Green-fingered Staffin pupils dig in for national recognition

A GARDEN designed and created by Staffin schoolchildren has beaten off competition from all over Scotland to receive a national award.

The efforts of P4-7 pupils in creating a “pallet garden” has won the respect of judges at Scotland’s premier gardening event. It was a real achievement for Stafffin Primary School to have even made the shortlist as the pupils were up against hundreds of other schools.

A pallet garden is an innovative way of recycling old wooden pallets into something far more attractive using soil, shrubs and flowers. Once bedded in, the flowers grow through the pallet gaps and the small but perfectly formed gardens are very popular in small spaces or in large gardens as a feature in their own right.

Alexander Whitehead and teacher Liz Macfarlane with the Staffin Primary School pallet garden in Edinburgh.

Liz Macfarlane, a teacher at Staffin Primary School, said: “We were lucky enough to be shortlisted to this final stage from over 300 entries and at the final judging received a Commended Award for interpretation of design and attention to detail.

Ms Macfarlane and pupil Alexander Whitehead travelled to Edinburgh earlier this month to the national three-day event Gardening Scotland at the Royal Highland Centre. Unfortunately, the date clashed with the Skye Provincial Mod in Portree so the rest of the pupils could not attend.

” Alexander was the principal designer so he was very excited to be able to see the design as a finished garden,” added Ms Macfarlane. “We are going to put the garden on display at the school under the ECO flag and we’ll leave it there until the summer holidays when I’ll arrange for it to be permanently planted on the same site in a deep-raised bed.”