Welcome to Abbey Gardens, a community garden in West Ham
surrounding part of the ruins of a
12th century abbey.

There are free garden club sessions and new gardeners are always welcome. The garden is open to visitors from dawn till dusk.


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In the garden:

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Gardening sessions take place on
Tuesdays 1pm-3pm
Thursdays 4pm-7pm
Saturdays 10am-4pm

Planting up, watering in and the big compost turn-round

On a gloriously sunny Saturday, we’ve been putting in plants, doing lots of watering and there’s been a big effort digging out the compost for mulch and refilling the compost boxes with new clearings. And there have been bees, butterflies, hoverflies, ladybirds and worms working away alongside us.

We’re just planting half of the garden this season to leave the other half of the raised beds clear for repairs. But there’s still plenty to do. Whether you’re new to gardening or an old hand, come and join in with our free drop-in Saturday gardening sessions, 1pm-5pm, tools and gloves provided.

 

New plants, new people

On a gloriously sunny Saturday we’ve been catching up with our planting, there’s been tidying, watering and discussion of the year’s events.

A big Abbey Gardens welcome to garden session leader Felicity, covering for Rosie. Another big welcome for a small visitor – young Mallory, on a first tour of the garden with her mum Marie, who’s one of our trustees. And it’s great to see School 21’s raised bed planted up and ready for Summer crops.

Fancy joining us? Our free, friendly drop-in Saturday community gardening sessions are from 1pm to 5pm, tools and gloves provided. Whether you’re a veteran gardener or starting out, whether you want an energetic job, a delicate job or just to join is for gardening chat and peaceful urban green space, you’ll be welcome too. Drop in for a while or stay for the whole session.

Saturday planting

We have a planting plan! We have seedlings! We have people! It’s been all go at the garden this Saturday, preparing raised beds for planting, adding compost and getting in some of this year’s crops.

There’s a job for everyone, from junior gardeners to grown-ups, delicate jobs, expert jobs, hefty jobs (compost shovelling, anyone?), some people pop in for a short time and some stay for the whole session.

Our free community gardening sessions are on Saturdays, from 1pm to 5pm, tools and gloves provided. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener without a plot to tend, new to the neighbourhood or you’ve often walked past and wondered what we do, drop by and say hello. You’ll be very welcome.

Community in the garden

Community gardening is as much about community as it is about the garden.

This Saturday, we had neighbours gardening, people dropping in to say hello, catch up on progress and swap knowledge, our compost queen Nancy with a map for School 21 showing the system that produces such amazing compost for the garden, we were delighted to have a visit from veteran gardener Charlie (to see the enormous milk thistle in the garden) and the whole thing was fuelled by rock buns, baked in the morning two blocks away.

Our free community gardening sessions are on Saturdays from 1pm-5pm. Drop in, help out, stop by to find out what we do or just come in to enjoy the beautiful flowers. 

Meet Rosie, our new gardening session leader

Meet our new garden session leader, Rosie Jackson!

Rosie, who also works at the wonderful Organiclea, brings horticulture and food knowledge to the garden and has a particular interest in food-growing.

Our free, drop in community gardening sessions are on Saturdays this year, from 1pm – 5pm. So whether you’re a regular gardener or new to the garden, drop by and join in. Rosie is keen to hear what we enjoy about community gardening and what we would like to grow this season.

We’re starting the season later than usual this year. So a shout-out to neighbours growing food and flower seedlings in their gardens, allotments or on balconies: if you have a few spare seedlings you can donate, we’ll be delighted to have them! Bring them along to one of our Saturday gardening sessions. You might even be in time for a cup of tea and a bun!

 

Growing Memories

Abbey Gardens is starting a potential collaboration with the project Growing Memories. They are exploring how eating habits have changed in Stratford over the years and they would love to hear from people with memories and recipes to share! Please get in touch with them via email at francis@ech.org.uk or by phone: 020 8553 3116.

Saturday gardening sessions from 4th May

Come and join us for some community gardening, from Saturday 4th May!

Our gardening sessions are on Saturdays, from 1pm-5pm. Drop in at any time during the session or stay for the afternoon.

Sessions are free, tools and gloves are provided, no experience necessary. Children are welcome to come along and garden with their parents or carers.

Abbey Gardens Annual General Meeting on Weds 24, 6:30pm-8:30pm at Manor Primary School

Abbey Gardens Annual General Meeting
On Wednesday 24 April
6:30pm-8:30pm at Manor Primary School, E15, meeting room entrance from Leywick Street

There’s lots to discuss at this year’s Annual General Meeting: new trustees, partnership opportunities, the 2019 gardening season and plenty more. Come along, hear the latest and find out how you can get involved. We will:

1 – Report on the garden in 2018.
2 – Elect new trustees as Torange Khonsari is stepping down. We have 2 new nominees.
3 – Go through finances to date and projected budget for 2019.
4 – Hear about projected developments for 2019 and key dates.

Start the season 2019

Got the gardening bug after the recent burst of Spring? Come and help get the garden ready for the season at our FREE volunteer-run community gardening sessions on Saturdays 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 March, 1pm-3pm. Come along for the whole session or drop in when you can. No experience necessary; tools and gloves provided. Children are welcome if gardening with a parent or carer.

Planning for a fruitful garden

Fruit tree pruning is highly technical stuff. It’s also strategic – you have to think about where you want the tree to go. So Karen Guthrie and Nina Pope from Somewhere, who designed the garden, followed our visioning meeting by applying some strategy to the espalier-trained fruit trees along the back wall.

It’s also been a pleasure to welcome new neighbours to our meeting, keen to get involved and bring their own stories and skills to the garden.

If you’re looking forward to getting outdoors for some Spring gardening, there will be informal Saturday volunteering sessions every Saturday in March from 1pm to 4pm, with trustee Marie Helson.

Pictured: Karen Guthrie. Nina Pope and founder member of Friends of Abbey Gardens Andreas Lang.