There are still a few places available on Graham Burnett’s Introduction to Permaculture weekend at Dial House in Essex, but book fast to avoid disappointment!

Dates: Sat 6 – Sun 7 September 2014

Venue: Dial House, North Weald, near Epping, Essex

Led by: Graham Burnet (Dip Perm Des)

Details: Held at the idyllic setting of Dial House in West Essex, home to the political punk band CRASS, this residential weekend workshop can either be considered as a ‘stand alone’ introduction to Permaculture ethics, principles and design, or else can be a lead-in to the more in depth full 72 hour Permaculture Design Course. The weekend is led by experienced permaculture teacher Graham Burnett (author and illustrator of ‘Permaculture- a Beginners Guide’, Trustee of the Permaculture Association (Britain) and holder of the Diploma in Permaculture Design).

Accommodation: Camping in the Dial House gardens. You are welcome to arrive on the Friday evening (after 18.00 please) to put up your tent and get settled plus join in for a bit of a social session. There may be VERY LIMITED places to stay inside the house; please contact Graham for details or to enquire about availability.
- See more at: http://spiralseed.co.uk/products-page/product-category/introduction-to-permaculture-weekend-with-graham-burnett-dial-house-essex-6-7-september-2014-2/#sthash.4YYhAMfN.dpuf

Southend in Transition Community Allotment – Serious Business

The pictures below were taken by Fiona Clapperton during their Work Day on Saturday 2 August.

The magnificent pumpkin was the first to be harvested. There is a bit of special significance to pumpkins as Kamil used one of his own as a prop at the Southend Soup last October where the allotment was the successful winner of the funds. Now they have one grown on the plot and they are in need of funds again. [Read more...]

SE Essex Seed Potato Day 2015

Saturday 21 February, 10.00am to 2.00pm

At Growing Together, 47 Fairfax Drive, Southend-on-Sea SS0 9AG (corner of Fairfax Drive and Prittlewell Chase)

Over 30 varieties of seed potato (some organic) sold individually at 15p per tuber, plus some onion sets.

Please check website for updates – http://seeog.org.uk/

Free Admission – Refreshments available

Soil Association: New study finds significant differences between organic and non-organic food

Peter Melchett, Policy Director, has some important news to share: a ground breaking study due to be published next week in the British Journal of Nutrition will reveal that organic fruit, vegetables and cereals contain significantly higher concentrations of antioxidants and lower levels of pesticides.


The research found significant differences, due to the farming system, between organic and non-organic food, such as:

More of the good, less of the bad: Organic crops and processed foods (such as bread, baby food, fruit juice and wine) have more desirable antioxidants/(poly)phenolics and less potentially harmful heavy metal and pesticide residues than their non-organic counterparts.
Reduction in pesticides: Organic food consumption can reduce exposure to synthetic pesticide residues – the study found pesticide residues occur four times more frequently in non-organic compared with organic crops.
Organic IS different: the new study clearly shows that there are meaningful nutritional differences between organic and non-organic food. While 5 a day should be the starting point for everyone, this means that if your daily intake of fruit and veg is organic, you will be eating the equivalent – in anti-oxidant terms – of one or two additional portions of fruit or veg every day! Find out more about why organic crops are different here.


One of the easiest ways to buy organic is to sign up to a local veg box scheme. Find your nearest Soil Association certified local veg box provider on their website to make your five a day really count.


A booklet containing everything you need to know about this organic study is also available to download now from their website.


Although this study is a landmark moment for the Soil Association, there is still more to do – they are faced with the huge challenge of providing better nutrition, for more people, while reducing their impact on the environment and their use of natural resources.

P.S. Peter Melchett will be discussing this exciting research on Sunday 20 July with Tom Heap on Countryfile at 6pm – don’t miss it!

Friday 11 July 2014