Gardening goodness to stay fit...

Margaret Mundie in allotment.
Margaret Mundie in allotment.

Eating healthier meals with more fruit and vegetables are two goals that many of us often try to achieve.

Now, Linlithgow and District Allotment Society (LADAS) is combining both by enabling people to grow their own produce.

And it is hosting an open day this Sunday (August 31) to help people better understand the benefits.

The event will help people find out more about allotments and, if they are interested, discover if any suitable sites are available.

Plant expert Billy Carruthers will be on hand to give advice on choosing plants and there will be children’s activities on offer too.

Allotments across the country have been experiencing growing interest and LADAS’ approximate 75 allotments are proving popular.

Society member Margaret Mundie believes this is due to people not having the space to grow produce in their own gardens.

Margarent, who runs her own own home interiors business, was in that situation herself and said that while costs can be higher than buying from a supermarket, you can’t put a price on growing your own. “It’s a very good feeling,” she said.

Alloment-holders use their produce and the excess is sold via local stores like Taste cafe and deli on Linlithgow High Street, which is receiving a good response.

The profits are then reinvested by the society, which is now trying to raise funds to help fund measures like rabbit-proof fencing.

As for home-grown produce, Margaret said: “It’s not always going to look nice and packaged, like it is in the supermarket, but the taste is an awful lot better.”

She added that no pesticides or artificial fertilisers were used.

It also helps get people interested in eating locally produced fruit and vegetables.

Growing your own food promotes a healthy lifestyle, reduces food miles and helps achieve greater general sustainability.

The society, which was founded in 2008, secured land after writing to local landowners asking if they would consider allotments, and receiving a positive reply from Oakwell Children’s Nursery at Philpstoun.

The open day is taking place between noon and 3pm at the site just outside Philpstoun.