Category Archives: Growing Birmingham

Winterbourne – July Update


Digging for Dirt continues to grow and explore new and exciting ways to engage with Winterbourne’s history, plant collections and projects – thanks in no small part to your support. If you enjoy a post, please continue to help spread the word by sharing on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest by clicking the icons which follow at the bottom of each page:

All of this wet weather we have been having recently has meant that the weeds are grow

ing twice as fast and driving the gardeners mad. Have a look at last month’s ‘The Unmentionables’ to find out how they have been coping and discover a different side to your everyday garden weeds through the work of cyanotype artist Anne Parouty:

After two years of planning, digging and planting ‘Ovid’s Garden’ situated at the end of the Lower Lawn finally opened on a sunny Saturday in June complete with talks from its architects and a special performance by Roman pantomime theatre group Avid for Ovid. See how it went at:

The writings of Gertrude Jekyll inspired much of Winterbourne’s original design and indeed her theories of colour harmonisation continue inform our choice of herbaceous planting today. In this month’s ‘Snapshot’ we find the colour blue in some surprising places:

Dodge the rain showers and get out into your own garden this month. There are plenty of great tips and plenty of photographs of some spectacular summer showstoppers in our ‘July Notebook’ :

Birchfield Residents Action Group – Job Vacancy

Birchfield Residents Action Group have got a job vacancy for a Project Manager to be based at their Livingstone Road Community Allotment, the advert is below!

Part-time position based at Livingstone Road Community Allotment

Hours per week: 16 hours per week (Initially a fixed term 6 month contract with the possibility of an extension)

Salary: £10.41 per hour (Payroll managed by BVSC)

Birchfield Residents Action Group (BRAG) set up the Livingstone Road Community Allotment Project in 2010. The allotment project aims to involve and connect people of all ages and backgrounds to the natural environment and food growing, and also works with socially isolated people who live in the locality. The project currently receives funding from Birchfield Big Local for work with vulnerable adults at the allotment site and also for work with the wider community on Bloom in Birchfield – part of a national initiative to encourage local residents to take greater pride in their neighbourhoods. More information can be found at –

Growing Birmingham Networking Event – Tuesday 12th April – 7pm – 9pm

19758323333_3201b7d073_hJoin Growing Birmingham at the Botanical Gardens for our annual networking event. Coinciding with the Big Dig weekend, the evening will contain a variety of workshops including: support with funding, social media, growing to sell, volunteer engagement and more. Attendees are offered the chance to meet people in their field, discuss current projects and maybe even come up with some new ones!

Open to all, for more information click the link here.

Bloom in Birchfield – Spring Event

Livingston Road C2013-06-26-10-58-25ommunity Allotment are having a Spring event on the 2nd April to launch a ‘Friends of Bloom in Birchfield’. The event will run between 1-4pm and they are looking for volunteers to help them run the day! They want everyone who wants to see a cleaner and more beautiful Birchfield to join together under the ‘Bloom in Birchfield’ banner. Get down and get involved with what promises to be a brilliant day.

For more information please e-mail Rob at [email protected]


Mapping Birmingham’s Community Growing Spaces

It has been a while in getting there, Growing Birmingham are please to be able to make available for the first time a map of Birmingham’s Community Gardens, Growing Spaces and Community Orchards.

The map is available here

We know this is by no means complete, and we can add to it all the time, so if your local space is missing and you want it adding then please let us know in a comment below or by e-mail to [email protected] 

Some of the spaces on the map already have more information linked to them, web site addresses and the like, we hope to add pictures too soon.


Have Your Say on the Future of Birmingham

Birmingham City Council is running a Budget Consultation to discuss financial cuts being made to a variety of services.

Birmingham Parks is one of the services which will be affected and this consultation is the the perfect opportunity to have your say on what those cuts may look like…

Some proposals are:
Reducing numbers of park keepers
Reducing the cutting of ornamental grass from 26 to 12 cuts a year
Abandoning grass cutting in some areas completely
Removal of 60 play areas
Reduction of ranger numbers
Reduction in woodland teams

The Budget Consultation can be accessed through this link which also leads to useful factsheets summarising each area.

Read More

Urban Harvest: Invest a fiver-plus & get bags of rewards!

We have an exciting new project, Urban Harvest. It’s the project that finds good use for your surplus fruit, distributing it to people and preventing it going to waste.

It began a couple of years ago, but we need your help to make it sustainable.

If you’re willing to offer support and/or invest £15 (or more) in this great project, please do go to our crowdfunding page here:

We’re offering lots of rewards including fruit trees for your own garden, workshops on pruning and juicing, invitations to special events, plus other rewards throughout the eight weeks of crowd funding — and a special business offer to plant an orchard in your grounds.

Grow It Yourself (GIY) UK Launches in Birmingham 2013


July  20th sees the launch of GIY UK:

“Our vision is for a healthier, more sustainable and more connected world where people grow their own food. We inspire and empower people to grow their own by bringing them together in community groups and online to share tips, advice and expertise.”

  • Hear talks by experts and get your burning questions answered
  • Meet like-minded gardeners and food growers
  • Network with organisations who may be able to help and support your personal or community project.

Venue: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, West Midlands B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Communities: Buy your own land!

The Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens is holding an information packed day for those interested in BUYING LAND FOR COMMUNITY GARDENS, ALLOMTENTS, COMMUNITY WOODS OR CSAs. Advisors and support organisations are also welcome.

Where: Birmingham Midlands Institute

When: 27th November 2013


Urban food growing: Why it matters

Last week I wrote about the pointlessness of Birmingham attempting to be self-sufficient in food. That is not to say that growing (and eating!) food planted and nurtured in the city isn’t worth promoting, let alone doing.

It is. Here are three arguments as to why.

The first is the every-little-counts argument. Clare Devereux of Brighton & Hove reckons their allotments and gardens produce 0.14% of what they need.

What if that could be nudged upwards to, say, 1%? Add in vertical farming and nudge local supplies up a tad more to, say, 2% or even 3%?

Read More

Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: