At the beginning of July this year, Carole and Dee traveled to London’s Hampton Court to showcase a small piece of the hill in a 3 x 3 metre Community Allotment. We received four flowers in the ‘Plant Village Award’, awarded by Raymond Blanc, the famous French chef patissier, which celebrated our ability to hide very edible plants in a very ornamental garden!
As we are producers for local businesses and many top London chefs supplying unusual heritage varieties of vegetables, herbs and salad for their kitchens, it made sense to accompany Merlin Johnson’s Wild Garden Banquet to show just what we can produce at community level.
Our plot showcased companion planting of edibles and ornamentals; a place for the senses and a rich tapestry for wildlife. The features of our garden were green woodworking and willow work by our tutors Sean Hellman and Vivienne Turner, which highlighted our permanent installation of teacher and child in the therapeutic garden.
Our design statement:
1. The gardens were designed as a place of rest, reflection and learning for all, building resilience by working with nature.
2. The school offers the ‘re-engage, re-inspire programme’, working with young people with complex, additional needs and trauma. Their education, family life, emotional wellbeing, behaviour and independent skills are positively impacted by this programme.
3. The school grows produce for chefs; putting the odd, bizarre, nutritious and delicious into the kitchen.
Husbandry means; “taking care of the boundaries of that which you are responsible for, and everything within it”.
Perhaps we will attend again next year, but for now we’re enjoying our achievement and look forward to taking part in garden shows again in the future.