Bungay Plant Hunters (press release)

Sustainable Bungay and Bungay Library are looking for plants to complete their newly built community garden.

Over the last year a group from Sustainable Bungay have been working to transform the courtyard at Bungay Library into a community garden. The first stage of the project – building the garden – is drawing to a close, and to celebrate Sustainable Bungay and the Library are hosting a grand opening on Sunday the 19th of September.

But before then there is still work to be done, not least finding plants and filling the new raised beds, so the group are launching an appeal for plants. These will go into the permanent beds around the edge of the courtyard (there is a central bed for seasonal displays) and, in keeping with the desire to mix the functional with the aesthetic, the wish list includes fruiting bushes and herbs as well as bee and butterfly plants.

“We want to fill the beds with vegetables, herbs, dye plants, native flowers, fruit trees, exotics and more; we’re also planning to display information about the history and uses of the plants,” said Nick Watts, who’s been coordinating the project for Sustainable Bungay. The group hopes the space will turn into a ‘living library’ and that the garden will become a haven for story telling, outdoor events and quiet reading.

The project got underway in January when Sustainable Bungay, part of the Transition movement, organised a permaculture design course at the library. More than just an approach to garden design permaculture – taken from the terms ‘permanent culture’ and ‘permanent agriculture’ – is a way of thinking about and creating sustainable communities as well as sustainable food production systems. Inspired by the course, the group set about using what they had learned to create a productive and beautiful space at the library.

The idea of transforming the unappealing paved courtyard has really caught on and Sustainable Bungay and the library have received generous donations from individuals, the Town Council, Bungay Town Trust, the Bungay Society and from a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party organised by Three Willows Cafe. So far the money has been used to pay a professional bricklayer to build raised beds using donated bricks, buy fruit trees, commission a unique hazel screen and purchase oak to create seats. The rest of the work, including shifting 5 tonnes of topsoil into the raised beds, has been done by volunteers.

The full list of plants is available in the library, but the group would particularly like to hear from you if you have any spare blackcurrant or redcurrant bushes, sweet woodruff, primroses, bay or verbena. Sustainable Bungay can be contacted at info@sustainablebungay.com or through the library and there is more about the project on their website: www.sustainablebungay.com

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Notes for Editors:
For more information about the library courtyard garden please contact Charlotte Du Cann Email: theseakaleproject@hotmail.co.uk
Founded in 2008 Sustainable Bungay is a community-led response to the triple crunch of climate change, peak resources and the economic crisis. We’re part of the Transition Network [www.transitionnetwork.org] and believe that the best way to effect positive change for sustainability is through community activities – from bee-keeping to bottling.
For more about Sustainable Bungay, including more photos of the garden, visit www.sustainablebungay.com.

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