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August 3, 2021

GetGrowing Scotland

One of the most common refrains to be heard as people reflect on their experiences of the past year is how they have become reacquainted with their local parks and outdoor spaces and how reconnecting with nature has impacted positively on their physical and mental health. Alongside this and in part spurred on by it, there has been an unprecedented increase in local food growing and requests for support in how to care for and cultivate biodiversity within local areas. In response, a new online grassroots network has emerged, organically of course, to offer assistance.

GetGrowing Scotland

“A garden is a solution that leads to other solutions.” Wendell Berry

GetGrowing Scotland is a new online network for communities and people growing food and other plants, and caring for and enjoying  nature in their local area.

The ‘great outdoors’ starts at home, from the patch of grass outside your door, the shared backgreen, to the unused land outside our schools and businesses. While woodland and park areas are designated as outdoor spaces, pockets of under utilised green space offer enormous potential. People and groups in communities across Scotland tend many such spaces, untapping their potential and using them to enjoy and benefit from a range of activities: growing and eating fresh food, learning about and connecting with nature, improving physical and mental health and wellbeing, tackling climate and environment issues, and making our neighbourhoods more beautiful, accessible and useful.

This movement is especially significant with the changes that COVID-19 has brought to our lives, highlighting the health benefits of access to nice outdoors spaces and fresh local food,  but also the inequality of access.  Access to decent nature spaces, alongside housing, health and education, is a basic requirement for a good quality of life. Public spaces that can be used for growing and nature activities are a local resource for wellbeing and socialising, community events and learning. Locally grown food and community led nature improvements foster community connection, creating spaces people feel safe and confident using. If spaces provide what local people want they will be better used. The individual and community benefits are immeasurable; the challenge is how everyone can access and benefit and ‘Get Growing’.

If you are a community group, local organisation, school or business in Scotland and want to start or improve a growing site for your community, we are here to help each other. 

If you are an individual growing or just staring out in your garden or allotment, and keen to share and learn, by growing your own you are part of growing in your community, making space and taking care of nature 

And if you are on an allotment waiting list don’t just wait GetGrowing! Contact your local community garden and see if they are looking for volunteers, it may suit you and gives you the opportunity to learn, contribute and grow.