Community garden re-opens


Spring has sprung in the community garden at the end of Love Lane which is a fantastic resource for Rye residents which can be used in many ways. So, even if you don’t fancy gardening, please read on – you may be able to enjoy it in some other way.

Since lockdown restrictions have been eased, a small group has been meeting up every Saturday between 10am and 12 noon and, as the garden is pretty big, it’s very easy to distance there.

If more than six people turn up, we make sure that we have a clear separation between groups, but in reality the nature of the garden is that households aren’t close to others anyway and people who are still trying to be ultra cautious are likely to find it a reassuringly safe space.

In these Saturday sessions we are doing a variety of tasks. We have cleared out some of the old beds from last year and have planted onions, potatoes, carrots, parsnips, peas, broad beans and garlic. We also have a variety of companion plants, such as marigolds, lavender and sage, which deter predators from eating the seedlings (we hope).

Blooming sunflowers on their way 

We have planted a great variety of fruit trees, including cherry, plum and many others and  Rye Chamber of Commerce kindly gave us some sunflower seeds which we have planted around the entrance. We also have rhubarb, raspberries, bay and hopefully giant pumpkins on the way. We have laid down a new woodchip path and created an elaborate wooden structure to encourage climbing plants.

An exciting find inside the shed

As well as planting, there is constant weeding and watering to be done. However if anyone fancies just coming to the garden and chilling for a bit, there is a sheltered table and chairs outside for that very purpose.  This might suit someone who perhaps can’t walk too far, but would like to get out in the open air for a bit and have a chat. And we are hoping this year to be able to supply the Food Bank with some fresh produce from the garden.

Everyone is welcome to come along on Saturday mornings. And of course if a group of people prefer another time or day, there is nothing to stop them organising that as well. It quite fun to be with other people, particularly after the last year, but anyone can use the garden, so if you fancy popping down on your own with a book, a flask or a friend, or all of the above, you are welcome.

We post updates on Facebook and we also have a WhatsApp group that you can join. We suggest that you don’t bother to join the WhatsApp group unless you plan to get involved in regular gardening sessions as we exchange quite a few messages about for instance, who is doing the watering, which may be quite irritating to people who are not interested in this level of detail.  We also have an email address which is not monitored 24/7.

This chap is one of the keenest attendees at the gardening sessions

One thing we are planning to discuss at our next session (May 1) is seeds. We have quite a lot of leftover seeds in the shed which may or may not be viable.

But we are also likely to have new seeds left over and we have also been contacted by other people saying they have excess supplies this year to swap and share – and this is not surprising. If someone wants to grow a few carrots for instance, a full packet of seeds may well be far more than they need.

Don’t hesitate to come along to check the garden out. We would love to see you.  Again, the regular sessions are Saturdays, 10am until 12 noon. We aim to do this every week unless the weather is appalling. See you soon!

Image Credits: Seana Lanigan .

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