Archive for September, 2013

Lend wildlife a helping hand this October

Saturday, September 14th, 2013

frog pictureThe organisation Gardening for Wildlife, a joint initiative of the Royal Horticultural Society and The Wildlife Trusts, wants gardeners and allotment holders to actively support local biodiversity. They have designated the week 21st to 31st October to be ‘Wild about Gardens Week’. The hope is that all sorts of individuals and local community organisations will make a special effort that week to create a wildlife friendly environment. According to Professor Chris Baines, vice president of The Wildlife Trusts:
“The nation’s gardens are hugely important for wildlife and as a habitat network they are second to none. Inner city balconies and courtyards, the suburbs’ hedgerows and lawns and the orchards and allotments of market towns and villages; all have the potential to be incredibly rich habitats for wildlife. There are many simple ways in which we can make our gardens naturally richer. Nest boxes, bird feeders, log piles, nectar plants, fruiting shrubs, wall climbers and ponds all improve the life-chances for many garden creatures, and, as each of us improves our garden habitat for wildlife, the plants and animals that we attract will bring more pleasure in return”

To get involved, go to the organisation’s web site.  There you can find out about events in your area or you can register your own event.  Examples of events in Scotland that are already registered are


Greek Erasmus fellow visits Scottish Allotments

Monday, September 2nd, 2013


Georgios Chioureas with Mrs Chioureas and Emily Harvey from Forth Environment Link at the entrance to Kilmadock allotments

During the week August 26 to August 31 SAGS was host to Georgios Chioureas from the University of Ioannina in Greece.  Georgios, an agronomist by training, is on a fact finding mission funded by the Erasmus programme to investigate how public and private land is used and managed for allotments.The  programme of allotment visits was arranged so as to cover as great a variety of arrangements as possible.  Georgios visited allotments in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirling. He was able to see

  • traditional council allotments directly managed by council officers
  • allotments where the land is owned by the council but management devolved to plot holders
  • allotments on private land where the plot holders are totally responsible for all management
  • community growing spaces with individuals ‘growing their own’ in small raised beds and containers

He was also able to see allotments in a variety of environments, from leafy rural villages to challenging urban locations.

SAGS is grateful to the local allotment officers who took time to go through the administrative and management set up for allotments in their area and to explain the paperwork that keeps it all in order.