Oxford City Council is set to support eight community based gardening projects with grants of almost £4,000.
Under the new Oxford in Bloom scheme, residents, children and volunteers will all be given opportunities to improve access to wild flowers, vegetables, communal areas and their neighbourhoods.
Barns Place, in Blackbird Leys, is in line to receive £1,000 to enable residents to create a roof top garden aiming to attract pollinators and birds, as well as creating communal seating areas.
Incredible Edible Oxford will deliver a ‘grow your own’ project supporting residents in three different neighbourhoods to plant and grow sweetcorn, courgettes, and runner beans in grow bags.
Flowering bulbs will be planted at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery in Jericho by volunteers from the Friends of St Sepculchre’s and on the approach roundabout to Cutteslowe Park by the Harbord Road Residents Association.
Other projects set to receive money include improvements to communal gardens at Vicarage Court sheltered housing scheme, the development of a nature garden at Blackbird Leys Adventure Playground, some ‘guerrilla’ gardening in Meadow Lane and support for hanging baskets along London Road Headington.
Each of these groups will now enter into the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Thames and Chiltern competition under their expanding “It’s Your Neighbourhood” campaign.
Judging will be undertaken by RHS judges in July; results will be announced at the Thames and Chiltern awards ceremony in September.
Linda Smith, City Executive Board Member for Leisure, Parks and Sport said:
"I was delighted by the level of interest shown in this new way of running Oxford in Bloom and the Council will be supporting some fantastic community projects which I can't wait to see come to fruition.
“Oxford in Bloom is now firmly about the Council supporting local residents and community groups to roll up their sleeves and improve their local neighbourhood, while bringing people together to enjoy gardening and get closer to nature.
“We will judge the projects to be successful if they brighten up an area of the city and strengthen communities by helping neighbours to get to know each other. I'd also like to wish all the projects’ success with their entry into the RHS. It's Your Neighbourhood competition. Success there would be the icing on the cake".
Any group interested in entering The RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood (IYN) campaign can still apply. The deadline for entries is Friday 31 March.