Tours of bush tucker garden 

BUSH tucker holds a popular place in the modern Australian vernacular.

For Aborigines, it was key to survival.

‘‘Bush tucker means everything to Aboriginal culture,’’ Bahtahbah Local Aboriginal Land Council chief executive Michael Green said.

 ‘‘It was just like a big shopping centre; only it was free and you didn’t have to line up in a checkout.’’

The land council has established a bush tucker garden at its Blacksmiths office.

Land council project officer Toby Whaleboat, in conjunction with Lake Macquarie City Council, will lead about 30 members of the public on a tour of the garden on Thursday.

Mr Whaleboat said the garden included native raspberry, geebung, native ginger and lomandra.

Bush tucker was ‘‘all natural and not processed, so it’s healthy’’, he said.

‘‘There’s a lot of ways people could add it to home-cooking recipes for different flavours, if they had the knowledge,’’ he said.

Mr Green said some Aborigines still used bush tucker, especially for making jams and spices.

Mr Whaleboat sought to show people ‘‘how Aboriginal people used natural resources’’, saying  they took ‘‘a holistic approach to the environment’’.

‘‘All the resources they needed were in the bush and they moved according to where the resources were available within their area.’’

Bush-tucker tours helped indigenous and non-indigenous people understand each other, he said.

‘‘We want to create awareness in the community about Aboriginal stewardship of the land.’’ 

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