Welcome to the SRT blog No. 18

28th August 2020 – Welcome to our blog post No. 18

Wow, we are at the end of August already, officially the end of summer and the beginning of Autumn. The seasons are defined as spring (March, April, May), summer (June, July, August), autumn (September, October, November) and winter (December, January, February).

Other facts about August:

  • In the Southern Hemisphere, August is the seasonal equivalent of February in the Northern Hemisphere. In many European countries, August is the holiday month for most workers.
  • August’s  birthstones are the peridot (the green gem), sardonyx, and spinel.
  • Its birth flower is the gladiolus  or poppy, meaning beauty, strength of character, love, marriage and family.
  • The Western zodiac signs for the month of August are Leo (until August 21) and Virgo (from August 22 onwards)
  • It’s the eighth month of the year in the Gregorian calendar, and the fifth of seven months to have a length of 31 days. How does the saying go –

Thirty days have November,
April, June, and September.
February has 28 alone,
And all the rest have 31

This is the one I know but there are other variations on it….

  • August was originally named Sextilis in Latin since it was the sixth month in the ancient Roman calendar. The name of the month was changed to August in honour of Augustus Caesar in 8 BC.
  • The bank holiday, which unlike the Spring ones, does not represent a modern version of any, older religious festival. Maybe, in 1871,  Sir John Lubbock did choose to coincide with a key cricket match but it wasn’t until  1964 that a temporary change to the date of the August Bank Holiday from the first Monday of the month to the last, was proposed. In August 1971, the change to the last Monday was made permanent as the earlier date almost always clashed with the traditional summer two-week shut-down of the major industries.


HFG – ‘ Just resting up’ – honest –  after weeding, leaf blowing, sweeping and hedge cutting – then sweeping again on an outside contract.

Beautiful colours of begonias planted up in the pots next to the outside space at the Sunnyside Up Café & Farm Shop.

Hemel Food Garden have taken delivery of 15 rescued chickens and they have settled in beautifully with the current ladies. And within 3 hours the green team had collected the 8, newly lain eggs.







Here’s a few photos from the Activity Centre this week.

The first onions have been harvested – have they counted how many – looks like a bumper crop this year! Lain out, in the greenhouse, on the metal staging in lovely lines and not overlapping, so that they all get some sun and plenty of air around them to dry them out.

The signs that it’s time to harvest onions are:

  • Pull any onions that send up flower stalks; this means that the onions have stopped growing.
  • When onions start to mature, the foliage tops become yellow and begin to fall over. When tops are brown, dig up the onions.
  • Loosen the soil around the bulbs to encourage drying.
  • Be sure to harvest in late summer, before cool weather.

Roxy Simmons is busy using her creative skills in the woodshed. Using a ‘dremel’ rotary tool to make some new signposts for around the site.

Annette Timms & Rebecca Campbell are helping to weed and tidy the lawn area. Laughing as they work.


Northchurch have also added to the flock.

Nigel is moving in the new members, keeping an eye on them and checking how they have settled in. All good.












Bottles of Apple Juice are again, available at your Hemel Food Garden, Sunnyside Up Café & Farm Shop. We have updated the label, along the lines of the jam and chutney design, and added the barcode label so that we don’t have to add another label to the bottle. Looking very sleek and GREEN.

With the winds we have had recently there have been lots of windfall apples so the Sunnyside Up Café have had *scrumptious* – homemade apple cake. Open Monday to Saturday 10 until 3pm with outside seating or for takeaway.














Enjoy your bank holiday, whatever you are up to! Do send me some photos of your activities.