Nestled in the peaceful community of Sri Hartamas lies a garden of edibles and flowers called Kebun Komuniti Hartamas (KKH). It was build by like-minded neighbours in August 2020 (talks were held since 2018) and has now evolved into a community-centered green space.
The garden is made by the community for the community, with a mission to help those less fortunate, while spreading awareness and imparting knowledge on gardening. Thriving under the TNB high wires behind Damansara Heights, the garden boasts more than 50 varieties of plants.
A proud harvest
Between January and September this year, the total harvest of fruits and vegetables amounted to an estimated 270 kg. Due to an abundant harvest of birds-eye chilies (cili padi) this year, KKH has produced its own sambal (chili paste) to preserve the chili and obtain additional donations.
All proceeds were directed to KKH with a portion given to one of the volunteer’s domestic helpers who made the sambal, thereby supporting her financially as well. Harvest is shared among neighbours in exchange for cash donations, with a portion going to the less fortunate living in the area.
Our fruits, veggies and flowers
As of September 2022, some of the plants growing in the garden are:
- Fruits: mulberry, limau kasturi, kaffir lime, lemon, banana, sugar cane, rock melon, pineapple, papaya, strawberries, figs.
- Vegetables: eggplant, okra, cucumber, long bean, 4 angle bean, pandan, tomato, cili padi.
- Herbs: lemongrass, turmeric, ginger, ulam raja, sabah snake grass, Thai basil, lemon basil, Indian borage, variegated borage, garlic chives, pegaga, celtus, saw tooth coriander.
- Flowers: brides tears, duranta, sunflower, bleeding heart vine, Japanese roses, hydrangeas, succulents, blue pea, marigold.
The garden also offers a unique service for the community. It has a compost area where neighbours are encouraged to drop off their kitchen waste any day and time (no animal products, though they will accept eggshells gladly). One of the volunteers would drop off bins of nitrogen-rich used coffee grounds to add to the compost mix, while DBKL drops off bags of old leaves swept from roadside pavements. This mixture of kitchen waste, old leaves and used coffee grounds is layered and left to ‘cook’ for 8-12 weeks. The end product is then sieved and generously applied onto the many plants and 32 raised beds in KKH, or given to neighbours, by way of donations, to use at home.
Would you like to be involved?
Every Saturday morning, some 5-10 neighbours can be seen pitching in to weed, sow, clean, dig, harvest and prune the 0.5 acre garden area. Bigger and more laborious projects like digging could require up to 20 volunteers at once.
One neighbour is currently meeting the garden’s water needs via a pipe pulled from his house across the road. This has saved the garden numerous times, especially throughout the hot and dry months. KKH volunteers are doing their best to harvest rainwater and are continuously looking at better and more efficient ways for the garden to be self-sufficient with its water needs.
If anyone out there would like to help with this rainwater harvesting project or Saturday harvesting, or if you would like to join the WhatsApp group, please email us here.
There are also plans to start a mid-week morning harvesting day of produce, as well as organise more workshops and kids’ events!
The garden is open daily and is community inclusive. We welcome any type of assistance from all walks of life. Please visit our IG or Facebook for updates, or to sign up for any upcoming workshops.
Would you like to build a mini-version of an edible garden? Have a look here at our article with guidelines!