Spring Bulb Project

Spring Bulb Project

Promoting & delivering Spring Bulb kits to local residents to give them something to tend to & watch grow through winter months

Benefits of gardening

Exposure to green space can have a positive effect on both physical and mental health. Studies have shown that gardening can reduce depression and anxiety and local green space has been linked to improved mental health and wellbeing. For older people, gardening can be a useful source of physical activity, while supporting independence and reducing loneliness. Living in areas with green spaces is associated with less income-related health inequality, weakening the effect of deprivation on health. Urban green spaces can contribute to social cohesion but the quality and maintenance of green spaces is important to make them appealing.


Chorlton, Whalley Range and Fallowfield

Project team

Laura Cassidy (buzz)

Manchester Urban Diggers


To promote and deliver Spring Bulb kits to isolated residents so that they may have a project to watch grow through the winter.


"Feedback from folk who had bulbs was very positive. C., age 76 said it got her outside to plant them, and she had something on her window ledge to watch grow. B. age 86 told me each time I knocked on her door , how big they were growing and described the flowers as they appeared. For someone like her who is only going out once or twice a week it was a real conversation starter, not just with me but with friends and family on the phone! J. age 65 who has had depression for a long-time said they lifted her spirits to see them growing.” – staff member working with older residents in Fallowfield

“Having moved to Whalley Range only a month before the first lockdown, my usual search for community & social opportunities for older people was curtailed. My first contact with Buzz was when I met Laura in the carpark of my HA Scheme and she offered me & my neighbour our Spring Bulb Kits .... Everything I needed was there - the perfect starter kit (although I wish the instructions had been a bit simpler!). It was kinda messy but I knew that I was actually making something good happen. My neighbour, with her grandson-gardener, and I had to wait for a little while but soon we saw signs of growth and were proud to share our success with photos to Laura. The first bulbs to bloom were the hyacinths, different colours and lovely scents on my kitchen window sill; success and feel-good amid all the surrounding sad pandemic news. The other bulbs are taking their time but as we get nearer to Spring, I'm sure they'll bloom to remind us of the good stuff again.” – Whalley Range residents

"The paperwhite is absolutely beautiful, magic! The white iris is breaking through and it is delightful. The perfume is gorgeous, they have been so successful. The quality of they hyacinths is superb. This has been my hobby for life, I was self taught with my husband, we used to show flowers at shows like Tatton. These bulbs have been a peep into what I had with my husband” – Chorlton resident


People who have received the kits have been very positive about the benefits of taking part in the project. It has been nice for them to watch something grow and have a splash of colour in the dark winter months.

Strategic links to local/national policies



Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Supports older people

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Reduces income-related health inequalities

Fair Society, Healthy Lives (Institute of Health Equity, 2010)

Improves local area

Our Manchester Strategy

Increased social cohesion

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health, 2014)

Can be used for social prescribing

General Practice Forward View (NHS England, 2016)

Research/evidence base

Public Health England (2020) Improving Access to Greenspace: A new review for 2020

Houlden et al (2018) The relationship between greenspace and the mental wellbeing of adults: A systematic review PLoS One, 13 (9)

The King’s Fund (2016) Gardens and Health: Implications for policy and practice

World Health Organization (2016) Urban Green Spaces and Health: A review of evidence

Schmutz et al, Garden Organic and Sustain (2014) The benefits of gardening and food growing for health and wellbeing


Laura Cassidy - Neighbourhood Health Team


T. 07818 522 978

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Michelle, Cognitive Behavioural Therapist, Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust photo