District Docklands Children’s Community Garden 13

District Docklands Kids Garden Melbourne

The District Docklands Children’s Garden

District Docklands (formerly known as the Harbour Town precinct) has created a new community garden. Leaf, Root & Fruit is proud to work with the District Docklands team and Development Victoria to design and implement a productive, aesthetic and exciting space for children and their families enjoyment.


Corner of Waterfront Way and Little Docklands Drive.

Docklands, Victoria 3008.

Image Gallery of District Docklands Children’s Garden

We have transfored the site which was formerly an industrial wasteland, covered in weeds and rubble. The garden is located on the corner of Waterfront Way and Little Docklands Drive.

District Docklands Community Garden “Before Shots”


Our goal statement for the project is:

“A beautiful and engaging place for the community to share and which creates a sense of belonging. It attracts visitors to the centre and is financially and environmentally sustainable”.

The design phase went through several stages and involved working with multiple stakeholders. The full site analysis and design document totaled over 40 pages. You can download a three page summary PDF version of the design by clicking on the image below.

District Docklands Community Garden Design

Click on the design image to download a three page PDF summary of the final design.

The final design incorporates three shipping containers. These are used as windbreak and storage spaces. The shipping container in the middle, is a side opening container and can be used as a stage. Regular events and workshops will be run in the space by District Docklands, Leaf, Root & Fruit and Blender Studios.

The existing large concreted area, is furnished with seating made from up-cycled pallets. Apple crates are planted out with edible plants and flowers.

Raised wicking beds have been installed along the north boundary to act as a barrier to stop children running out onto the road. These have been planted with an edible forest garden, full of fruit trees, shrubs and an under-story of herbs and strawberries. Children will be able to wander along and pick some tasty, fresh and healthy fruit and veggies for their lunch!

The southwest corner of the space required the import of a large quantity of clean soil. It is planted out as an ornamental forest garden. There are lots of sensory plants included in this area to encourage children to smell and touch. Flowering plants will attract lots of beneficiary insects and brighten up the garden. The southern boundary is planted with fast growing pioneer species of shrubs and trees. These shrubs, trees and vines grown over the existing cyclone fence will act as a windbreak to make the site more pleasant to sit and relax in.

The grand opening of the space will occur on Saturday 18th November 2017 with some Children’s Street Art Workshops. On Sunday the 19th November we will be running some Gardening Workshops for Children.

Image Gallery of District Docklands Project Implementation

The space is to be an evolving ecosystem. We hope to add further features and functionality to the landscape as budget, time and resources are made available to us. We’ll be working with District Docklands to run regular workshops and events in the space. Sign up to our newsletter to be kept informed of upcoming events.

Have you visited the District Docklands Community Garden for Children? What did you think? Please any feedback you may have in the comments section below.

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13 thoughts on “District Docklands Children’s Community Garden

  • Faye

    Can local residents get involved in helping to maintain the garden space? Maybe some working bee events that local folks and families can help out with? I’m also interested in the potential of a compost ingredient donation facility that would could hold huge environmental benefits for the community. Since I have less capacity to successfully grow on our fairly small and extremely shaded local balcony I’m keen to assist with our community gardens!

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Faye,

      Thanks for getting in touch. The garden was (and I believe still is) planned to actively involve the community. The sapce is now being maintained by The District Docklands Centre Management. Please get in touch with them to find out more about getting involved (or alternatively, just head down there and start gardening!)

      I hope that you enjoy the space as much as we enjoyed creating it!


      • Faye

        Hi Duncan, Thanks for getting back to me. I shall contact the District management to see what they have planned. Community gardening has potential to really play a huge part in cities of the future.
        I have certainly been enjoying the space! Good luck with your future projects.
        Best regards,


      • Natalie

        Hi there we would like to get in contact with whoever runs this space. We live near and we wanting to contribute to the gardening and upkeep it looks pretty neglected at the moment and we would love to help out. Also were wondering if there were a compost that we could add our scraps too

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Natalie,

          Thanks for getting in touch. We are no longer involved with the community garden at the Docklands and we’re not aware of any community activity going on in the space. I’d suggest you get in contact with The District Centre Management to see how you can get involved. If anything comes of it, please let us know so that we can promote it on this page and our socials. We would love to see it thriving once again.

          Good Luck & Happy Gardening!

  • Owen Hyde

    I walk past on my way to Costco weekly and find the site a little unloved, happy to do some wedding if not treading on toes?
    There are signs that someone has been there recently but it obviously needs more help.

    Owen Hyde

    Morgan Place

    457 Flinders LAne.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Owen,

      Glad you’ve been getting involved in this community garden with a bit of weeding. We no longer have much to do with this garden. Instead we’ve been directing those interested to contact the customer service team at The District Shopping Centre. They are responsible for it.

      Happy Gardening!

    • Anne-Marie

      Hey Owen and others
      discovered this today on a bike ride. There are a lot of nice plants and herbs in the garden and they will probably come back with some TLC – weeding pruning and some plant food. I’m happy to help out to restore this community garden as it’s such a shame to see all the pants die and the hard work go to waste. I’m heading down there now with some secatuers.

  • Keryn Waters

    This garden is now so dilapidated. The plants are a mess, there’s a small shelter which is now blown on its side. It genuinely looks like the Bronx. If a small group are interested I would love to get it in order. I don’t live in Docklands but I work over the road and walk past it every day. Every day it gets worse

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Keryn,

      I’m so disappointed to read this. We put so much time and energy into designing and creating the space which is now managed by The District Shopping Centre. I suppose COVID and a lack of prioritisation has had an impact on the upkeep of the garden.

      Please get in touch with Customer Service team at The District to see if there are others willing to help you tidy it up.

      Happy Gardening!