A VOLUNTEER community gardening group is seeking talks with Sutherland Shire Council after one of their community gardens was razed by mistake last week.
The Bewilderers, a group of four volunteers, have worked on community gardens around the shire for five years.
Last week the council accidentally removed half of a community garden planted by them at the corner of President Avenue and Eton Street, Sutherland.
Bewilderers member Bob Crombie, an environmental manager, said there was a complaint from the public about visibility at the intersection because of a couple of plants that were about 60 to 70 centimetres tall.
"We would have happily removed these plants ourselves," he said.
The Bewilderers aim to enhance public spaces in urban areas.
"We want the gardens to be beautiful and attract wildlife," Mr Crombie said.
"A lot of people in units don't have a garden so we see it as a benefit for them.
"We have to meet a lot of council's environmental criteria and we buy our own plants, donate our time and operate at no cost to the council.
The Bewilderers are seeking to formalise their planting and establish a framework for future projects.
They understand there are safety concerns but said these had been successfully sorted out with the volunteer bush regeneration program.
A council spokeswoman said while Sutherland Shire Council appreciated the good intentions of Mr Crombie and his group in their planting beside roadways in Sutherland, the council supported community planting in more appropriate areas using native species.
"Council's Bushcare members are trained and supported to carry out volunteer work in Sutherland Shire and Mr Crombie and his group are invited to join this program," she said.
"There are safety issues surrounding community members taking it upon themselves to garden on council land adjacent to busy thoroughfares.
"Moreover, the council is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in the upgrading and re-vegetation of the Sutherland shopping centre and is planting natives at the corner of Eton Street and President Avenue.
"This garden will require very little maintenance while being aesthetically pleasing and low to the ground."
Should the Bewilderers continue planting their garden?