Students plant salad to go!

Release Date: 2 June 2016

Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch – shoppers and passers-by at the rear of the Overgate Centre, will be able to help themselves to free vegetables and herbs in future as the area is transformed into a community garden

D&A College staff and students from the horticulture unit based at Kingsway Campus are already hard at work clearing the old and out-dated flower beds and re-planting with edible shrubs and herbs.

The aim of the new public space is to encourage passers-by to help themselves to a pinch of parsley or a little lavender, even a smattering of root vegetables or even a bag of broad beans.

About 30 D&A students are involved in the project and expect to plant thousands of plants in the coming months – not all of them to be included in salads or soup however.

“Apart from the vegetables we expect to plant a couple of thousand marigolds next week!” laughed Gregor McGillivray, course leader horticulture at D&A College.

The students started the project last Month and aim to be working for about 18 months.

“We were approached by the Bonnie Dundee Group, who are committed to improving the city’s areas of natural beauty, and by representatives of the Overgate, both of whom wanted to update and improve what had become a slightly old-fashioned and tired-looking area,” said Gregor.

“Creating gardens which incorporate a help-your-self edible element seemed a great idea and we were happy to become involved.

“Taking part in live projects of this sort always has a positive impact on the student experience.”

The new public space will be called William Gardiner Square, after the Dundee-born botanist who, during the first half of the 19th century, studied mosses and was much published on his findings in the Sidlaws and Glen Esk and farther afield at Schiehallion, Ben Macdui, Lochnagar and Braemar.