About Meadow in My Garden
Meadow In My Garden is a not-for-profit community interest company (CIC)
Founded in 2011 as a result of a deep concern about the state of nature, the project is focused on providing clear and tangible benefits for people and pollinators.
The main beneficiaries are gardeners, landscapers, councils, schools, volunteer groups, community farms, and of course the public at large. Equally important, we are providing a vital food source for ‘ecosystem service providers’ which include; honeybees, bumblebees, solitary bees, butterflies, moths, ladybirds, lacewings, hoverflies, dragonflies, damselflies (all flying insects really), which are having a particularly hard time at the moment.
The organisation’s activities
- Selling a range of award-winning flower meadow seed products designed to foster a wildlife friendly environment.
- Education and revenue generation through a series of high-profile gardening events and online.
- Talks and seminars for horticultural clubs, beekeepers groups, garden shows, festivals, green events, civic societies, colleges and schools.
- Networking through partnerships with wildlife organisations such as Wiltshire Wildlife Trust, Buglife and Team 4 Nature, and expert/wildlife authors – Brigit Strawbridge, Hugh Warwick, Roger Morgan-Grenville and Joe Harkness.
- Supporting community projects and volunteer groups involved in improving and supporting the landscape with a rich diversity of plants.
- We provide simple and practical solutions to the challenges encountered in the management of green spaces.
Our three main practices are:
- Supporting wildlife habitats and food sources through the creation of aesthetic ‘biodiversity’ flower meadows, mainly in private gardens, but also in the urban environment, in schools, parks, old factory sites etc. These are inexpensive, designed to be low in maintenance and have minimal watering requirements in a changing climate.
- Creating and restoring native grassland with British native wildflower species in gardens and the countryside, and natural environment protected areas. This benefits carbon capture, and dramatically reduces the need for maintenance, saving councils large amounts in their grass cutting budgets.
- Encouraging Guerrilla Gardening and community activism through the supply of native seed bombs to help pollinating insects, educate the public, and reach a wider audience (The perfect stocking-filler at Christmas markets!)
- To have a positive impact on the people and communities with whom we work
- We offer the very best free advice based on years of research and development, together with hands-on experience
- Committed to minimising the environmental impact of our activities
- Our aim is to be approachable, trustworthy, friendly and kind
- We donate significant quantities of seed to individuals, schools & community projects
- Our packaging is environmentally friendly, fully recyclable and reusable where possible
- We study and practice Permaculture design techniques
- We believe in the Gift Economy
Circular Economy & Regeneratively Produced Resources
As exponents of Permaculture techniques, we are dedicated to using the inherent qualities of plants and animals combined with natural characteristics of landscapes to produce life-supporting systems. This affects everything we do, so many of our seed mixes are designed, for instance, to support functional biodiversity in vegetable gardens and agriculture using no artificial fertilisers, no pesticides, no fungicides, no peat composts etc.
Some of our seed mixes are used as a floral green manure to fix nitrogen in the soil, natural pest control using biological integrated pest management (IPM), and we encourage a ‘no dig’ approach where possible, to avoid damage to precious soils.
Community projects are encouraged to collect ‘last years’ seeds from their meadows, for restoration and to create new meadows. This also helps to educate, and to spread awareness about the miracle of seed - to witness the entire life cycle of the plant.
How do Meadow In My Garden create a more regenerative, ethical, just and truly green world?
Since the start of our project in 2011 we have become evangelists for nature, travelling the length and breadth of the country to attend hundreds of garden shows and festivals (RHS Chelsea, Hampton Court, Chatsworth, Tatton Park, BBC Gardeners’ World, Glastonbury, Wilderness, Wood Festival to name a few, and we’ve even been to unlikely places like the Tory Party Conference!!) to trade, give talks & demonstrations, and to attempt to educate, inspire and motivate.
People growing seeds in their gardens or witnessing our community roundabouts and verges - a profusion of blooms supporting clouds of pollinating insects - will often be moved almost to tears, not just by the beauty, but I think by an awareness of the extinction of experience we have silently witnessed; the colour leached from the landscape in our lifetimes.
And as a CIC, rooted in our Wiltshire community, but spreading our message via social media (34,000+ Twitter followers) we can be more effective in breaking down barriers, always trying to practice kindness and generosity, and seeing the power in communities to take back control, often in very small increments, but building momentum with each step.
Our work does not just help people connect with nature in their gardens, it also leads to a greater sensitivity to the bigger picture (The UK is ranked 198th out of 218 countries for how we look after our nature) – so it is all about harnessing the positive energy around growing seeds, and seeing the emerging seedlings as an uprising of optimism, a YES vote for a green future!