The garden has moved forward in leaps and bounds in the last few weeks with the underground water capture features now complete. I finally plumbed them in yesterday so we are now no longer wasting rainwater from the lean-to greenhouses. The next step will be to get some solar pumps to bring the water back out for use and this will allow us to become self-sufficient in water for the plants.
The pineapple house now has a brick retaining wall and the first half of the lattice brickwork for the manure pits has been built. We now await agreement from the council Heritage Officer to remove the old, rusty pipes before we can complete the building of the pens. This is very exciting and we hope to be able to start growing pineapples over the next year.
Shanty town is now dry and secure and will become an event/volunteer building. The next step will be to get it habitable so we are looking for volunteers with DIY skills. Please let us know if you can help.
We are awaiting delivery of about 20 Morello cherry trees and these will be planted up against the north-facing wall in the shady area of the garden. We have been preparing the beds over the last couple of months and are ready to go from the pizza oven to the retaining pillar but still have to complete this exercise to the end of the wall. We will be doing this as and when the weather permits.
The old, concrete, round feature at the top of the garden has now been clad in our spare, yellow stocks so it ties in with the well and the fern house and looks great. We hope to grow water chestnuts or water lilies in it.
Thanks to our volunteers who came to help on our first day back, 6 January. Six, hardy souls came in and worked hard all day. We had our first monthly meeting of the year where everyone was updated as to where the project was heading as well as letting everyone give us feedback on their views.
I would especially like to welcome back Frank who has joined us from Seetec who is proving to be a real asset to the volunteer team with his hard work and cheery disposition. One other major milestone is to say thanks to Mark Brookes who has been volunteering for over a year and we are very, very pleased to have him as part of the team.
Let’s hope that 2015 allows us to continue to improve all aspects of the garden and make this project a major success.