Upcoming Event: Fallowfield Secret Garden U-design day, 2nd June

Mark Roberts (as opposed to MCFly cartoonist Marc Roberts!) answers some questions about the Fallowfield Secret Garden

What is the ‘Secret Garden’?
The Fallowfield Secret Garden is the Fallowfield resident’s garden, it’s not an allotment.
How did the idea emerge?
It’s a secret!
What has been the biggest challenge in making it happen (so far)
‘Challenge’ wouldn’t describe any of our experiences so far. This is down to two things. First is probably because witnessing the Secret Garden develop is deeply motivational for volunteers. Second, because the problem is the solution. That’s one of the Principles of Permaculture which guide all decisions made at the Secret Garden. Why would you dig out tree stumps? Make benched stands out of them instead. You have to appreciate the cycles of nature when it comes to growing, for example, by feeding not only the plant but the soil, and orientating your plot to the sun. These principles are designed to make life easy, you want to be able to enjoy nature too.
What advice would you give yourself, if you could send a message back three months?
Complete grant forms early. And don’t be afraid to delegate tasks. People will then take pride in their Secret Garden. We are expecting the project to keep on snowballing this way.
What happens next?
Next is a great question. We are custom building a shed/workspace/office. It’s important to have a base of operations and will speed up all things clerical massively. But we’re taking our time with this one, it’s going to be a quality product. Then we’re holding our first event: uDesign. It’s a carpentry workshop (2nd of June), followed by lunch and an on-site practical with our planned projects and individual ideas are welcome. We have huge stacks of wood to work from. It’s also going to be a fun day. All free of course. The idea behind this is very much about the earlier point. To encourage a person’s pride in their creation is a big part of fostering the communities sense of ownership. It also gets the work done!
How can people get involved?
People can get involved by contacting Project Manager Mark Roberts. 07907167085 and . It’s totally non-exclusive.
Anything else you’d like to say.
I have previously written a more comprehensive article: http://www.permanentculturenow.com/fallowfield-secret-garden-project/
and a blog: www.fallowfieldsecretgarden.wordpress.com. Await a small documentary in a few weeks too.


About manchesterclimatemonthly

Was print format from 2012 to 13. Now web only. All things climate and resilience in (Greater) Manchester.
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