Victorian Government

Feb 24, 2008: URGENT! It's just been discovered that the Victorian government currently only accept handwritten signatures so none of these online signatures technically count. Please download a copy of the petition at www.sgaonline.org.au and print it, sign it, collect as many signatures as you can and have it in the post by 3rd March 2008.

The petition will be handed in to my local member of parliament on the 7th March and tabled in parliament on the 11th March.

These dates are important so as to make a difference when the government review restrictions for the restriction level change in June.




Produce gardens provide us with the very fruit, vegetables and herbs we eat, and many of us have worked hard to create these gardens with much of our own time and money.

It's understood that keeping higher water use ornamental gardens and lawns can be seen as luxury items in times of water shortage, but forcing us to let our produce gardens become unproductive and/or die is an outrage.

Only being able to water on two pre-specified days of the week is not the most efficient way to keep a garden alive and productive and can lead to stressed and unproductive plants, defeating the purpose of this type of garden.

Produce gardens should be allowed efficient, mindful watering, when required. Education to efficient water use, is the key to saving water for Victoria, not forcing gardens to dwindle & perhaps perish.

To be able to grow our own food:-

1) Saves water for Victoria, according to a study done by David Holmgren, co-founder of ‘Permaculture’, (Holmgren Design Services), efficient backyard growers can use only one fifth of the water compared to commercial growers per $ value of produce.

2) Saves up to 25% of greenhouse gases by eliminating ‘food miles’, this means our fruit and vegetables don’t use excess energies of ; being machine harvested, transported to sorting sheds, stored in cool rooms, transported to market, then to supermarket, lit up by fluorescent lights and then transported again to homes to be then stored again in the fridge, whilst losing vitality and freshness along the way.

3) Reduces the overall Australia wide use of biocides like herbicides, pesticides and fungicides. This is because home produce gardens are naturally quite biodiverse, therefore resilient, and easy to apply natural pest control methods to.

4) Brings people and families together outdoors to gain healthy organic produce, fresh air, exercise and an awareness to our connection with nature.

I believe that it is our right to grow and monitor our own fresh, healthy, chemical free food in our backyards. I am asking for an exemption from current water restrictions or for introduction of more appropriate water rules for our important produce gardens.

See news report on this petition http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cETRylv_EAw

To the Legislative Assembly of Victoria

The Petition of residents of Victoria, draws to the attention of the House,

That under Stage 3 water restrictions, we are only able to water our gardens twice a week. Produce gardens are different to purely ornamental gardens in that they provide us with the very fruit, vegetables and herbs we eat. This is the very freshest & therefore healthiest type of food you can get and through recent study it has been shown that home gardeners can potentially grow their own produce with 1/5 of the water than commercial growers per $ value of goods, so we believe it should be our right to be able to grow and eat it.

We, the undersigned, know that only being able to water these type of gardens twice a week may be merely enough to keep them alive, but more regular watering is often required, that is before the soil dries out, to keep these gardens productive. Production is the very purpose of produce gardens so they should be given efficient, mindful watering , as required.

The petitioners therefore request that the Legislative Assembly of Victoria,

Acknowledge and establish that home produce gardens are a different category from ornamental gardens and either allow them an exemption from current water restrictions or; under advice from an experienced, environmentally aware, horticultural organisation, for example, Sustainable Gardening Australia, introduce more appropriate water rules for produce gardens.

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The Allow Water for Produce Gardens in Victoria petition to Victorian Government was written by marika and is in the category Environment at GoPetition.