Aberdeen kids sowing seeds for future in box gardens

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Schoolchildren from across the city have been building gardens in cardboard boxes while learning about sustainability.

The pupils were taking part in a One Seed Forward project set up to show youngsters how easy it is to grow their own produce.

The community group provided the children with a variety of vegetable plants, flowers and materials for the initiative.

Pupils were given half an hour to build their miniature gardens which are now on display at Duthie Park, beside the bowling green pavilion.

The pupils were taking part in a Sustainable Development Goals conference which was held at the International School of Aberdeen.

Children from Fernielea Primary, Muirfield Primary, Kemnay Academy, Banchory Academy, Bucksburn Academy, The Gordon Schools Huntly, St Margaret’s School for Girls, Bridge of Don Academy, Robert Gordon’s College, St Joseph’s Primary, the International School of Aberdeen and Kittybrewster School were at the event.

Founder and chairman Bob Donald said: “Pupils gave presentations on climate change and sustainability. And at the end the students were invited to our workshop.

“We got the idea from MasterChef when they are asked to head into the market and get creative.

“We had a table set up with different seedlings and vegetables.

“There was a wide range of things they could plant, such as beetroot, chives, marigolds, tomatoes, parsnips and beans.”

Mr Donald and his team also provided healthy food for the children at the event.

The students were tasked with designing their garden boxes with a theme.

He said: “One of the groups chose a marine theme and made a water garden.

“They painted dolphins on their box – they really got quite creative.”

The miniature gardens can now be visited in the community area at Duthie Park in Aberdeen.

Mr Donald added: “It shows great work with lots of different elements of the community and Aberdeen City Council represented. They will now be taken care of by the council and volunteers at the park.

“People are welcome to visit the small gardens and look at what the students were able to put together.

“We’d be interested in launching something similar next year.”

One Seed Forward was founded two years ago after the community group bought seed potatoes and handed them out to schools and allotment groups in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

The team also worked with Aberdeen University to create gardens and educational programmes for primary schools in regeneration areas across the city, helping to encourage the children to eat more healthily.

Bramble Brae, Woodside and Tullos primary schools were chosen to take part in the Aberdeen School Garden Programme in 2017, where they transformed their under-used green spaces to make way for a community garden.