We have begun creating a Wellbeing Forest Garden within the orchard at Queenswood. The next phase of its development is to showcase sustainable food production, through permaculture and forest gardening, using wildlife friendly techniques. It will provide a space for people to learn more about growing food in tune with nature, whilst enhancing the wellbeing of those volunteers involved.
We are grateful to funders who have already contributed to the initial phase: the Finnis Scott Foundation; Edward Cadbury Foundation; the Southall Trust and the Herefordshire Foundation. Applewood Permaculture have also offered advice on designing the garden and how to incorporate sustainable horticulture techniques. We have worked with MIND and HVOSS who have referred volunteers and we are hoping to work in partnership with other organisations to become a showcase Forest Garden within Herefordshire.
Forest Gardening is a way of producing food and other useful plants, by copying the natural processes of a forest – growing plants at different levels: in the canopy (tree fruit), shrub level (nuts and soft fruit) and on ground level (herbs and other crops). Forests are the most stable and sustainable type of ecosystem in our climate. We will offer volunteers the opportunity to learn different horticultural techniques via practical work days and workshops throughout the year as well as using the space for schools and community education events.
In March 2020, the garden featured on BBC Countryfile! Presenter Ellie Harrison joined in with volunteers to do some planting and spoke with Engagement Officer Karen Roberts!
Many thanks to all the funders who have supported this project so far:
The National Lottery Heritage Fund
We would love to hear from anyone wanting to get involved in the project. Working outdoors in green spaces can be beneficial for both physical and mental wellbeing.