This brief sketch of market gardening in the Braidwood goldfields highlights several aspects relevant to market gardening generally in Australia: first, the frustrating paucity of contemporary archival accounts; second, and related to the above, the importance of anecdotal evidence and the process of verification by physical survey, without which the scale and diversity of operations could only be guessed at; third, the diversity of technologies used for water management; and fourth, the ubiquitousness of Chinese market gardening.
Evidence of rural pursuits other than market gardening is more difficult to obtain.
Here several thousand Chinese men were employed in land clearing (scrub cutting and ringbarking), market gardening, and ancillary activities.
Chinese involvement in market gardening was an important activity in most areas of NSW, including the and far west.
These were also used for market gardening. (37) Family history suggests that two huts were purpose built to house market gardeners employed by Hoyling.
It is hardly surprising that the Chinese took to market gardening given their obvious skill in this enterprise and the increased demand for fresh produce to service the rapidly increasing population.
(46) So rich was its praise of Lee Hing in particular and Chinese market gardening in general that the newspaper called for the cessation of hostility towards the Chinese.
By the 1880s the importance of market gardening had superseded the mining and prospecting that continued on a reduced scale.
Market gardening provides other opportunities for exploring European-Chinese interaction after the gold rush.
The significance of Maclaren's Flat is supported by the presence of other considerable sites in the vicinity along the Loddon that also suggest large-scale market gardening by Chinese.
In such instances we are discussing ninety years of continuous market gardening.