots? hmmm. I wonder… :p


  15. Posted by Ashly on June 10, 2010 at 2:45 am

    Thank you so much Peter for establishing such a beautiful garden:)That’s what I have dreamed to have some day.It’s a place where I could get rid of something annoying and where I can just relax and be happy.
    I love the smell of soil and plants there–they are so good. I love to walk in the garden and water those lovely flowers and trees,seeing them smiling to the sun.I love to seed and weed, and etc. That’s a lot of fun.
    You know, those self-planted veges taste so nice–much better than those in the supermarkets.I now know how to cook more werstern dishes,haha:)
    Well, so much memory.All the best to the garden–a place of happiness and peace.


  16. Posted by Karine on June 9, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    Hey Pete,

    Ive so much admiration for your devotion and hard work for the Garden..its such a nice place to

    1. Relax and escape from studies
    2. Enjoy nice veggies without any fertilizers or whatsoever
    3. enjoy picking vegetables ( at no cost !! ) and very soon some fruits too

    It is not just a garden…its a place where you meet new people, make new friends while sharing some common interest..You taught many of us about recycling. Its amazing how this garden changed over a year ( since im studying here) – especially a place where the soil isnt that rich-where we always have to take care of it, add poo- ( enjoyed those days hey…ahaha) and picking herbs which remind me so much of home .

    I sincerely hope you will be able to continue this project with the help of Uni…its amazing how you could do that for 3 years without any funds Pete….You did a great job~



  17. Posted by Morgan Mc Guire on June 9, 2010 at 9:06 am

    The garden is awesome, the range of deliciousness makes the mouth water! Looking forward to seeing it in full swing in the run up to the summer!



  18. Posted by Balwinder on June 9, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Hi guys,
    This has been a real special thing to happen. I always wanted to practice gardening, the place were I come from (Bombay) has a lifestyle which has made some distance between nature and ourselves!!

    I am glad to be a part of this project and hope to continue till I am a PhD student atleast. ( I have 3 more years left).

    Glad that this project happened to Curtin University!! Happy to be here and meet likeminded and wonderful people πŸ™‚

    When I go back to my hometown, I would like to carry forward on with this beautiful thing πŸ™‚

    See you all soon!!

    Best wishes and regards


  19. Posted by Eric on June 7, 2010 at 8:06 am

    G’day Mate!
    I call myself really lucky that I bumped into you on the Curtin orientation day! I was amazed by the garden and how much work the students and especially you have put into it. And although so much has been done it still has so much potential (i.e. the front garden and now the meditation area in the back)!!

    I really found this project wonderful and a perfect balance between the theoretical stuff we do in the Uni and then getting our hands dirty in the garden πŸ™‚

    Hopefully I can stay here for another semester, so I can witness by myself how the garden develops in summer and in the next πŸ™‚ (and also to try it again with the front hedge)

    Get well soon,


  20. Posted by Michelle Gan on June 3, 2010 at 2:05 am

    Thanks for this opportunity Peter. First of all I must say that I was truly fascinated when I first walked into this Curtin Garden, thanks to you for introducing this Garden to me n my family. Its amazing how you and the volunteers have transformed this garden from where it was first started to present state. Thanks for making it happened Peter!

    During my times at the Garden, I get to see many beautiful plants such as herbs, vegetables and fruit trees being planted. I particularly enjoy looking at the Kaffir Limes tree and the basil…the Kaffir limes tree brings me a lot of many beautiful memories back home…you see my late grandmother used to plant one right in front of her house and with her TLC, the trees grown beautifully and this plant has so many usage too…from the leaves right up to the fruit…i simply loves the smell of Kaffir leaves.. and you know what, I actually bought one from the Sunday market the following week and planted at home..great stuff:)

    I also enjoy seeing my two girls running around playing with Finn…it was a nice feeling to see them having fun, painting the pole during last hot summer…thanks again for all this wonderful memories…Cheers, Michelle, Maxcin, Maegan and Tom


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