Greengrow is a workers co-operative dedicated to social, environmental and economic sustainability.

We are organised on non-hierarchical principles. We share the decision making and try to share the responsibilities and work between us – so no one is in charge, but some people will lead on particular bits of work.

Greengrow emerged from Common Ground Co-operative, which owns around 20 acres of land in Ilketshall St Andrew. The two co-operatives work closely together and have a large overlap in membership. Greengrow has the management of the central growing area of the land, and the use of a barn, in order to supply vegetables for veg-box deliveries, local businesses, volunteers and ourselves.

We are developing the growing area on permaculture principles. We will run a six year rotation, including four years of ley so that fertility can be replenished to the land without the use of chemicals. Similarly, we use natural pest-control methods, again avoiding the use of chemicals.

In Jan 2010 we were given a grant by the Big Lottery Fund's Local Food scheme to run Grow Your Own, a community vegetable growing scheme. This grant paid for some of the infrastructure on the land, and also pays wages to Becky and Keith for one day a week. Grow Your Own is open to the public on Fridays, for people to come and volunteer in exchange for vegetables. We normally have a few open days/public events through the year, too. Volunteers and visitors are welcome at other times by prior arrangement.

Greengrow does not tolerate discrimination on grounds such as race, colour, ethnic or national origin, gender, marital or civil partnership status, disability, sexual orientation, age, religion or beliefs.

Meet the Workers

  • Hello! I'm Greengrow's volunteer co-ordinator and our wwoofer contact too. It's my job to make sure people feel welcome when they come and volunteer with us; try and find them a range of interesting and useful jobs; and make sure they take away their share of vegetables at the end of the day. I also do the pick and delivery on Fridays - that's the Ilketshall St Andrew and Ringsfield round - and currently have responsibility for growing the salad crops and looking after the polytunnels. I am also learning more about fruit growing, and have been part of grafting our fruit trees, developing the orchards and soft fruit areas.

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