Welcome to the SRT blog No. 12

10th July 2020 – Welcome to our blog post No. 12

The moment you have all been waiting for:
Results of the animal naming and colouring competition
Earlier on in lockdown one of the kits we sent to you included horticultural and nature inspired, identification activities as well as a set of animal images for you to colour in and then name. The aim being to give great names to the animals we now have at the newly developed Northchurch site. They have all developed amazing characters so we will all have great fun deciding which animal suits which name best.

1. Goldie by Guy
2. Suzie by Ellen Curran
3. Ratchet by Lucy Rankin
4. Clara – named by donation

PIGS – double barrelled as we had some great names
1. Rocky-waddles by Michael Letts & Matthew Bolitho-Jones
2. Yenta by Henry Hammond
3. Tucci-pigstar by Chloe Turner & Ellen Fermont
4. Purdy by Izzy

1. Ben by Johnny Parker
2. Merlin by Clare Manley
3. Gustav by George Wheway
4. Valentine – named via donation



Blackcurrants are just dripping off the bushes at the Activity Centre so here’s how Rebecca used them on July 6th – how fresh is that jam?! #shoplocal

• Carefully picked early on in the day
• Added to the sugar in the jam pan and taken to a rolling boil to thicken, stirring regularly – so has to be watched
• Jarred and sealed, with no spills
• Sunnyside own labels added
• Here’s the finished result



We received a super set of ‘thank you cards’ from St Mary’s CE Primary School Association, Northchurch after members of the Northchurch team tidied their daffodil field after flowering and when the leaves had died down, adding energy back into the daffodil bulbs for next year.

*Bedding Plants* are now 50p a pot. They were £1.50 and we still have a good choice of plants available at Hemel Food Garden open 10 until 3pm Monday to Saturday. Pop along this weekend to add to your garden displays – perfect timing with better weather on its way!



Lots of our bedding is grown for some of the Dacorum Borough Council sites around the community, brightening up the local area in troughs and the beautiful walled garden at Gadebridge Park, Hemel Hempstead.



Henry Holland-Hibbert and his wife, Kate took a socially distanced tour of Sunnyside. They were very welcome guests and took the time to get to know our work and the sites






And then there is the recognition that we have received for the work we have done over the last few months and it goes to all the team, trainees and volunteers who have gone the extra mile in these challenging times – we thank you!
Heroes of Hertfordshire https://www.highsheriffofhertfordshire.org.uk/
a joint initiative between the High Sheriff and the Lord-Lieutenant.

The allotments are all producing lots of fruit & veg now so easy to get your 5 a day… freshly picked and for sale at Sunnyside Farmshop and going into the veg boxes from Northchurch. Last week these included lots of kale, spinach, cavolo nero, blackcurrants, redcurrants, gooseberries and raspberries

even the goats think they look totally yummy

Georges’ ‘Broad Beans’ are flowering and it won’t be long before they will be ready to pick.

Northchurch have been busy making new compost bays out of old pallets and they spotted another new resident in the wildlife area…a lizard.

They feed on small invertebrates such as flies, grasshoppers and spiders. They are fast moving and agile and therefore, can catch a range of prey – so the wildlife area is perfect for them.



A couple of weeks ago there was a piece about the perennials project we have been working on with Tom Stuart-Smith, renowned landscape designer. Last week he popped into Hemel Food Garden to take a look at the display put together by Jules & the team.

As the #RHSHamptonCourt Iconic Horticultural Hero, Tom has designed a Feature Garden which you’ll be able to see at next year’s RJS Hampton Court Garden festival.
‘In the video below, Tom talks about the climate-resilient planting of meadow perennials he will feature in the display, working with a team of apprentices at @sunnysideruraltrustcharity, a charity offering training and work experience to vulnerable people, who are helping to grow the herbaceous plants for the garden.’
Tom also takes you on a tour of his own garden and shares how using contrast between structure and biodiverse, colourful planting has influenced his designs for @rhsbridgewater – our 5th garden which opens in 2021.’

Who can you spot from Sunnyside making an appearance?


The Sunnyside Up Farm Shop has had a change around inside, moving all the shelves towards the front doors so that customers can see everything, maintaining social distancing for them and everyone working in the shop.






The café remains closed at the moment but is offering takeaways.

Kealey’s busy preparing our popular toasted sandwiches (look at all that grated ‘Wobbly Bottom’ cheese) and Rebecca’s using the new ‘eco boiler’ urn to make takeaway teas.

Enjoy your cuppa and have a great week…..