Welcome

The new year of 2022 has brought many changes with it, the least of which is a change of leadership at Greenlife Industry Australia (GIA). Hort Journal would like to welcome GIA’s new Chief Executive Officer Joanna Cave. Joanna comes to the role with a wealth of experience as a CEO of a variety of peak bodies, membership organisations and not-for-profit associations, both in the United Kingdom and in Australia. What’s more, she also has a background as a horticulturist and a landscape designer. Joanna’s broad experience will no doubt be appreciated by the broader nursery industry. Hort Journal has always worked closely with our industry bodies, and we hope to continue to do so under Joanna’s leadership. You can read more about Joanna’s background on the Greenlife Industry Australia website.

I would also like to welcome to the world, Dan Austin’s new addition to his family. Dan and his wife Auria recently welcomed a beautiful little girl, Eliana Lea. Mum and baby are doing well and Dan is enjoying his new role as a father enormously. He still managed to get his article in on time. What a guy! We send our very best wishes to them all.

Dan has been writing for Hort Journal for many years, representing the International Plant Propagators Society. His horticultural knowledge and experience are exceptional, and it’s nice to know that his broad knowledge is being passed on to TAFE students in South Australia. Dan is also the author of a recent book, Off the Garden Path: Green wonders of the world,which you can see on the Hort Journal Australia website.

Therapeutic Horticulture has been getting a good run recently in the media. Dr Kate Neale and the Australian Institute of Horticulture’s National President, Michael Casey, have written many articles for Hort Journal about the horticultural therapy work they have both done in the field of education. This is certainly an area of horticulture that is growing and what better way to market our plants, than educating students and the public about the many benefits of greenlife. There are courses available online if you choose to build on our own knowledge.

Now that schools, in most states, are almost getting back to normal, I am sure the many of you who have been home-schooling will breathe a sigh of relief, assuming we don’t go backwards with restrictions! Some parents I have spoken with over the past two years said they would not have managed so well if it wasn’t for their gardens. Being able to take the children outside for their breaks or in some cases have an outdoor makeshift classroom, has been integral in staying focussed and sane.

I guess if you live in an apartment, it would be a challenge, and this is where our parks and gardens are so valuable. Many of my own local parks have had facelifts and I suppose during these last two years, these facilities have been well utilised. Perhaps we should take the time to let our government representatives know how much we appreciate the work being done.

Have a good month. Karen Smith and your Hort Journal Team

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