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The Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), who achieved Silver awards in Green Impact 2013 and 2014, decided to create a vegetable garden as part of a wider refurbishment of their office space.

The Institute was also the winner of the Green Impact 2014 Environmental Improvement Award for the initiative. What was a patch of barren land has been transformed into a vegetable garden, providing low carbon food for their office and a new habitat for insects and wildlife as well as a place to compost teabags and other food waste.

To create the garden, a disused patch of land behind one of CISL’s buildings was selected and donations of any unwanted garden tools and seeds were sought. Volunteers then gathered over several Friday lunchtimes to mark out the new area, remove grass and weeds, dig the soil over and plant tomatoes, potatoes and other vegetables.

As part of the project a compost bin was also installed, which enables not only the collection of garden waste but also kitchen waste including coffee grinds and teabags.

Creating the vegetable patch was a great way to spend some time outside the office and get to know colleagues in a different setting, as well as learning more about gardening in general. Staff engagement with the garden continues, with ongoing weeding, watering and planning, meaning that it now provides a valuable way for staff to meet and relax, as well as boosting the local area’s biodiversity.

The proud gardeners harvested their first crop of homegrown, organic and seasonal vegetables in summer 2013!

Interested in learning more?

Learn more about Green Impact

Looking for free gardening equipment or plants? Try Cambridge Freecycle

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