Gardeners with green sensibilities as well as green fingers have long turned to horse manure to make their roses bloom.

And now there is a new product on the market, courtesy of the 2,000 equines cared for by the Donkey Sanctuary.

Donkey Doo, available from the charity’s visitor centre in Sidmouth, Devon, at £7.99 a bag, promises great results for gardeners – while helping the environment.

The 1,300 tonnes of muck produced by the donkeys each year is combined with charcoal from local willow beds.

Manufacturer Geoff Self explained: “Our charcoal-burning methods mean carbon emissions are fixed into the soil, making it an easy way to offset personal carbon emissions – equivalent to a 100-mile car journey per bag.”

But the proof of the pudding is in the poop. Satisfied customer, Mary Dodson of Totnes, said Donkey Doo has made a “huge difference” to her “indifferent” soil.

“My hollyhocks grew to six feet and flowered profusely all summer,” she said.

For further information email enquiries@thedonkey sanctuary.org.

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (14 June 2012)