09 November, 2017

Last Working Bee for 2017 this Sunday

Hi everyone - been a long time since I updated the Stationeers' blog, apologies! There's been plenty going on for Merri Common over the past year, but also at my workplace, so I've struggled to provide regular updates.

First things first: our last working bee for the year is this Sunday at 10:00 - please meet us at the Northcote Rifle Club (snacks and beverages on site) before getting stuck into the large triangle of land beside the rail intersection and Charles Street, opposite Caddaye's Corner. We'll be doing some in-fill planting between all the trees and shrubs we planted just ahead of this dry winter - a great way to catch up with your neighbours while making our neighbourhood a more beautiful place to live, come along, bring your kids/friends/parents and maybe a spade or two!

Second, we're grateful to have a grant from Darebin Council to help fund some artwork to be painted on the concrete slab that's holding up the new yellow deckchairs on the Common. The chairs will be on holiday for awhile while a crew from Arts Project Australia gets busy painting a mural - look out for James McSporran and James McDonald doing their thing.

I hope you've noticed how spectacular the indigenous grasses and shrubs are looking in the garden on the east side of the Station - we've had a little "information plaque" made to help locals identify the various species in the mix. Here's a little photographic montage titled "Angle Grinder, Three Cords and the Truth" to commemorate the installation! Our Chair, Rohan Griffiths, our Secretary, Janna Hilbrink and yours truly on the job, installing a plaque designed by our artist in residence Jela Ivankovic-Waters. Bit hard to read the plaque in the photos, but here's the gist if you're curious: http://merri-stationeers.blogspot.com.au/p/indigenous-plants-merri-station.html

"Idiot Presumes Mastery of Powertools"

Janna in Hi-Vis on Charles and Railway
For your reading pleasure and maintenance crew edification (i.e. do not spray herbicide)

21 September, 2016

Father's Day Planting and Prize Seating

Thanks to those who came out on Father's Day to get some babies in the ground! We've been lucky to have some consistent spring rain to help get the new arrivals on their way.

The crew from Street Furniture Australia were with us for the morning and took a few happy snaps, below; there's also a great write-up on their website .

Thanks again to Street Furniture Australia for providing the fabulous new "banana lounges," won by Stationeer Jela in their recent competition, sited and installed with the kind assistance of Darebin Council officers. The Common is used for a wide variety of activities by people of all ages, so siting was a challenge, but we consider we struck the right balance.

"Bananana" *doo doooo doo-doo-doo* as endorsed
by this small, black canine and accompanying primates

Liam, Conor and Mike Flattley on the job in the indigenous garden.
Liam, Conor and Mike Flattley on the job in the Indigenous Garden

Rohan Griffths getting it done
(foreground: The Rear Aspect of Heather Hesterman)

02 September, 2016

Father's Day is Planting Day!

To continue our work so far this year we will be having another planting and maintenance day on Sunday 4 September from 10 am to about noon. We will be planting, weeding and pruning both sides of the station.

We know the place is looking great, but a beautiful garden is never finished - and it's a terrific way to meet your neighbours and connect with our community. Yes, we know it coincides with Father's Day, but what better opportunity for dads to show off their new tools than this?

Please meet at 10am at the front of the Rifle Club (Platform 1 side) and bring gloves (we will have some available) and any of the following tools:

• Shovel or spade
• Fork
• Hoe
• Wheelbarrow
• Mattock
• Loppers
• Secateurs

Refreshments will be provided!

We are in the throes of completing a submission for VicTrack funding aimed at established stationeer groups. The maximum grant amount of $700 is not to be sneezed at and we have a lovely letter of support from Fiona Richardson, our "patroness". 
N.B. There will be one more working bee on 23 October, when we will concentrate on plantings west of the station. Save the date!

18 March, 2015

Indigenous Plants on the Merri Common

Thought we might share some of the work students at Northcote High School produced for us, identifying some of the indigenous plant species we've re-established on site at Merri Common. Check out our new page: Indigenous Plants @ Merri

22 July, 2014

Follow us on Facebook!

At last, less verbose yet stunningly visual posts are now available to you, our insatiable readers, on Facebook.  I feel like we're following the trajectory of Samuel Beckett.  Soon it will be down to a Twitter feed pregnant with meaningful silence and a photo of a wombat contemplating a rock, maybe a haiku or two about onion weed.

Meanwhile, contemplate the magnificence of the recent work by the City of Darebin at Caddaye's Corner.  Great stuff from landscape architect Nadia Combe and her team, this adds so much to the precinct and has used many of the species planted on the Merri Common to give everything a much needed sense of continuity and character.  Wonderful to have such a consultative approach to the neighbourhood's development from our Council's officers - thank you.

16 April, 2014

Autumn Working Bee and Barbeque - Sunday, 4 May 2014

The large section of the Indigenous Garden laid bare by the Metro cabling works and platform repair will need some hard work and TLC now that the grimmest part of summer is over. Metro management has funded replacement plants and has made sure that mulch was spread over the whole area, including large segments of Merri Common, to ready the soil for replanting. 

And so a Re-Planting Day has been  scheduled for:

Sunday, 4 May, from 10.00 till 2.00

Come to the Merri Common with some gardening tools - wheelbarrows, shovels, spades, picks - and an appetite for a BBQ lunch!

09 April, 2014

Plans for the Charles and Clarke St interface with the Station precinct

In February the Stationeers submitted an entry to the "Transforming Darebin Competition" for the Rucker Ward category.  Sadly we missed out on this terrific initiative, but below is the concept - we aim to push on with this through landscaping efforts and arts-based grant submissions in future.