Another glorious day of Sunshine today and a very interesting conversation about Gardening, world peace and community cohesion with a Muslim taxi driver who took to me up to Breightmet UCAN centre where the project is based.
Its been a mixed bag of work today consisting of planting fruit trees and fruit bushes at different locations around the estate, followed by a very fruitful meeting about a community kitchen and cooking classes, and a catch up with the Red Lane community allotment folk. But lets go back to the start of the day, first port of call was at Martins house where I planted a fruit tree and discussed the arrangement and layout of his growing area, as a quick sideline one of the interesting challenges of this project is accommodating the many varied sizes and shapes of peoples gardens, for example Martin is doing the bulk of his growing in raised beds on his tarmac drive, where as others have metre wide strips of growing areas that run the length of the garden with a car parking area in the middle, and others have conventional type garden layouts with grassed areas on either side of the path that leads up to the front door.
After visiting Martins I spent some with Chris planting fruit bushes in his front garden, I may have mentioned Chris in earlier posts, last year he gave away bags of food that he had grown in his raised beds to people on his estate who had nothing, after speaking to him today, he showed a load of bow and arrow sets that he had made with his son and some of the younger lads off the estate on his day off work, there are still some good people who shine in this greedy and selfish world! After Chris’s I managed to dig in another four fruit trees at different addresses across New Lane and Padbury.
This year there has been a high level of enthusiasm where food growing is concerned on the estate in Breightmet, last week I was approached by one of last years growers who is hoping to continue this season, and whilst I was out and about planting fruit trees today I was approached by two Mums on the way home from picking their kids up from School, and was also approached by a family earlier today who already have gardening and growing experience under their belts, they had all heard about the food growing project on the estate via the old school human internet ‘Word of Mouth’ and were interested in joining in and converting their gardens into productive food growing areas.