Georgiadis talks about the “Power of Pollination” in Tin Can Bay

ABC personality, Costa Georgiadis will be buzzing to reconnect with locals and groups again, like Cooloola City Farm

ABC personality, Costa Georgiadis will be buzzing to reconnect with locals and groups again, like Cooloola City Farm

Michelle Gilmore 

Luckily for us on the Cooloola Coast, Costa Georgiadis, host of ABC’s Gardening Australia is nephew to Tin Can Bay Fishing Club stalwarts, Jim and Debbie George. Which meant I was lucky enough to interview Costa in the lead up to his Tin Can Bay fundraiser and learn about his Logie, gardening during COVID, his grandad’s watermelons – and what keeps bringing him back here! 

Costa Georgiadis, the dynamic, award-winning host of ABC Gardening Australia is here on July 13 to talk about the power of pollination.

But it is not just about how gardening for our birds, bees and butterflies is everyone’s business – Costa is here to talk about pollination of plants and ideas, and creating them!

“Being a white knight, flying into town is one thing,” says Costa, but his aim is “returning and connecting and understanding and building relationships – elevating the understanding of little things and big things.”

Costa’s belief is that the solutions to big problems are simple. He compares it to the show, Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds – and how rebuilding connections in this intergenerational experiment had so many positive outcomes, including improved mental health, mobility, combating isolation and giving a sense of purpose.

He believes gardening holds the key to solving a multitude of modern world problems.

Grateful for the platform he has, and everyone who voted to help him and ABC’s Gardening Australia win two Logies in 2019 – Best Lifestyle Program and Best Presenter, he says: “People connect a face to story and narrative. When we tell stories, it gets it out there and turns up the volume.”

He is certainly chuffed they can amplify positive messages about gardening, horticulture and sustainability.

“Covid meant people had this opportunity of a lifetime to journey with their garden. There was so much publicity getting around; Covid hatched gardening – gradually it has a fantastic spotlight.

“We need to take it ‘next level’ – how can we explore and network, to incubate their success to become something people do all the time – from temporary into hardwiring.”

He emphasises, “Jim’s dad, my grandfather, grew watermelons the size of a small child! They had to pick them together – they had wonderful stories!

“What we do and how we influence our generation, plays out in the next generation.

“Our grandparents grew so much of their own food. But it is not about self sufficiency.”

Costa’s aim is to encourage people to grow some of our food, combined with community connection and sharing.

“Gardening is not intimidating. If you talk about climate change it is polarising, people get into corners.”

Costa says if you talk about your carrots or tomatoes, it lifts barriers and brings people together.

Food security, isolation, mental health, malnutrition, sustainability, giving a sense of purpose and building community – he says are all things gardening can address.

Native bee winner

Rainbow Beach State School has received a Woolworths Junior Landcare grant for $500 to purchase a native bee hive.

This year’s grants also placed an emphasis on the importance of bees and pollinators in the environment to support the conservation of Australia’s bee population.

The garden is undergoing a total upgrade with new beds being installed and the old beds being re-lined and repositioned behind the Prep room.

“There’s a big difference between hope and action! That draws me back here – it is my 10th year at Queensland Garden Expo – with five or six times on the Cooloola Coast.

“Doing things together – the more I see what is working, now more than ever – do together, share and solve problems.”

On a side note, Costa also likes visiting his aunt and uncle’s “heaven on earth”!

“For an outsider, the whole place is fantastic – a Rainbow Beach walk or wetlands, out on the water – I don’t need to tell you locals, this is paradise!

“Don’t tell too many people – you got it all: landscape, temperature, community and you live in wild nature!”

So bring your questions and ears to the Tin Can Can Bay Complex, 9.30am on July 13! There’s a Quilting Club morning tea, lucky door prize and raffle at only $15 per person, and bookings are essential – call 0437 242 171. You might even see a Logie!

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