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Heritage Homestead Project

Heritage Homestead Project is based at
Middleton Hall Care Home in Uphall.

The project is founded by Smile as part of their 2024 Health & Wellbeing Program called Grow'Along
making gardening available to all.

Supported By West Lothian VSG

Introduction

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Smile is honored to be working with head gardener of Middleton Hall and the Smile Centre activities staff to write a Grow Along Project that allows everyone the opportunity to experience and benefit from garden therapy.

Grow along gives people the opportunity to take part in a variety of different gardening projects, sowing, planting, pruning, harvesting, preserving and crafting as well as sensory, medicinal and wildlife gardening. 

In the early 1700 Middleton Hall was well known for its lush grounds and extensive range of homegrown produce. 

This is something that the residents of Middleton Hall hope to achieve again.

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With decades of practical experience Vicky Kidd,
Gardener of Middleton Hall Care Home
prepares the grounds for the residents
to start homesteading.

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January 2024

The Beginning
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Garden Clean Up

Composting

Preparing for Spring

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Vicky also gathers vegetable and fruit peeling, teabags, cardboard boxes and eggshells
to help prepare healthy compost
for the year ahead.

The fallen leaves are kept for compost as leaves contain nutrients that plants need to support their growth.

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OPENING WORKSHOP

The air was full of the smell of herbs and soil at
Grow Alongs opening workshop.
The atmosphere in the Smile Centre was buzzing

with the sound of garden chitter chatter,

interesting stories about past gardening experiences 

and ideas for the future fulled the room with excitement.

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Over the next few weeks while the weather is cold indoor gardening will be in full bloom.

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January isn't always the best month to start gardening especially in Scotland,
but for the residents of Middleton Hall its the start of new beginnings.

Grow Along weekly workshops allow people to meet other keen gardener's and share their knowledge, ideas and experience.

  Vicky also hosts one to one gardening therapy sessions for people
to do window sill gardening in their rooms.

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After a few days of sowing seeds around the home and a very successful Grow Along Workshop ~ the new pots head to the greenhouse.
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Snow drops appear through frost covered soil today & daffodils peek towards the sun,
its cold crisp and windy and storms are forecast soon.

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The North Wind Doth Blow ~ January Storms !
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January storms hit Heritage Homestead hard,
all of the hard work done by the residents
was ruined when the greenhouse
was blown to bits by the storm. 

Pot plants tumble in the wind,
seeds were lost and plant pots broken.
Seventy percent of the planting
was destroyed!


 

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The Best Gifts Are Tied With Heart Strings
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After posting pictures of the storms aftermass,
Grow Along Project would like to thank the family & friends of Middleton Hall, Smile and Broxburn Uphall Gardening Society who all worked together to help fund and replace everything that was lost.
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At the bottom of the garden,
where the tennis courts use to be,
an old brick well sits in the sunlight,
underneath a tall pine tree.

The snowdrops sparkle in the frost
the daffodils are starting to show
while crocus bulbs hide in the ground
till the grass says goodbye to the snow.

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A very blustery February has arrived
and everyone is staying warm inside
repotting and repairing from the storms.


 

What a difference a week can make,
this week we have come back
stronger than ever before.

With support from our new friends
and helpers it has allowed us to 
grow and bloom.


 

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During the month of February the Smile Centre theme is valentines,
this is to help people identify the time of year.

Having an active garden gives us the luxury of fresh roses
to make our own beauty care products
 for 
hairdressing, pamper & sensory activities.  
 

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February's week two Grow Along Workshop 
is a rose themed "making memories"
Valentines photoshoot.

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Roses fresh & dried
enhance the rooms colour & smell
triggering happy memories. 

 

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February week three Grow Along Workshop
is a friends and family event in
The Smile Centre for Valentines.

Heart shaped bird seed 
fat balls are great for birds,
when the garden is frozen.
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Once the fresh roses are over
Vicky dries each flower 
for future projects.

 
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February Week4 Grow Along Class
is preparing spring Gardening Boxes.


 
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Smile will be donated to local nursery
and school children so they can join us  
with this years grow along project.
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Daffodils & Crocus,
are starting to show.
While this little primula
is on a go slow.




 
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Saffron is a rare and popular spice, made from dried crocus stigma.
 
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Spring Planting
Thank you Dr Alison from Stirling University 
for donating a artichoke tubers
for this weeks grow along project.
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The Jerusalem artichoke also called wild sunflower, 
is a species of Sunflower native to
central North America.
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Spring Planting

Onion Sets

Tubers & Bulbs

Building Planters



 

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March Week One
Herb Planting Workshop
mint, basil & rosemary.

 
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Building Planters

Wheelchair accessible


 

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Smile would like to thank  The Volunteer Sector Gateway
for providing funding for wood for Lynn & Vicky to build
raised planters for Middleton Hall Residents
.

 
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Wheelchair Planters
all ready for spring planting.
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Still Life
Art Class
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March Week Two ~ Still Life Art Class 
Home grown art allows people who 
can't get out to the garden to enjoy its beauty in other ways.
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Proudly Supported By Smile
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Like all flowers
not everyone flourishes in groups.

 
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121 Flower Pressing Art
is very peaceful and relaxing
for people who enjoy quiet time.
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