Cardiff Salad Garden has created a new, 6-metre, ‘living salad circle’ right in the middle of one of the city’s busiest parks.
Nestled in the heart of Cardiff’s Bute Park, the structure will be open until June 8th, and will welcome more than 150 participants to workshops where they can learn more about planting, growing, harvesting and cooking salad leaves.
I have written about Cardiff Salad Garden on this blog before; they grow super-fresh salad leaves right in the heart of the city, which then supplies local cafes and restaurants (including Pettigrew Bakery in Canton and Wild Thing in Grangetown).
Now, they have commissioned The Bottega Project to create a new mobile structure, which consists of several modular growing walls.
Each wall contains floor to ceiling planting of shallow rooted plants, including salad leaves and a range of other edible herbs and flowers. The living walls will be interactive and changeable, with workshop participants having the opportunity to harvest plants as well as planting them.
This project is receiving a grant worth £10,000 from Food for Life Get Togethers as part of its work to test innovative approaches, and to further develop initiatives which bring people from different generations and backgrounds together through food.
Thanks to Cardiff Salad Garden’s extensive knowledge of quick-growing edible, leafy plants and herbs, the walls are planted with over 20 different salad leaves – from lettuces to rockets, mustards, baby spinach, coriander and sorrel, including plants familiar to different communities.
Sophie Bolton from Cardiff Salad Garden said, “This will be an accessible space for people of all ages and abilities and we intend to use the mobile workshop as a primary tool that will allow us to provide assistance to community groups who want to go on to grow and share food. Throughout the mobile workshop’s residency in Bute Park, we’ll be running a series of sessions timetabled for invited groups and individuals as well as ‘drop in’ sessions for members of the public who want to find out more about the project.”
“In Cardiff we have a wealth of knowledge and experience about growing and cooking food. We want to create a space where people can be inspired by food and by living plants. We want to create excitement and interest around where food comes from, and hope that there will be many more community groups inspired to share fresh food together by this project.”
Take a Virtual Tour of the Salad Circle – And Get Growing At Home
On Wednesday the 9th June, the folks from Green Squirrel will be hosting a free online event and virtual tour of the new salad circle, and will speak to it’s designer, John Whitehead from the Bottega project. Chris from Grow Cardiff will also pop in to demonstrate how to get growing salad on a smaller scale at home.
Green Squirrel are also offering a free salad seed selection to the first 10 people who register for the event – you can sign up for your space here: https://green-city-events.eventcube.io/events/31450/virtual-grow-along-salad-circle-takeover.
Food for Life Get Togethers is a programme of regular community activities that connect people from all ages and backgrounds through growing, cooking and sharing good food. It’s a 4-year National Lottery Community Fund programme that started in June 2019 and is led by the Soil Association Food for Life charity, and delivered in Wales by Food Sense Wales.