When Braidwood garlic grower Gilles Bonin injured his spine in a rock climbing accident, he thought this year's crop wouldn't go ahead. He could never have predicted the community would band together to help out.
On February 8, 2021 Mr Bonin fell five metres and hit a rock while climbing at Tianjara Falls. After a dramatic rescue and more than five hours surgery for a fractured vertebra, he was taken to the University of Canberra Hospital.
When word of Mr Bonin's situation spread - friends, family, fellow garlic growers and strangers leapt into action.
Mr Bonin's wife Victoria Clutterbuck said friends had been busy preparing the paddocks and "wrestling with the old tractor" for the past two weeks.
On March 27 more than 25 people gathered at Frog's End farm. The volunteers worked hard to crack the garlic, plant and mulch. Others cooked and provided tea, coffee, cake and lunch.
While Mr Bonnin couldn't plant the crop himself, he was granted day leave from the hospital to be part of the operation.
Mrs Clutterbuck said if it wasn't for the volunteers the farm would have went without a crop this year.
"It means we'll have income this year," she said.
"It's so fabulous, we are so grateful.
"I think Braidwood is a fabulous community, they don't let people fall by the wayside."
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