His Royal Highness has taken many steps personally to live in a more sustainable way.
Here are just some of the many ways the gardens are managed with the strictest sustainable principles:
- The Highgrove Gardens cover 15 acres in total – all of them organic.
- Wood pellet fired boilers (biomass) to heat Highgrove House, The Orchard Tea Room, stables and offices.
- Most of the electricity is sourced from a renewable energy supplier and from solar panels, which is on the farm barns. The electricity is used in Highgrove House and the Orchard Tea Room.
- Ground source heat pumps to heat the staff cottages and the green houses, and an air source heat pump to heat the Gardeners’ Mess and some of the workshops.
- A specially built reed bed sewage system, much loved by dragonflies at its treatment end, is used for all Highgrove’s waste.
- Gutter rainwater is collected into tanks and used in the toilets in the Orchard Tea Room. The rainwater is also used to irrigate the garden.
- The gardeners make their own compost and leaf mould.
- A willow “ramp” is placed in each water feature to provide an easy exit in case any wildlife inadvertently fall in.
- 200 chickens roam areas of the Estate under a mixed range of fruit trees. From these hens around 4,200 eggs are collected every year. The eggs are used in the Orchard Tea Room restaurant and sold in the Highgrove Shop.
- There are two fountains in the garden providing running, open water for birds throughout the year.
- The Highgrove Estate is also the location of Home Farm, a centre of excellence for organic farming.