Welcome to the SRT blog No. 14

24th July 2020 – Welcome to our blog post No. 14


It’s a busy time of year when so much is ready to harvest as well as needing watering and weeding.

Hemel Food Garden have harvested their red currants in the orchard  – what a crop. Vitamin ‘c’ rich will they make jam or redcurrant jelly to go with roast dinner?





Whose been picking their broad beans? Do send me photos of what you are doing – we love to see them. Dawn – publicity@sunnysideruraltrust.org.uk


Northchurch have had an electric fence installed around the perimeter to help protect the chickens from the foxes. They have also adopted a new cockerel who is a very handsome blonde coloured ‘leg bar’ called Rebel with a fabulous head crest and different feather colours. Interestingly leg bar chickens lay blue eggs, so we are looking into how we can produce blue eggs!

Work carried on, on the floor in the new lunch room at Northchurch. It’s the size of a dance floor so has taken a while. Ready to grout and then everyone can move back in.






Ian and Joe bought the timber and started work on the green roof at Northchurch that joins the office and the shop and will provide a sheltered, attractive and protected walkway. Work in progress – Ian’s suntan that is!!











Still lots to do before the green stuff arrives, so we will keep you up to date over the next few weeks





The veg boxes are now full of ripened tomatoes, fresh basil, lots of green and yellow courgettes and cucumbers. Grown in the poly tunnels at Northchurch but also lots coming up from the allotment space at Hemel Food Garden.


Have you done your Big Butterfly count yet? It goes on until August the 9th and best when it is really sunny.

But what’s this Need some help to identify pls.





I did mine on Tuesday and saw 18 in the 15 minutes, just on my flowering oregano, including peacocks, comma, red admiral, cabbage white, gatekeeper and tortoiseshells.


The Activity Centre did their’s yesterday across in the meadow. We counted for 15 minutes and the trainees helped to identify the species from the ID sheets. In quarter of an hour we saw 9 Large Whites, 2 Small Whites, 4 Meadow Browns, 11 Gatekeepers and 3 Red Admirals. We hope to do another survey next week in a different area on site so that we can compare the two areas. The trainees also helped to submit the results onto the Big Butterfly Count website so that their sightings can be added to the national survey.



Sharon (Ellen’s +1), Ellen Fermont, Lynn (Volunteer) /  Rebecca Campbell, Suvi




Mowing – Graham Light





We had a lovely lady who came with her garden designer to HFG. They were really wowed by our selection of home grown perennial plants. Keen to support Sunnyside and buy their plants from us – they bought 370 for the new garden, filling 2 mini buses.


Do pop down and take a look if you can – there’s quite a selection.