LETTER: Forest gardens are the future

Forest gardens are the future

I refer to your article ‘Forest garden plan yet to win approval’ [Express, October 6]. I feel it is appropriate to voice an alternative view.

Dr John Parry’s initiative is in its very early stages. The Railway Land Wildlife Trust with its Linklater Pavilion and the adjoining nature reserve near the centre of Lewes has always been focused on creating natural wildlife habitat, biodiversity and environmental education.

Bearing this in mind, Dr Parry’s Forest Garden initiative is totally in line with this focus. It seeks to demonstrate the growing and relatively easy maintenance of various nutritious fruit and nut trees and shrubs – something that people can replicate in quite small plots.

This would be in harmony with nature, wildlife and people – and should not be something separate as suggested by the article.

In many countries agro-forestry and forest gardening are raising awareness of ways to grow food for the future, in the light of climate change and the destruction of natural resources worldwide. It is well documented that forest gardens increase biodiversity, and that it can help to alleviate the emerging food crisis which is starting to be identified.

A demonstration forest garden allows one to learn ways to ease long term food insecurity, to replicate growing for the future and to prepare for new tastes. Lewes thinks global and acts local. And we all need to think future – something the Railway Land Project has championed for many years.

There is so much to share about the need for forest gardening. There is a great opportunity to hear from the experts, right here in Lewes at the launch event for the National Forest Gardens Scheme organised by Dr Parry and others at 11.30am on Saturday [October 21] at the Linklater Pavilion. Tickets £15 from Eventbrite include a seasonal lunch.

Sharifin Gardiner

Ashfodon House, Rodmell

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