About us

Earthed Up! is a collectively managed non-profit workers co-operative based in Belper, Derbyshire, since 2021.

All workers are invited to be members, all members are directors. We are recruiting for members: Ryan Sandford-Blackburn is a founding member.

Event dates

Please contact us if you know of somewhere you think it’d be good for us to be in 2023.

Plant sale, our garden at Belper Lane End, Saturday 25 February 2023, 11-2.

Belper Plant Fair, Sunday 14 May 2023 10-3.

Growing

A close up photo of a Good King Henry perennial vegetable

We grow and sell our own plants, stocked from our gardens. Our plant range includes perennials herbs, vegetables, and fruit.

We also sell a small variety of seeds and books.

We grow our plants and gardens without the use of harmful chemicals. We don’t use peat anywhere.

For potting, we have been using Melcourt peat free compost, incorporating biochar, with charcoal from a local woodland. We sell plants bareroot in winter and some stock bareroot in Spring too, with the rest potted.

Soil Health Range

We sell Dalefoot and SylvaGrow peat free composts and deliver locally.

We craft a range of other Soil Health products, including biochar and natural plant feed.

Education

We are running courses, offer garden consultations and talks for groups.

Soil Health Clubs launch in 2023 – your opportunity to explore composting and other similar techniques to care for soil and reduce waste.

The Learn page has full details.

Where to find us

We grow at 2 different small rented sites in the Belper area.

By appointment only, you can collect orders from our patch at Belper Lane End, near The Bulls Head pub DE56 2DL. Please e-mail to arrange.

what3words address: ///stages.endearing.surveyed

Map of Belper Lane End patch

Support us – our loanstock offer

Loanstock is a way for us as a registered co-operative society to raise investment. We are seeking loanstock as a young business to be able to pay workers and grow the business to meet our mission and aims.

A loanstock scheme is essentially a bond scheme whereby people who want to support a co-operative lend money and can choose to receive a small interest on the investment.

Find more details on our loanstock opportunity page. Please e-mail if you’d like to be sent our business plan and financial projections with the view to apply for loanstock.

Want to learn more about what we do? You’re always welcome to get in touch! Or read on.

Our vision

With our contribution, people are enabled to regenerate land that they have stewardship over, and themselves.

Our Mission

Broaden the horizons of people, by sharing the benefits and possibilities of edible and useful plants. Develop a flourishing agroecological plant nursery. To make healthy plants accessible locally.

Our Aims

  • Operate ethically/equitably, continually talk about what is fair
  • Help to mitigate against the impact of climate change, build resilience and champion biodiversity through low and zero carbon practises
  • Educate in the benefits and possibilities of edible and useful plants
  • Provide inspiration for a regenerative culture/approach, including the use of permaculture design and forest gardening
  • Give away a % of stock for community planting
  • Provide a living wage for employees
  • Develop our understanding and skills and work in the way that suits us as individuals.
  • Create beautiful spaces to provide for our families and friends
  • Promote positive mental, physical, emotional and planetary health through our work practises and processes.
  • Remove organisational barriers to enable increased access for marginalised people

Our story

The seed of an idea

The business formed in 2020, with four people who had formed friendships through a common love of growing food in a way that respects the environment. Belper permaculture network had brought us together.

The East Midlands needs a source of healthy, edible and useful perennial plants. Inspired by Cool Temperate nursery and the decades of work by Phil Corbett, on seeing his steady journey into retirement, we set about adding to the offering.

We have much appreciation for Ali, Katie and Rob, who helped form the first shape of our business, from the get go. Also to Jennie who helped at a critical time. Thank you for your work.

Resilience in co-operation

In the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic, post-lockdown, from the start we found ways to work together to grow plants and the business. We haven’t been held back by the pandemic, with the majority of our work and all sales being outside.

In the first year, we registered as a co-operative society, sold around 500 plants and 400 bags of high quality peat-free compost. We attended local markets and events, hosted our own sales, and launched an online shop. We had many, many enthusing conversations with people about plants, gardens and food and medicine.

The end of 2021 saw changes in membership and as we start 2022 we have solid foundations and are going from strength to strength. Through co-operation, we have strength and resilience.

Why a workers co-operative?

We are a registered society – a legal form to register a business. We operate as a workers co-operative, meaning our members are those who work for us. The workers co-own the business. Profits are reinvested in the business to meet our mission. We also collectively manage the business, with a flat structure.

From Co-operatives UK: “There are seven co-operative principles that define how a co-op operates:

  1. A co-op is owned and controlled by its members. It exists for the benefit of its members, who may be customers, workers, suppliers or the wider community.
  2. A co-op is democratic – this means every member has an equal say in how it’s run and how profits are used.
  3. Every member contributes financially in some way – from buying products, working for the co-op, investing in it or deciding how to spend its profits.
  4. A co-op is an independent business, owned and controlled by its members.
  5. It offers education and training to everyone involved, so they can develop the co-op and promote the benefits of co-operation.
  6. It co-operates, works with and supports other co-ops.
  7. A co-op supports the communities it works with.”