Welcome to the SRT blog No. 42
26th February 2021 – Welcome to our blog post No. 42
Next week it’s St Davids Day – Monday 1st March – and it feels like spring is really on it’s way.
Saint David’s Day, or the Feast of Saint David, is the feast day of the patron saint of Wales, and is always on the 1st March, the date of Saint David’s death in 589 AD.
Welsh people also wear leeks and daffodils to celebrate and eat traditional dishes like cawl. This is a soup that is made of leek and other locally grown produce and often with lamb meat.
Despite the fact his name is associated with quite a few breweries, St David was a teetotal vegetarian, who would rather plough fields himself than put a farm animal to task and advised others to abstain from drinking.
In Welsh St David’s Day is Dydd Gwyl Dewi Sant.
Hemel site will be celebrating with all things Welsh next week – serving Welsh Rarebit and welsh cakes – enjoy!
*New look* The farm shop is open again now that the floor has been finished. New display equipment has been made from old pallets – it’s amazing what you can do with an old pallet. A trestle table, shelving wall unit next to the main door and jam stand on the wheel in the middle.
The hens are laying loads of eggs at the moment as the sun is more visible and the days slightly longer.
The team are adding a chicken pen and digging the holes in preparation for the posts.
New turf arrived this week to finish off the space in front of the shop and the central ground in the courtyard behind.
Yesterday the Northchurch team took ownership of a rather large mobile caravan. Donated by the BBC after they had used it whilst filming at Micklefield Hall near Rickmansworth, it was quite a task for the driver to manoever it the 15 miles to site. And of course the last bit down the allotment drive was the most difficult part! Today it will be moved to it’s final spot and then we need to kit it out as the plan is to make it into an eco classroom.
The Activity Centre are nearing the completion of landscaping around the new growing spaces adjacent to the fruit area. They temporarily had to abandon that project as the combination of abundant rainfall with multiple foot fall was causing a lot of damage to the ground – and very muddy boots.
So attention was turned to the woodland strip behind this area as the tree canopy offers some shelter from the elements. Time is routinely turned to work in this space trying to manage the profuse swathes of ivy that threaten to dominate that area. As a result of these endeavours, they have been rewarded with an increase in wildflower diversity. Last year, a cluster of Honesty appeared for the first time that either Louise or Pete can remember.
Then to clearing fallen branches and all the assorted twigs and debris to make habitat piles. A neighbour happened to comment on how neat they were keeping the space and offered Sunnyside a contract to clear several decades of his garden waste. That is already well under way.
Louise and a small group were at Berkhamsted Civic Centre added a splash of horticultural colour to the troughs outside.
As the week resumed, the rain had not been so incessant and as a result the landscaping around the new growing spaces was completed. Using the turf, cut from the growing spaces, to raise and level numerous undulations in the former lawn to enable easier navigation for anyone with mobility issues.
As polytunnel deliveries neared completion, attention was returned to that designated space. Much work has been done to attempt to create a level playing field for ease of construction. Not an easy task when you are mostly battling clay and flint.
Wednesday saw a team attempting to install the uprights for said polytunnel. After much effort and a revision session on trigonometry from Ian the poles were sited. Actually, getting the poles driven in to the required depth was another story. Remember that clay and flint that I mentioned a few lines back? Our collective creaking backs are testimony to our efforts thus far.
Last week David made up a planted container special order which was delivered directly to a Sunnyside customer. Lovely colourful peris beris and pansies
Hemel Food Garden had their fire drill – in the sun.
Michael rescued a frog and made sure it was returned to a safe spot.
Not only is it St David’s day on Monday but it’s a BIG day for Hemel Food Garden – the community bakery building work is starting. So, exciting.
It’s going into the hanger next to the mess room and over the last few weeks lots of clearing out and tidying up has been going on so that the builders have space to work. It will be fantastic for the trainees to learn new skills and will offer employment to vulnerable young people and fresh local bread for our community, sold from our farm shops
Ella has been busy the last couple of weeks making the bird feeding kit and then the owl mask with her brother – love the colour Ella!
Last chance to buy a raffle ticket to win a fantastic hamper (ends Sunday 28th Feb). By donating £5.00 you will be buying one raffle ticket to enter. Just go to https://localgiving.org/…/sunnysi…/project/hamperraffle/
A big Sunnyside thank you and Good Luck!