Ellen Schindler has lived and gardened in Auckland since 2003. She's a teacher by trade and has taught organic horticulture and gardening classes in recent years under her business name Distinct - Eatscapes. Having a big garden at home, she is committed to producing as much food from her property as possible, her garden was open for several Heroic Garden Festivals as the first productive garden. Ellen's gardening helpers are several beehives for pollination and a few chooks to provide fertiliser and eat all the snails and critters she and her friends find in their gardens.
Ellen's favourite food plants and trees are from South America, she has a little collection of fruit trees and vegetables from there and always keen to add more. She likes to observe what our diverse ethnic groups in Auckland plant and eat and then try these interesting crops that are unbeknown to most Western people.
She has co-ordinated several community gardens and fruit tree orchards in the western city fringe suburbs of Sandringham and Pt Chevalier and she is passionate about foraging food from all sources, be it from the spray-free wild/public places or knocking on people’s doors asking for their under-utilised abundance (and giving back a jar of what she makes from it). She is a keen member of her local Eco-Neighbourhood bee group and they have taken to building our own hive-ware as a response to increasing prices and decreasing quality of materials - best, it’s lots of fun, learnings and good social company.
She is looking forward to finding out how she can involve herself more in the For The Love Of Bees projects