Green Fingers at St Augustine’s Priory
‘Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness’
(From ‘To Autumn’ by John Keats)
When the community of Augustinian Canonesses Regular of the Lateran moved into St Augustine’s Priory with their pupils over one hundred years ago they strove to be as self-sufficient as possible. The nuns’ part of the grounds was devoted to this, from keeping a pig, to growing vegetables, to tending the orchard; they cared for the grounds which blossomed under their care.
We still enjoy the fruits of the orchard and, in recent years, have kept chickens. However, this year, after only one season, the fruits of the St Augustine’s Priory allotment have been abundant! Planted by the girls, and organically grown, the allotment has produced, among other items, tomatoes, courgettes, kale, sweetcorn, carrots and beetroot.
When ready for harvest our crops were harvested by the pupils ready to sell to parents. Sales of these vegetables, together with apples from the orchard, have been held this term on Friday afternoons in the Prep Playground. The first sale, on 9th September, raised a wonderful £108.50, which will go towards buying plants and seeds.
Mr M Klein, an Augustinian parent and member of the Parents’ Committee has been pivotal in the development of the allotment, giving his time and labour and encouraging the girls to grow green fingers!
He comments, ‘The allotment has already been a great success in its first season with some very tasty produce grown which has been planted and harvested by the girls. The girls have been full of enthusiasm and have shown great team work with some girls gardening for the very first time and other girls already having allotment experience. It’s also the place where the nuns used to have their allotment many years ago so it’s great to bring it back and get the whole school involved with developing every bit of the amazing grounds we have!’
Thank you to Mr Klein and his colleagues, who have sown the seeds of some budding gardeners!
Categories: Junior Prep Senior The Association Whole School