So far we have had two meetings with the regional school representatives bringing forward our idea of making small gardens near schools. Last Thursday (13th Feb) our gardening group came together to discuss this item. The idea is not completely new as in Soviet times in some schools we had such small garden plots. Now our task now would be to initiate this idea to a wider public and find funding as well as teachers and other stakeholders.
Latvia in general can be characterized as an agricultural country, having great potential in developing sustainable farming and living according to principles of permaculture. Lately we have started to pay more attention to individual farmers working at home and contributing to economic growth of the country.
Taking into account our long winters we just recently started " practical" (so far we have held several seminars for our project) gardening season. Our local community alloted us a plot of land (actually it used to be a family kitchen garden, but the family moved to Ireland) where our local gardening group consisting of four people as wel as the girls from our centre have been working.
As for most north European countries winters are calm periods for gardeners, in Latvia this period is really long from about mid October (or earlier) to April. we have had several seminars about fruit and vegetable growing. These seminars are run in cooperation with our local Latvia State Institute of Fruit Growing, quite many outstanding scientists work in the Institute and they kindly agreeded to cooperate with us.
Though something rather new for our country, we have tried introducing this idea in our country as well. First trial was successful, we had a weekend event in the countryside near Kolka, in the west of Latvia, where we also did some weeding and planting near an old, abandoned home not far from the sea.
Project on sustainable gardening and exchange of experience in gardening matters.
Project partners from different countries have come to the first project meeting at Dobele PIUAC, the director of the centre Brigita Tivča outlined the main aims and activities of the project. The project will focus on promoting sustainable gardening issues, pay attention to the ways gardening is carried out - environmentaly friendly gardening, thus improving people`s wellfare.
The first seed has been planted here in Dobele, hopefully it will grow to be a beautiful plant. This is the last day of our first project meeting in Latvia, we were so honoured and happy to host this meeting and meet all the partners. I am sure we are going to make a great group and create sth really sustainable.
We learned about sustainable gardening by resspecting permaculture principles. In that guide we assembled the most useful gardening tips for all who like to improve their gardening approaches.