Native Nursery + Flowers: Mopoke The Mint

Rebecca Varidel
27th Jan 2023

The Mint Pop-up Native Garden and Nursery

This February, for the first time, The Mint will be transformed into a native garden, showcasing local plants and flowers as they were on Garigal (Gadigal) land. The weekend of 4 February as part of Mopoke will be filled with yarns about Australia’s native plants.

BUSH TO BOWL - First Nations culture, plants, food, and heritage

Bush to Bowl is a 100% Aboriginal owned social enterprise that aims to create spaces where families and community members can engage with Australia’s native plants and connect to traditional Aboriginal knowledge and culture, to Country and traditional Australian foodways.

Native Australian plants have long been used by First Nations people for a wide range of purposes. This Summer at The Sydney Mint, learn more about First Nations culture, food and heritage from the multiple workshops and talks organised by Bush to Bowl.

Bushtucker introduction workshop
Participants will gain an introduction to traditional Aboriginal plant foods/bushtucker by learning about the vast amount of native edible foods including rhizomes, legumes, grains and spices.

Bushtucker cooking demonstration
This experience (with tasting!) will focus on exploring a range of traditional Aboriginal plant foods/bushtucker whilst observing a demonstration of how they can be cooked in both savoury and sweet dishes. Are you ready to find out about traditional Australian cooking techniques?

WORKSHOPS & DEMONSTRATIONS with Cecile Keogh and Bess Scott

Ready to unleash your creative side? The Mint’s native garden will offer exciting and ticketed workshops and demonstrations with floral artists and experts.

Create memories and take part in a fun and interactive floral demonstration with Cecile Keogh. The 2-hour demo will include tips on flower care, elements of design and how to develop a floral installation. You are invited to participate, get hands-on and ask questions.

Bess Scott, a famous Paddington based florist and expert in native flowers, will offer two hands-on workshops: Fresh Native Flower Arranging workshop: Using seasonal Australian native flowers, participants can expect to play with a colourful and diverse range of unique elements to create their own native floral arrangement to take home. Dried Native Flower Arranging workshop: Allowing participants to engage with a truly special feature of Australian flora, dry flowers. Experience the longevity of their beauty, even after harvest.

FLORAL ART EXHIBITION – 3-metre-tall giant owl floral sculpture & human sized flower figures

Floral artist Cecile Keogh will create a giant owl using a mix of native flowers and plants. The impressive floral artwork will glow in the dark at night, while during the day, it will be The Mint’s guardian as it perches itself on the surrounding lawns.

Artist Tatiana Bovlova will be creating life-sized silhouettes made of flowers standing or sitting alone. The art intends to ponder the loneliness that we all feel sometimes, especially at night.

“It’s essential to understand the importance of self-love & remembering that nothing lasts forever. However, when the sun rises each morning, flowers will be nourished & bloom again and we, as humans, have the power to grow ourselves to become strong and beautiful individuals”, she says.

Even though entry to the Festival is free, some workshops and activities are ticketed and will have limited capacity. Don’t forget to book your spot at