Welcome to the Secret Garden South of Bobber's Mill Bridge in Nottingham

Welcome to Windmill Community Gardens, home of the Climate Friendly Gardeners Project.

We are a group of local people, who are nurturing a wonderful community garden in the heart of the city. You'll find us just South of Bobbersmill Bridge, on the allotment site at the South end of Ascot Road. The Gardens are a great place where anyone can come to find out more about growing their own food in a changing climate. We cater for all abilities and welcome any nationality or age group.

Why not come and join us?

Friday 2 February 2024



  Our wild garden is beginning to take shape.  As you can see from the photo, we now have a wide wood chip path allowing access to the whole area and far less brambles than there used to be.  This is thanks to several work parties and our regular volunteers.  Volunteers from local companies have been the Good Gym and VF, clothing manufacturers, along with Lucy the Nottingham Forager's groups, and they have achieved more than we could have hoped for on our own.  So thankyou to all of them and to all the people who donated to our crowd funding last year.  We raised £6,725 (minus commission), which will buy a new shelter and other necessary items and help with match funding from grant funders.  The shelter will be a simple structure to replace the old shed and greenhouse at the back of the photo.

The Good Gym

Work Team from VF


A video of the Queerly Wild group at work
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A donation to the Really Wild Space

As you can see from the photos, this is a wet space in the autumn and winter.  To aid drainage, someone has created two "wells", which are brick tanks.  One of them is filled in, but the other provided useful water in last years dry spell.  The plan is to repair the walls and fence them off to keep them safe.  We are hoping to have children's activities in the garden, so are aware of safety issues, as well as providing some "equipment" for them.  We have already been left a large pipe and are considering a tree swing and willow structure.  The plan is on going, so any other ideas are welcome.  The space will also be used for an adult quiet space and Lucy the Forager is creating an area that can be used for meditation etc.  She is also utilising two old coal bunkers to grow mushrooms in.

Lucy reusing an old coal bunker

Apart from the winter waterlogging, the main reason that we decided to create a wild garden, was the number of trees there.  There is a massive Ash tree on one side and there was also a large Eucalyptus by the opposite fence, which blew down in a freak hurricane in autumn 2022.  a blessing in disguise, as it was blocking a lot of light.  The allotment committee members very kindly chopped most of it for us and took it away, but left us with the stump and a piece that can be made into a seat.  Other trees, include a large Walnut, plum trees, a conference pear, an apple, two Contorted Willows, which unfortunately were knocked down by the falling Eucalyptus.  Also several Alders, which are a water loving species and some shrubs including red stemmed Dogwood.  We are planning on creating a small Willow Carr with more varieties than we have at present.  The stems will be used for willow weaving.

The fallen Willows and an Alder Tree

As well as existing trees and shrubs, there were a lot of flowers, native and garden, in the allotment when we took it over.  These include some impressive Elecampane which are much loved by our friendly herbalist, Katherine Bellchambers.  Snowdrops have just come into flower and we planted bluebells last year to add to the woodland ecosystem.  We are focusing on native plants which will be used by Lucy the Forager and Katherine the herbalist, but because it is an old allotment, there will be non native species too.

Now the flood waters have subsided, we are all keen to complete the basic work on the garden and are coming up with interesting ideas to make it enjoyable for everyone.  Please come and join in as a volunteer, or, if you are unable to do that, come and visit, or maybe consider using the space in the future.  Finally, many thanks to Tracey Lloyd, Mary Parkes, Lucy the Forager and the Windmill Gardens allotment committee, who have helped get this project off the ground.

Rosie Jarrett 2.2.2024.

Information on Foraging: https://www.facebook.com/Thenottinghamforager

Information on Herbal matters: https://www.nottingham-herbalist.co.uk/