Fresh Growing Success for Allotment Clients

Posted on the 24th February 2021

Clients down at the Pure allotment have been growing-on these fab purple sprouting broccoli plants over  winter.  The brassicas have put on much more bulk since the  photo was taken and are now coming up for harvest. What a lovely, tasty treat!

The allotment is all about mastering the skills to grow plants for the plate. It has been a cold winter but the team has used a good old gardening trick to keep their greenhouse seedlings cosy and warm. They constructed their own sturdy “hot bed”.

Horse Muck and Magic

To many,  it is just horse muck. But to little seeds the filling of this hot bed it is the perfect combination of underfloor heating and a deluxe duvet. Lovely.

The horse manure was kindly donated by a local  riding stables just across the road. With no transport costs or carbon miles it is as environmentally friendly as you could wish.

Work on the bed began last year when the clients built its wooden frame inside the greenhouse. This was then filled with barrow laods of manure which have been breaking down nicely over the winter, emitting heat in the process, keeping the green house surprisingly cosy.

As you can see, radishes loved it. In the recent frosts, temperatures inside were still warm enough for the leek and cauliflower seedlings in seed trays to flourish.

Nothing Wasted

The hot bed for seedlings will also feed crops later in the year. Ironically it will be chillies  in the hot bed come summer, along with tomatoes and basil. In autumn the old manure will be used as mulch on the external beds and fresh supplies brought in for the next hot bed season.

Working on the allotment gives clients both horticulture skills and a lot of insight into where their food comes from. When one client heard we we would be growing tomatoes, he was adamant he didn't like them. However he conceded that he likes tomao ketchup, pizza, bolognese and lots of other foods that contain them.
Everyone enjoys being here and even if it is rainy we are nicely sheltered in our big shed where we can plan successional sowing.

Dave Wall - Pure Innovations

Horticulture Qualifications

Some clients at the allotment are also working towards  City and Guilds Horticulture qualifications led by tutors from Oldham College. You can read about Gerard and Jamie’s Blooming Brilliant Success here.

Beyond the green house are  veg beds that will be filling up with the plants nurtured in the greenhouse.The kale is already shooting up and carrots and beans will be soon be sown.

We’ll be sure to keep you posted on future harvests at this  flourishing project in Dunwood Country Park. Do walk over to take a look if you are ever  at Dunwood Park Cafe, also run by Pure Innovations.

Join Us!

The allotment project is part of our alternative day services offer for people with a learning difficulty, disability or autism. It’s great for  people who love being in the fresh air and who enjoy nature.

If you think it could be right for you or someone you know, please contact Kath Brooks on 07872 423212 or by email at . She’d love to hear from you.

Alternatively, you can use our Contact Form.

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