Phil receives funds to let garden grow

Phil Salina with development cleaner Maria Speirs (left) and development manager Sharon McLean as he gets the funds to continue his garden at Baillie Court
Phil Salina with development cleaner Maria Speirs (left) and development manager Sharon McLean as he gets the funds to continue his garden at Baillie Court

A 75-year-old man, who transformed a small disused patio area at his sheltered housing complex into a garden, has been awarded funding from Gardening for Disabled Trust.

Green-fingered Phil Salina, who has lived at Hanover Scotland’s Baillie Court in Motherwell for more than 10 years, has received £300 to help him continue to grow his prized fruit and vegetable patch.

Mr Salina only started the garden six years ago after he and another resident decided to make use of an empty patio space outside their housing complex.

Since then the space has been transformed into a garden producing a variety of fruit and vegetables.

Mr Salina regularly sets up a table of his healthy produce in Baillie Court’s communal living area for his neighbours to enjoy and only asks for a small donation to help towards the cost of containers, compost and seeds.

While this has helped him to cultivate a selection of delicious and healthy products, it recently became clear that extra funding would be needed to help him continue to grow the garden.

The funding he has received from the Gardening for Disabled Trust has made this possible and will allow him to purchase vital gardening equipment and a greater variety of seeds and bulbs.

The funding from Gardening for Disabled Trust was awarded in recognition of the benefits reaped from Mr Salina’s horticulture project by both him and other residents at his Hanover Scotland sheltered housing development.

The exercise and mental stimulation from his gardening work helps to alleviate his symptoms of arthritis, while the distribution of his freshly grown fruit and vegetables to Baillie Court residents mean that the positive impacts of his gardening project are felt by others around him.

Mr Salina said: “Gardening has been a great way for me to pass my time while helping to keep me active. I am very grateful to the Gardening for Disabled Trust for their funding as it will allow me to buy much needed supplies to continue growing my garden.”

Sharon McLean, Hanover Scotland’s development manager at Baillie Court, added: “Over the last six years Mr Salina has transformed the space into a flourishing garden, growing fruit and vegetables for everyone at Baillie Court to enjoy.

“This well-deserved funding from the Gardening for Disabled Trust is testament to the benefits his project brings to both his own health and to other residents at the development.”

Justine Stringer from the Gardening for Disabled Trust, said: “As a tiny, volunteer-only organisation that gives away everything raised, Gardening for Disabled Trust is delighted to help Mr Salina keep actively gardening. Our ongoing work aims to raise more money to help people like Mr Salina.”

For more information about the trust visit www.gardeningfordisabledtrust.org.uk.