Giraffe Trading Named Winner of DK Thomson Award 2016

We are absolutely delighted to win this year’s DK Thomson Award.

Provost Liz Grant presented our award which acknowledged our service to the community of Perth and Kinross throughout the year.

A huge thanks to all our staff, volunteers and jobseekers for all their help – we couldn’t do it without them!

Tales from the Walled Garden at Springlands: 4-6 April

This week has been a week of construction.

On Tuesday, Right Track team members were busy constructing the compost bays from old pallets and what a great job they made of that as you can see.

Finishing touches next week and then we can start to use them.

Meanwhile Shiona continued with forking the vegetable plot, Helen continued with planting up planters and Jean and Pam continued with pricking out!

On Wednesday it was Spring Clean Day.  Glasshouse 1 is now sparkling and clean.

The Growing Capability group were busy potting on carnations and Foxgloves to be sold at Ladeside.  Ali took up the pricking out role and worked with Marigolds!

On the construction front, Helen, Daniel and Liam were busy making a table top from reclaimed wood.

Finally on Thursday, Daniel, Alan and I got down to slab laying the path started last year.  Jean continued with tending and sorting plants to be sold at Ladeside.

More news next week

PS: Remember, the Ladeside Plant Centre is now open, Saturdays only 10-3

Tales from the Walled Garden at Springlands: 28-30 March

Yet again full steam ahead this week.

With soil temperatures rising, it was time to continue with the vegetable beds and sow carrot seeds.  It also meant that many of the overwintered plants could be moved from the protection of the glasshouses either outside or to the netted tunnel.  Summer bedding seedlings were also growing apace and many (happy!) hours were spent pricking out.  Spring and Herb planters were also being planted up for sale at the Cafes, and at Quarrymill.

It certainly was a week for moving as well.  Right Track finished emptying the compost from the compost bays and can now start building new sturdier frames.

With the opening of the Ladeside Plant Centre on Saturday it was time to move plant material from Springlands to Ladeside.  On Thursday, Jobseekers and volunteers were busy sorting the plants and setting them up on the Sales Benches.  Whilst Jean and Helen held the fort at Springlands, sorting and preparing more plants.

Saturday 1 April saw the opening of Ladeside Plant Centre. Fortunately it stayed dry and warm which encouraged some to venture out to see us.  The plant centre is now mainly stocked with our own grown plants, nurtured from seed and with our distinct labels and branding all produced at Springlands – the fruition of my vision from 2014 when I joined CheckIn Works/Giraffe

We need YOUR votes!

CheckIn-Giraffe has been shortlisted for the Provident Good Neighbour Fund and now has the chance to win up to £2000 towards our local good cause!

All we need YOU to do is visit the link below and click VOTE – it really is that simple!

VOTE NOW

Tales from the Walled Garden at Springland 21st to 23rd March

I managed to miss the snow on Tuesday, but some of my hardy volunteers braved it and completed the planting up of the 4 small Display Gardens.

Wednesday and Thursday saw the continuing work of preparing plants ready for sale, pricking out of seedlings and planting up Planters for sale.

Our first rhubarb of the season was taken to Mill Street for sale, with hopefully fresh supplies going to both Mill Street, South Street and Ladeside each week for the foreseeable future.

Finally, remember Ladeside Plant Centre opens on Saturday 1 April from 10am to 3pm. Hope to see you there!

Springlands blog – 7th to 9th March

Tuesday 7 March

As promised, new signs started popping up in the garden – lots of them, as you can see!

Another day for the Right Track team to be busy emptying the compost bays – (don’t worry, one more week and then reconstruction time), and more forking over the veg beds for some of the volunteers.

 

Wednesday 8 March

With the imminent opening of the Ladeside Plant Centre (Saturday April 1 at 10am) it was time to get some plants ready – Jean and Daniel, were busy checking over the roses and giving them a fresh feed.

And if you can’t wait for Ladeside to open again, why not come along to Springlands Walled Garden, (Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 11-3) where all the plants are grown, nurtured and prepared for sale and buy direct from us.

Meanwhile the Sales Trolley at the South Street Café was getting a minor makeover.  The sign writing is still to be done, but check it out and the wonderful planters and heathers for sale there. And if you path does not go via South Street, there is always the Café at Mill Street where they can be bought (Along with great coffees, teas, rolls etc).

 

Thursday 9 March

It was time for another sortie to the Ladeside Plant Centre for all the volunteers and Jobseekers.  The beds behind the Sales Area were being cleared and prepared for planting up with herbs (mainly parsley and chives), for use in the Mill Street, South Street and CATH kitchens.  Also look out for fresh cut herbs for sale soon at the Cafes.

Thinking even further ahead, broccoli, kale and cabbage seedlings were being planted out and hidden away from the pigeons as you can see!  (Maybe the Scarecr in  The t Ma May

 

PS The Scarecrow in the background isn’t a permanent fixture!

Tales from the Walled Garden at Springlands

Tuesday 28 February

A frosty start to the morning, but that didn’t deter my volunteers, Shiona, Gudrun (welcome back) and new ‘girl’ Jean, from forking over some of the veg beds.  Meanwhile planters (and more rhubarb crowns) were being prepared to take to Mill Street and South Street.

Don’t they look fabulous – priced at £8 and £10 and there’s more to replace them – great for Mother’s Day, with a bow FOC – Go to Mill Street, South Street or visit us at Springlands on Isla Road.


Wednesday 1 March – St David’s Day

Still frosty, but ideal for Jean and Ali to go and prick out tomato plants in the glasshouse, Moneymaker, Golden Sunrise and Ailsa Craig, – look for them to plant in May and all those red and yellow fruits from  July.

Meanwhile, Poppies and Foxgloves, spotted in the garden, were being dug up and potted.


Thursday 2 March

Back to thoughts of summer, so time for Fiona and Liz to start sowing more bedding plants – Poached Egg plants, Snapdragons, and Mesembryanthemum (Livingstone Daisy) to name but a few.

Hopefully we should soon know our way around the Garden, as new Signage (prepared from wood ‘lying around’ the garden!), was being manufactured – will show it off next week

Tales from the Walled Garden – Feb 21st

Tuesday 21 February

The week started with the Right Track group happily digging out compost material from a couple of our compost bays.  The compost was then barrowed into the blue poly tunnel to be forked in to the soil in the next couple of weeks.

Meanwhile Helen and Shiona were busy forking over and preparing the veg beds

Right Track Team member enjoying a well earned rest after moving all that compost!

Wednesday 22 February

A bright sunny day so Daniel and I had an away day – we were working at the Plant Centre at Ladeside!  Once again it was emptying one of the compost bays, from the compost material we had produced throughout the previous year, over the raised beds in preparation for the sprouts, kale, cabbages and cauliflowers.

Thursday 23 February

Well, today it was an away day for everyone – except me. Still I can’t blame them – it was snowing, damp and cold.  So I decided to make the most of it and plan for a mini forest – as you can see

Hopefully you will see these cuttings, once rooted, in next year’s Winter Planters. Patience is what is now required.

A HUGE Welcome to Shona from Giraffe!

Hi!  I’m Shona, Giraffe’s new volunteer and client co-ordinator.

I’d love to hear from you if you would you like to make a real difference to people in the Perth and Kinross community who need some extra support to access job opportunities.

We’re particularly looking for people to volunteer in our South Street Café and Springlands Walled Garden working alongside our jobseekers.

If you are enthusiastic, keen to help others and have a few hours a week to spare then please get in touch. I’m on Shona@checkin-giraffe.uk or 01738 449 227.

Giraffe Tales from Springlands Walled Garden

This is Kathy’s blog from our Springlands Plants site in Perth.


Tuesday 14 February – Valentine’s Day

A cold start, but hey ho, ‘tis only mid February!  It was a day for Shiona to fork over the salad growing area in the small poly tunnel and Pam and Helen to plant and water our December sown salad/lettuce seedlings.

The Right Track group were busy digging out an overgrown area, putting weed control fabric down and then covering it with bark chippings – one less area to worry about for weeds. Pam and Helen were also busy counting plants.


Wednesday 15 February

At last, a tool shed where the tools are clearly and safely seen and stored, thank you Helen.  Now everyone will have to remember to clean them after use, no excuses!

Next question – what can you do with 6 small double glazed window units?  Well it’s obvious, use them for cold frames.  Daniel worked and cleared 4 small raised beds at the bottom end of the garden and hey presto, the window units fitted a treat.

And finally Helen dug up some parsnips for the Cafes. It’s amazing, the shapes some of them!

 


Thursday 16 February

The rhubarb is starting to grow and so it is time to dig out some and divide it.  And what better way to ensure those who might like to grow their own than offer some of the ‘crowns’ for sale at the Cafes.  After I lifted them, Liz cut them down to size.

The crocuses, planted in bowls by Gareth and Gerry in September, are now flowering and so at last a splash of colour to sell.

Time to think of summer and sow the first of the bedding seeds.  Maureen made a start with sowing Lobelia.