The Grove goes green

St. David’s school children help The Grove go green fingered for Climate Challenge

Our St David's pub has gone green fingered to reduce its carbon footprint - and is getting a local primary school to pitch in on the patch.

The Grove on High Street is taking to the trowel and planting vegetables, herbs and flowers in its garden and has handed over part of it to children from nearby Ysgol Bro Dewi Church in Wales Primary School.

The Brains pub and hotel, which is taking part in the Welsh Assembly Government’s Climate Change Challenge, hopes the home grown organic crops will make a contribution towards lessening its carbon footprint by reducing the number of visits lorry drivers have to make to the deliver produce.

Pupils at the Nun Street school have been studying the environment this term and snapped up The Grove’s offer to transfer classroom learning to the great outdoors. Youngsters and staff met with a water-saving expert for tips on how to be green while tending to the garden.

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Rhian Morris, Water Efficiency Campaign Manager, Welsh Water said: "We are delighted to be lending our expertise to this challenge. Using water wisely is one of the everyday activities we can all do to help manage the effects of climate change."

"There are lots of things you can do in the garden to save water. Watering plants at night or early in the morning avoids the sun evaporating the water and you should always check the weather forecast before watering in case rain is on the way. Consider buying plants that don’t need much watering and use a hand held hosepipe or water can instead of a garden sprinkler – a sprinkler uses as much water in one hour as a typical family uses in the house in two days."

Contract partners Aqualogic has installed four water butts in the pub garden, installed monitoring equipment and surveyed the pub making recommendations on ways they can save water and also save money on their bills.

James Hogarth Jones, chef at The Grove said: "We’ve got a huge garden at the pub which our customers love to sit in and soak up the St. David’s sunshine. But we use so many vegetables and herbs in the kitchen that we thought it was time to put the garden to another use.

"We’re going to plant anything that will grow in our climate from runner beans, carrots, potatoes, onions and garden peas to the full range of herbs. We try to use fresh produce wherever possible in the kitchen and I can’t wait to get the first batch of crops on the chopping board.

"Food tastes better fresh and we’ll be able to get greens from the ground to plate in minutes. We’ll also have fresh flowers which we will use throughout to brighten up the pub, restaurant and hotel."

Mr Griffiths, the Head Teacher at Ysgol Bro Dewi Church in Wales Primary School said: "The project fitted in perfectly with the school's science work and it’s great that pupils will be learning from direct experience of growing plants and looking after the garden."

Pupils Ben Syrett and Robin Martin Smith, both nine, said: "We really love gardening, especially when we get lots of lovely veg to eat."