‘Dedication’: Winning gardener shares his tips
EVERY afternoon, Stanley Bennett spends two hours in his garden.
He takes two glasses of red wine with him to tend to his large array of edible plants.
Mr Bennett said his tip for a prosperous garden was talking to the plants.
“You can talk about whatever you like,” he said.
At 85, Mr Bennett has no thoughts of stopping.
In his garden, you’ll find lady finger bananas, chillies and many other fruit and vegetables.
Mr Bennett shares what he grows with his friends.
He is extremely proud of his Carolina Reaper chillies – the hottest type in the world.
He said the trick to coping with the spice was to have a yoghurt and cucumber mix on hand to offset the fiery feeling.
Mr Bennett’s passion and hard work helped him win the edible garden category at the 2019 My Home Awards.
This year, there were 23 entrants across eight categories.
Other best garden categories included house, courtyard, balcony, waterwise, communal and children’s.
Newcomer Sharmayne James took out the title of best new gardener.
The awards, run by the Department of Housing and Public Works, recognised and celebrated the time people living in public housing took to create and maintain beautiful gardens over the year.
Mr Bennett, along with other category winners, was presented his award at the Gladstone Bowls Club on Wednesday.
Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher presented the winners with their prizes.
He said it was only a small prize, but would encourage the winners to keep working on their gardens.
The competition has run for five years and Mr Butcher said it was getting bigger and bigger.
Mr Butcher congratulated the entrants who had entered every year of the competition.
Mr Butcher said it was great to see the tenants of the government’s housing looking after the yards and growing beautiful gardens.
“It certainly gets them out in their yards and staying active,” Mr Butcher said.
“A lot of time and effort goes into it.”
Mr Butcher congratulated all the entrants and looked forward to what the competition would bring next year.