A Good Scythe at Work

My name is Beth Tilston and I am a scything tutor.  I am writing to gauge your interest in joining forces to run a one or two day scything course in your area either before the end of October this year or from May onwards next year (due to grass growth).  Scything, as I am sure you know, is a way of cutting grass and weeds using a blade and human power rather than power tools such as strimmers and lawnmowers.  A scythe is useful for lawns, allotments, community orchards – all the way to meadows and mountainsides.  I am looking for appropriate areas in which to run courses.  An appropriate area would be somewhere which had access to a reasonable amount of grass which isn’t regularly mown short, plus somewhere with nettles, docks, thistles etc to provide variety. I teach groups of up to six and can work with another tutor for larger groups.  I provide all the equipment (including safety equipment) necessary and am fully insured.  I am also available to do demonstrations. The course will cover:  The history and uses of a scythe, how to set up your scythe, health and safety when using edge tools, how to scythe grass and weeds and keeping your blade sharp by peening and honing. Please email me at bethtilston@googlemail.com bethtilston.com   … [Read more…]

Leigh-on-Sea Allotment & Leisure Garden Association

High Summer ‘Get Together’ at the new clubhouse Sunday 14 August, starting at 1.00pm Hot food, refreshments, BYO drinks, raffle prizes with ticket, plant and produce swap, and sell by donation, cake stall, bring and bake Please come along if only to say Hello!  Bring the children!  Everyone welcome! £3.50 adults, £2.00 for children Entrance fee includes free food and raffle Entrance can be found between Nos. 81 and 83 Manchester Drive [NB: Some pictures, taken at this event, have been posted here]   … [Read more…]

“Tree Bog” Course and Booking Form

With Jay Abrahams of ‘Biologic Designs Ltd’ Jay is the originator of the tree bog concept. At Lambourne End Centre for Outdoor Learning Dates: 16th – 18th Sept 2011 Course will cover theory, design and construction. Cost: £180 per person – this will cover food and accommodation. Food will include produce from our own farm and gardens. To request a booking form, please contact LAMBOURNE END CENTRE, MANOR ROAD, LAMBOURNE END, ESSEX, RM4 1NB www.lambourne-end.org.uk 020 8500 3047 … [Read more…]

Potato Day 2011

THE  FIRST SE ESSEX POTATO DAY! Leigh-on-Sea Allotment & Leisure Garden Association in association with SE Essex Organic Gardeners and kindly hosted by Trust Links Fifteen years ago, as part of the HDRA’s (now Garden Organic) commitment to biodiversity, the first Potato Day was held, the brainchild of Jackie Gear MBE. It has now grown to a major event attracting thousands of visitors to Ryton. Several local organic groups (and latterly allotments, other gardening groups and garden centres) have picked up on the idea. Ours was a joint effort, both financially and otherwise, organised and run entirely by volunteers from the Leigh-on-Sea Allotment & Leisure Garden Association, in conjunction with Julian Turner, organiser of the East Anglia Potato Day, and kindly hosted by Trust Links. Julian warned us straightaway that the first lesson we would learn would be the weight of the stock and that we needed to accept that setting up took time and oomph! We offered over thirty varieties (one third organic), which we sold by the tuber. Well, it rained persistently all day, and the gazebo was challenging at the beginning, but everyone was pleased with the result. On the day, we took £45.00 on Alan Romans’ booklets, £112.00 admission fees (112 people), £320.70 on potato tubers, making a total of £477.70. Anji Stratton, Trust Links’ Training and Employment Co-ordinator, very kindly supplied welcome refreshments during the event. As our ‘residual stock was significant but not intimidating’ we decided to try our luck at the Leigh Farmers’ Market, followed by a few more gallant efforts during the next few weekends at the Leigh clubhouse until Robert Wiseman carted the remaining tubers off to his local car boot sale for us! We say THANK YOU TO everyone who made this happen, especially Audrey, Barbara and Alan and, of course, to Phil Cooper for including our event in his website potatoday.org Carole (Click thumbnails to enlarge)   … [Read more…]