Woodside unveils new gardens on its birthday

In the new Woodside flower garden, from left, are staff Quinton Hofneester, Abdul Brown, Melanie Brand, Mymoena Fredericks, Nkosikhaya Xuba and guest Reverend Richard Martin.

Woodside Special Care Centre celebrated its 45th anniversary on Saturday by unveiling a new flower garden and a vegetable garden.

The home cares for intellectually disabled adults and children as well as people with reduced mobility

More than 50 people were at the ceremony, including ward councillor Mark Kleinschmidt and Reverend Richard Martin from the Holy Trinity Church who gave a blessing.

The flower garden was made possible through National Lottery funding. It includes a paved pathway, two water fountains and an array of plants: roses, violets, purple pansies, lavender and spekboom. There are three murals by Falko One.

The wheelchair-friendly flower garden took around a month to complete and was made possible by two Maitland landscapers while Woodside employee Nkosikhaya Xuba and his brother, Lungile Xuba, who is a landscaper, helped to design it.

The vegetable garden, which took three months to complete, includes, beetroot, cabbage, spinach, green peppers, lettuce, carrots and onions and was made possible with help from the provincial Department of Agriculture.

Woodside general manager Melanie Brand said the gardens would encourage their special-needs residents to spend more time outside.

“With the colours and flowers, it allows the residents to appreciate the smell and colours and can help with their sensory stimulation.”

The vegetable garden will be a source of food for the residents and staff. “If we have extra vegetables, we will share with the community,” Ms Brand said.

The day also included a market day and Zumba dancing led by Russell Torlen.

Woodside general manager Melanie Brand and ward councillor Mark Kleinschmidt in the vegetable garden.