© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

City's top community garden just keeps growing

Natasha Payne

The gardeners behind Christchurch's popular shared pantry describe why they wanted to give back and how far their garden has come.


The Peveral Street Community Garden in Riccarton was built because it was needed for the people.

Loretta Tepaa and Carmen Smith started what they described as their baby in 2013 after the earthquakes.They said many people were lost and did not know where to go for financial, social and mental aid. 

"We started because there was a need after the earthquakes and these people had nothing," Tepaa said.

So she decided to take action with her husband, and it was not long till Smith joined them.

"I'm all about the people, it's like a trade off, I get to have fellowship with all these people as well as helping them," Smith said.

The successful garden was recently named garden of the year, after the team applied as a "bit of a laugh". 

"It's also about having fun and taking nothing too seriously," Smith explained with a smile on her face. 

Since the pantry began, many people have dedicated their time to help. A tradesman built a proper pantry in place of the shed it was housed in, electrical companies provided free cabling and Bunnings helped to replant their garden after one tough season. 

They will receive their award later this week.