independent

Monday 22 October 2018

Garden given new life by team of volunteers

Anne Troy, Betty Kehoe, Wexford Chamber CEO Enda Kavanagh, and Wexford Municipal District Manager Angie Laffan
Anne Troy, Betty Kehoe, Wexford Chamber CEO Enda Kavanagh, and Wexford Municipal District Manager Angie Laffan
Volunteers hard at work
Wexford Chamber President Niall Reck takes a breather

Anna Hayes

Despite the continuing dry spell, a group of volunteers got together on a glorious Thursday evening to re-plant the raised beds in the Hill Street Community Garden.

The group, who will meet on a monthly basis to maintain the garden, worked under the guidance of designer Betty Kehoe of Aisling Landscapes, who is a big fan of the old-fashioned Meitheal, community effort style of getting a job done.

The work involved preparing the raised beds and re-planting them with a mix of bee-friendly flowers, vegetables, herbs and fruit bushes, many of which were donated by Pettitt's Supervalu in St Aidan's.

Betty chose a biodiversity-friendly range of mixed salads, swiss chard, beetroot, sweet corn, black currants, strawberries and various culinary herbs. As an organic garden it was possible to plant companion plants next to each other - for example, marigolds were planted alongside food plants to offer a natural means of pest control.

The work party included Chamber President Niall Reck, Chamber CEO Enda Kavanagh, and Wexford Municipal District Manager Angie Laffan who said the garden had proven to be a great way of bringing diverse local groups together for a common purpose, including Wexford GIY, the FDYS, the Cornmarket Project, Ard Aoibhinn, Windmill TTU, FAB and Love Redmond Park, as well as Wexford Working Men's Shed who played a crucial role in constructing the garden.

Wexford Chamber's Enda Kavanagh was getting her first taste of working in the garden which is alongside the Chamber offices.

She said: 'I'm delighted that the Chamber continues to be involved with such a worthwhile community initiative.'

Love Redmond Park spokesman Senan O'Reilly said that he loved the camaraderie and shared sense of purpose among the various groups involved, adding that the beds offered a burst of colour to those entering the park from Hill Street and pointing out that many see the community garden as an adjunct to Redmond Park.

There are plans to plant a fruit garden in October.

Betty Kehoe added: 'This garden shows what can be achieved in a small space by a willing group of volunteers. There is no reason it cannot be replicated in public spaces and housing estates all over Wexford. Let's get growing!'

Wexford People

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