The gardening group takes place fortnightly on a Wednesday from 10:00am until 3:00pm. Members get the chance to draw on the experience of staff that have an intricate knowledge of gardening and the joy and therapy it can bring. Members have the opportunity to work in the 30 x 10 ft poly tunnel, planting seeds in the purpose built beds as well as in individual pots. Most of the activities are wheel chair friendly, including sewing/potting up, pruning and watering. Members will also be able to take part in picking the fruit and vegetables, bringing in cuttings to grow and general maintenance. The garden also hosts flower beds, vegetable patches and novelty gardening spaces. Gardening club members will also have the opportunity to work in the sensory garden that is situated at the back of the Pear Tree Café.
Gardening club offers trips out to view national trust open gardens and other gardening related venues such as garden centres. Members of the gardening group will have the opportunity to take produce that they grow home or sell it on the gardeners market stall at the Pear Tree Café. Members will be encouraged to take pictures to generate their own garden journal that they can keep as a record of their achievements.
Gardening club relies on the ideas and imagination of the members and the expertise of the staff that run it to make those ideas grow and blossom. Although gardening club has only been running for 1 year, it has become popular with the tenants whom receive support under the Tru-Care umbrella and for those in the local community that want to access the service. Members receive support and guidance from Tru-Care staff who are fully qualified in undertaking personal care, moving and handling and the administration of medication.
Members are asked to bring their own packed lunch and drinks, although there is the option of a hot meal at the Pear Tree Café- there is a designated picnic area with gazebo. All tools, materials and safety wear is provided for the members by Tru-Care. The Gardening Club is seasonal by nature and runs from February through to October.
- All Tru-Care support staff have minimum NVQ Level 2 in Health and Social Care. They all have basic training in first aid, moving and handling, SOVA and fire awareness.
- The staff that facilitate the gardening group each have decades of gardening experience. They are passionate about gardening– importantly they understand the therapeutic qualities that gardening can provide, having had first hand experience of this through their own lives.
- The garden at 14 Rendham Road is a truly beautiful venue that has so much potential (please see the pictures attached). There is enough space for members to pursue the most ambitious gardening projects and see them become a reality. An example of this may be a themed area of the garden- an alpine garden or Italian corner. At present the garden is still very much a blank canvas. Members also have the opportunity to work in the sensory garden at the Pear Tree Café.
- Disabled toilet facilities are available at the Café which is opposite 14 Rendham Road.
- All activities are risk accessed on a rolling basis depending on the nature of the task.
- Starting a new hobby that members can keep up for the rest of their lives.
- Learning new skills, improving fine motor skills through delicate procedures such as potting up seedlings and pruning.
- Learning about plants and the natural world.
- Valuing the plants and vegetables that we so often take for granted.
- Basic understanding of markets as members see the time and money invested in a crop which then may be sold to the general public or to the Café.
- Valuing working as a team when undertaking tasks like erecting growing frames or planting out borders.
- Appreciating other peoples hard work when visiting other gardens in the area.
- Self esteem, pride, achievement and responsibility through planning, planting and nurturing something from start to finish. The gardening diary provides something tangible to show for all their effort and will remind members of what they achieved.