Grow Greener with Garthdee Field Allotments Association

Category: Equipment Page 1 of 4

GFAA CCAF Benefits

Following our successful application for funding from the Community Climate Asset Fund (CCAF), we have been able to purchase a small wood chipping machine and ten rainwater storage tanks.

The wood-chipping machine has so far proved useful in our community garden where the prunings from the orchard have been converted into wood-chip. It’s a dinky little machine and will only accept single stalk branches with a diameter no more than two inches.

A number of our Volunteers have been trained in its use and have agreed to process suitable materials throughout the year ahead. This will reduce the amount of brush material we have to burnin site.

All ten rainwater tanks have been allocated to various plots on site with some being used to collect water from sheds or greenhouses and others just free-standing with an open collector arrangement using polythene sheet to capture the rainwater as the pictures show.

If further funding opportunities arise we would hope to acquire more rainwater tanks to meet demand

IBCs for Water Retention

Collecting rain water on our plots makes obvious sense. Some plants prefer rain water – blueberries for example. Having water on a plot is a time and effort saver. With conservation in mind, we ought to avoid using mains water if we can.

A system to capture rain water from a shed or greenhouse is the best way to passively fill an IBC or water butt. However, this may not always be possible or practical and if so, an arrangement like this can work well.

IBC Rain Water Collection

In this case pallet wood was used to create a rectangular frame sitting atop of the IBC and a sheet of polythene with a hole cut in it added to collect the rain. There’s enough polythene to drape into the IBC and the central weight keeps it in place in high winds (for months a brick served the same purpose). This arrangement has the disadvantage that water does not flow into the IBC until it rises above the lip of the container’s mouth.

This example has all of the hallmarks of my usual careful approach to fine woodworking, my high standards of engineering and my impeccable cleanliness, but in my defence it has worked well over five years or so – in that time the IBC has never been empty.

Construction excellence at every corner

You are welcome to come by and see it in place on Plot 81.

However, Gavin on Plot 7a has raised the bar with his new version of this solution which addresses the shortcomings of the above. Gavin is happy for you to come see the construction details.

Blue Skies Thinking – a ‘floor’ with a drain hole has been added
Plug perfect – held in place with a suspended weight and sealant
Storm-proofing restrainers

Gavin intends to add guttering and a downpipes to capture additional rain off his shed.

Update:

This video includes the suggestion that the whole top be cut off the IBC to achieve catch the rainwater and offers some larger scale options including using a pump.

This video offers ideas for using solar power to pump water from an IBC around an allotment.

If you have another ideas please let us have the details.

Community Climate Asset Fund Award for GFAA

The Community Climate Asset Fund (CCAF) is a funded programme from Scottish Government run by Keep Scotland Beautiful. CCAF aims to:

  • Build on the invaluable role that community based organisations are playing in Scotland’s response to COVID-19
  • Support community groups to play a prominent role in the Green Recovery
  • Provide capital funding to community based organisations to help them tackle climate change as we accelerate our just transition to a net zero society
  • Complement funding provided through the Climate Challenge Fund and other community and place based initiatives
  • Help communities to reduce usage of petrol and diesel cars, cut waste, grow local food and reduce emissions from community buildings.

Following an application made in November, GFAA is pleased to announce the award of just over £3000 for the purchase of capital assets for our allotment. Our bid centred on making our operations greener by:

  • the retention of rainwater to reduce the amount of tap water used
  • increased use of a wider range of compostable materials produced on plots
  • reducing the amount of plot waste burned on site
  • increasing the contribution our community makes to producing more locally grown food.

The award has enabled us to purchase a small wood chipping machine which we will use to chip prunings from around the site and so reduce the amount of material being burnt and hence the amount of carbon produced.

We have also purchased 1000 litre rainwater storage tanks which we will use to reduce the consumption on site of town water supplies.

If you are interested in getting involved with any of these activities please get in touch with myself or any member of the Committee.

Increasing composting and reducing the amount of green materials burned were recommendations made in our recent Green Flag Award evaluation, and it is very pleasing to be able to make a start on this agenda thanks to the CCAF funding.

Pots Galore

Stuart

Aidan O’Connor has been in touch offering the following plant pots available to allotment members, with 10% off and free delivery on all orders over £50 direct to the site. Please get in touch with me if you are interested in placing an order. Stuart. 

ItemQuantityPrice% Off
1 Litre Round Black Plant Pots108.497.64
2 Litre Round Black Plant Pots109.498.54
3 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1010.999.89
4 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1011.9910.79
5 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1012.9911.69
7.5 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1015.4913.94
10 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1015.9914.39
15 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1025.9923.39
20 Litre Round Black Plant Pots1034.4931.04
1 Litre Grey 100% Recycled Materials Plant Pots5011.4910.34

Tool Repair Service

Plotters will know that our Volunteer Squad does all sorts around our site and helping (in special circumstances) on individual plots.

I’m pleased to say that Gordon Bennett is turning his skills to tool repair and refurbishment on our behalf.

Better than new

If you have a special tool (hand tools only please, no power tools) in need of TLC, or a broken tool that could be repaired and put to community use, please have a word with any member of the Volunteer Squad (Anne, Plot 92a, Ron 65a or Norman Plot 81). We will be pleased to look at it.

Gordon goes hands on

Free Shelving Units

Roll up, roll up! First Come, first served. Form an orderly queue please!

GFAA have been gifted a number of industrial shelving units. We need to thank Murray from SANMAC, the company concerned, and Keith Slater who facilitated matters and transported the units to Garthdee Field for us.

The units are tall as you can see, made of metal and designed to last a lifetime. the shelves are adjustable. Obviously, they are pre-loved, as they say today. If you have a Container they will fit height-wise and of course they can be cut down in height if necessary. They are likely to be especially useful for plotters with Containers, metal or plastic sheds – but they are on offer to any and all.

If you are interested, register your interest in a comment below or text or phone Norman on 07702127346. They are free, but if once you see them, you feel a donation to GFAA funds is appropriate, then such a gesture will be much appreciated.

The volunteer squad will be pleased to deliver to your plot and cut them to size if necessary.

As I said, first come first served! We have about 10 units.

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