Wellsbourne Healthcare Community Interest Company

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Art at Wellsbourne Healthcare CIC

Today we had the delightful Vicky Waters, display a years photos taken of the Wellsbourne Community Garden. Her Photos are on display with us from now until 3rd October 2023.

Vicky has spent a year visiting a mixture of green spaces around Brighton and Hove, learning about them and volunteering. Taking photos of the garden each time she visited.

This collection is a beautiful insight into what our Volunteers Coordinator Lucy Mitchell & all the volunteers do in the garden throughout each season.

Here below is a little something Vicky wrote about her experience with volunteering in the garden:

Wellsbourne Community Garden is a welcoming place. Jools, Lucy and the volunteers make the garden a lovely space to learn about growing plants and caring for the soil they grow in. The benches and tables make it a nice place to sit, too. The photographs show a little bit about what’s been happening during work days and what’s been growing in the garden—from October 2022 to June 2023.

The beautiful orange flowers are dahlias—in bloom last autumn. The green fruits are tomatoes. The grasshopper sleeping in the dahlia was pretty big. The bulbs sown in November will flower in the spring. Bright Store donated some vegetables, which were chopped up and added into the compost.

Another new planter was built in February. Trees were removed from pots, to be replanted. Holes needed to be dug. Terry the Cherry tree was moved to the upper grassy triangle in March, moving in next to Wally and William the walnut trees. Netting was used to protect the growing tulips. In the spring the daffodils, tulips and narcissae put on a lovely display.

In April a space was dug at the top of the garden and planted with the first crop of new potatoes. Potatoes are an excellent first crop as they break up the soil. There will be some lovely Charlotte potatoes in the summer.

In May, a Wild Wellbeing taster session was held, with Caroline. The garden attracts quite a few snails. Some of them are put in the grey bucket. The resulting liquid is used to create healthy soil.

Jools guided volunteers through how to build rich, healthy soil in the beds. The hawthorn was in full flower. Beau found a moth pupa in the earth. The grass on the slope was a beautiful green. Rhubarb was planted in one of the beds. The herbs smelled gorgeous—at the end of the work session volunteers took some leaves home. The alliums—with flowers like pom poms—were looking good. The strawberry plants were showing their white flowers. The sun was strong enough for Jools to need the shade of a big hat. By the end of May, the potatoes were coming on. It’s tricky getting the hose to reach that far. It was easier to use the watering cans. Weeding is a job that has to be done.

Lucy brings excellent homemade cake to share during the afternoon breaks, and makes a pot of tea.

The phacelias are attractive to bees and other pollinators. This plant is often used as a green manure crop due to its ability to enrich the soil with nutrients and improve soil structure. The grass-like plant is a plantain. The tulips formed seed-pods, and the bulbs were removed. The spinach bolted—growing beyond the stage when it tastes good. The chamomile flowers were in bud and the grasses on the slope had grown long. There were beetles in the ox-eye daisies. Some of the long grass needed to be cut back—especially where it was growing around planters or crowding other plants.

In June, Lucy organised a celebratory ‘thank you’ lunch at the new, round table for the Wellsbourne volunteers. The chamomile flowers had opened. The garden tools and the shed need cleaning and

tidying every so often. The thyme and the potatoes flowered. Alliums come in ‘small’ too, which Lucy shows to the school children who visit. The alliums were finishing, so Jools removed the bulbs in order to save them. Volunteers rallied round to water the garden over a very hot and dry weekend. The large tub that previously held Terry the Cherry was filled with new compost—ready for the dahlias to go in. Beans, tomatoes and peas were planted out. The strawberries were getting big.