An innovative environmental project in Bootle is set to create 80 new sustainable street gardens in the town.
The Taking Root in Bootle community gardening network has established the Community Growing Circle project to link at-home food growing by local households with community composting facilities in the area to create a circular green loop.
The project has been made possible by a grant from the Liverpool City Region Community Environment Fund, established last year by Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram to improve the environment of the region and promote community involvement in green projects.
Each household taking part in the project will receive a starter kit for growing in front of terraced homes, a water butt and a caddie for collecting and transporting raw food waste to the new community compost bins in South Park and North Park.
Organisers say that adding 80 mini growing sites along terraced house fronts will increase biodiversity, support a variety of invertebrate wildlife, provide a mix of fruit and vegetable flowers for pollinators and substantially increase resting points for bees and other insects.
Other benefits will include plant absorption of water during periods of heavy rain and heat in the summer in what are heavily paved and built-up areas.
Ruth Livesey of Bootle-based social enterprise Regenerus, who co-ordinates Taking Root, commented: “The circular approach we have developed is designed to highlight the food and waste possibilities that exist in small spaces.
“By using unlikely growing spaces in front of residents’ homes we will enhance biodiversity and create greener communities.
“We also aim to show how growing at home and community composting can help to reduce food miles, packaging and waste, and provide families with delicious fresh produce on their doorstep,” added Ruth.
And to ensure that residents get the most out of the project they will be invited to attend composting and food growing sessions at the Taking Root community gardens, supported by online tutorial videos.
The Community Growing Circle project is one of three new environmental initiatives being launched by Taking Root for this spring.
The other two will see the development of a network of ten new wildflower meadows across south Sefton and North Liverpool, and a project to create a field of flax flowers across different local sites, highlighting Bootle’s historic links with linen production