Wednesday, 12 November 2014

A Stitch in Time

Overnight on the 10th October we were moored up in the Castlefield complex in the middle of Manchester, and in my post on the 11th I mentioned the old churchyard gardens I walked through on my way to the shop.

Into one area had been transplanted an RHS award-winning garden by Daniela Coray which I didn't have space to comment on at the time.

I found it very hard to get a compelling photo, partly because the autumn conditions seemed to conceal its bounds and its true character, and partly, no doubt, because of my lack of photographic competence. A board informs the visitor of the project, and I thought it was worth reproducing some of the text.

"Local residents and a host of volunteers worked tirelessly to help replant her Gold award winning garden 'A Stitch in Time' in St John’s Gardens in the heart of Manchester. With a focus on providing a respite for urban dwellers, the garden is a green oasis. It offers an escape from the hectic surroundings of the city, with handcrafted benches inviting a moment to relax. The oak benches, made to look like apple cores, will weather naturally over the years. The drainage channels are aimed to reflect a dried up river bed, while abundant planting includes many edible species.

With its traditional grid layout of apple trees under-planted with wildflowers and perennials, the garden makes reference to the rural idyll of an orchard. The planting illustrates beautifully the ability for urban green spaces to be both aesthetically pleasing and useful. Promoting biodiversity with plants for wildlife, native hedges and apple trees, the garden will serve as an important wildlife stepping stone within the City."

Boaters passing through Manchester will tend to overnight at Castlefield, and I can thoroughly recommend a walk up past the Museum of Science and Industry and along Lower Byron Street until you reach the garden. At the very least, it's the most pleasant route to the Sainsbury's Local and the Tesco Express!


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