Volunteer discusses Garden Partners scheme

Being without a greenhouse or outdoor space does not mean people have to sacrifice their outdoor hobby thanks to a new scheme – and now one participant has discussed her experience.

Age Concern and Wandsworth council joined together to launch the Garden Partners programme where individuals can volunteer to give the elderly a green-fingered helping hand with their lawns, plants and vegetable patches.

Ruth Joad, aged 42 from Battersea, has been helping 60-year-old Diane Stewart and told thisislondon.com she got involved with the initiative because she lives in a flat without a garden.

While studying a horticulture qualification, Ms Joad was keen to put what she had learnt into practice.

"Diane and I are very different – shes a little more alternative … but I think we are getting on really well," she told the news provider. "She doesnt know much about gardening, so hopefully I can teach her a little as we go along."

Graham Mackenzie from NHS Wandsworth noted it is an innovative project, adding gardening is a great way to improve fitness and diet.

People who fancy helping their neighbours, friends or family with their outdoor space might fancy planting strawberries in their greenhouse for the summer months.