Creating an Environment
Over the past few years the Springvale Community Garden has risen up from the derelict state it found itself in after the closure of Rainbow Nursery in 2006 and into a productive food producing site.
While the site is primarily for growing the fruit and vegetables that are sold on via local outlets and (eventually) in our own shop it is also an environment for encouraging wildlife, supporting ecosystems, showcasing demonstration gardens and promoting community spirit.
Much of the garden is being sympathetically designed to fit in with its surroundings using local tradespeople, the hard work of its volunteer team and by recycling materials already on site and from the local area.
The rebuilding of the drystone wall is a good example of the work that has been completed at Springvale. Les Young of Hadrian’s Dry Stone Walls came to site to provide training (and supervision) to a group of volunteers who rebuilt the collapsing existing wall. It was rebuilt to frame the great old oak tree that stands majestically on the bank side. Coupled with the newly installed BBQ and patio area, the area is evolving in a place perfect for a summer picnic.
Quite recently the Penistone Grammer School was rebuilt and thousands of tons of earth were moved for the build. With the help of contractors from Laing O’Rourke, who built the new school and provided us with much needed labour and building advice, some top soil was effectively relocated to the garden to help fill up the planting beds.
They also refurbished our front gate, making the approach for visitors a much more appealing one. One of the beds to benefit from the top soil was the beautiful wild flower garden. Wild flowers not only look beautiful but they encourage beneficial insects into the garden.
It seems that our garden really does attract the bees. Quite recently a swarm of bees had to be contained after they took up residence in one of the polytunnels. With the help of a local bee man they are how living happily in two hives in the garden by the river.