gift garden

Beggars Lane Allotments, Leek, Staffordshire Moorlands

Vision

GROW OBSERVE RECOVER complex and beautiful living systems in a healthy, compassionate community.

Purpose

Gift garden- GROW is the development and sustained management of an agroecology/ permaculture food production system to support local people in poverty and economic crisis.

Gift garden- OBSERVE is the Weather Station Project, an essential climate data recording point and educational resource.

Gift garden- RECOVER is EarthBench, a space outside to meet for therapeutic sessions, GP and mental health services, referrals or counselling.

Mycorrhixal fungi with captionOne key step is to phase in electric power tools as alternatives to fossil fuel powered ones or even give some up. The rotovator, for example, has no place in a climate-friendly garden, which is a relief to many of us and our backs!

Pesticides can also go as they are energy-intensive to produce, particularly glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup; the organic movement advises on nature-based alternatives. The same goes for artificial NPK fertilisers, especially in the case of nitrogen, whose production is also extremely energy-intensive.

Roaches Sphagnum Moss

Last spring the Nature group helped Staffordshire Wildlife Trust and the South-West Peak volunteers with Sphagnum moss planting at sites on the Roaches that had been badly burned a couple of years ago.  We were delighted this autumn when Jon Rowe, the SWT Roaches warden, sent us this photo of successfully regenerating moss, along with the news that 60% of the plug plants had survived, a better rate than expected. So, many thanks and congratulations to all involved - one small step for Nature and the climate! 

Over the past few months, the Nature group have been talking about setting up market stalls to promote green manures, peat-free growing, etc.

Under our recently stated aim of working with local conservation organisations, we are happy to spread the word about Severn Trent’s Great Big Nature Boost!  The plan is to invite those of our supporters who are keen to take part in practical conservation work to join in as volunteers on their projects.  When the dates for their work programme become available we'll put them on our calendar, so that you can contact us about those events you want to take part in. 

"Introducing Severn-Trent's biggest ever nature project across the region

  • Planting 1.3 million trees,
  • Reviving 12,000 acres of land and;
  • Restoring over 2000km of rivers.

 

What’s good for nature is great for your water!

By caring for nature it benefits your water too, because when we improve the health of our region’s woods, soils, rivers and wetlands, we’re also investing in natural water filters to clean and care for your water – making It more wonderful than ever. And by making your water purer, it also means we need to use less energy and less chemicals to treat and clean it too, helping to keep your bills low.

Projects

We’re going to continue to work with some of the most distinguished environmental partners to deliver a range of projects to improve habitats for wildlife. For example:

RSPB - working with land owners across the South West Peaks to create new habitats for wading birds.

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust – undertaking a variety of projects over the next 2-3years, including creating by-passes around redundant weirs to open up fish passage, and enhancing habitats for the endangered native white claw crayfish."

 

Brough Park Site September 2020

Councillors, officers and MCA members at the Brough Park site visit - physically distanced of course!

As any gardener knows, allowing something to grow without careful pruning can result in a straggly and unhappy looking plant; the same could be said of groups – however much enthusiasm we start off with, branching off in too many directions might mean that we end up with not enough energy…

So with that in mind, the Nature group decided to focus its efforts on developing strong roots in three main areas for the year ahead:

Creating a regularly updated online resource on the MCA website...