Finding the Space

Not all of us are lucky enough to have our own gardens at home especially living in the centre of Manchester.

So what do you do to get a bit of nature in your life?

The great thing in Greater Manchester is the open spaces you have, Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens right in the centre of the city and many parks around the city which we reveal in a later article on page 27. But what do you do if you want something for yourself?

If you only want a little greenery in your life then try putting a flower pot on your window or some nice plants around your home. If like some, you cannot keep anything alive for longer than a few days, there are many plastic options that look real but just need a clean now and again. But what if that’s not enough?

Well in 2014 there was a project called the ‘Plot Project Manchester’. This was a scheme where you could rent the space for yourself or for you and some friends to experience some time in a garden. On-demand garden it says on their website. But we have heard nothing on twitter or Instagram since last year. This is a real shame as it seemed like a great idea for those caught up in the concrete jungle.

So what else is available?

Well on further investigation there are lots of options but one that really stood out to us was ‘Sow the City’ who aim to help people grow their own food in spaces available around the city and they have an event about twice a year where you can go to different locations around the city and see what it’s all about.

They have many projects going on so why not get involved and get healthy while experiencing the outdoors while in the city.

These are just a few examples of group’s set up in the city to bring gardening and garden experiences to the urban area.

If you are lucky enough to have a garden, even a small one in the city, then there are lots of great places to get inspiration and ideas from all around the city. Even yard spaces and rooftops can be made into a garden area to give you that perfect spot to unwind.

But if you do not want to stay in the city centre there are places around Greater Manchester as well as great links to many areas. Our offices are on the gateway to the Pennines and a 15 minute train ride from the city centre which just goes to show, you are never more than 15 minutes from some green outdoor space.

What’s been green in Manchester?

If you were lucky enough to experience the ‘Dig the City festival’ this year you would have seen how green Manchester really is with the UK’s biggest urban garden festival featuring gardens galore and pop-up picnics there was lots to see. This is sure to return next year even bigger and better than before.

Dig the City was spreading the flower power, giving away 1000 free packets of seeds to create a new garden in the heart of the city to celebrate the return of the festival. With an average of 500 seeds in every packet, this means at least half a million seeds will be given to gardeners across Manchester.

Sarah Raven said “Dig the City is a fantastic summer festival, and I love the idea of a garden filled with flowers grown by a thousand locals. We’re giving away a mixture of cornflowers, poppies, lace flowers and cosmos, so the garden will be wonderfully bright and colourful.”

So next year keep an eye out.

But to get more ideas why not visit a few of the websites we have mentioned.

By Paul Turner   -   05-09-2015

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