Author Archives: GHCG

Spring News from a Greening Garden!

April 8, 2019

Hi everyone!

This month is one of our busiest times in the garden. The volunteers have planted a heroic amount of seeds and they are all growing happily away in the tunnels and popping up in the soil outside.  We’re planning our usual big plant sale in May so for the next month the polytunnels will be PACKED with little plants being looked after with love before we send them off into the world.  Also in the past couple of months there has been epic clearance work done by the wonderful Wednesday volunteers.  About five years ago we were defeated by brambles and we surrended a large corner of the edible forest to them but this year it has been reclaimed, cleared and we’ve planted a little willow wood ready for winter wreaths in the future.  The clearing work also uncovered our little stream which we kind of knew was there but have mostly forgotten about but now the garden feels transformed in a subtle but exciting way…

It’s my favourite time of year as every starts turning green and we’ve got an abundance of green leaves to munch and get that green inside of us.  We’ve got spinach, chard, kale, mustards, and more coming out of our ears – it’s great! Also it was great to see the first little purple nose of asparagus poke it’s way into the world. We first planted asparagus in 2013 but were over confident and didn’t prepare the bed properly and then ignored it for the first year. It grew but never big enough for a proper harvest and despite giving it piles of manure and apologies in years to come it never bounced back and so last year we started again. This time  we prepped the bed carefully, mulched it, watered it, kept a close eye on it’s progress and it looks like it’s paid off AND we now only have to wait until NEXT spring before we can try it. It’ll be worth the wait.

It’s the Easter holidays so we’ll be busy with our holiday club on Tuesday and an adventure for a families with a child with SEN this Thursday 11th.  There’s still some spaces left on Thursday and next week and you can book HERE  and there’s more info on the website.  Then next term we’ll have our toddlers and afterschoolers back for more garden fun, singing, hooning round, planting, making and all that.  We’ve got some spots in our 11:30 Tuesday toddler group so get in touch if you’d like to come along for a free taster.

    

And coming up next month….. OUR BIG SPRING FAIR!  Saturday 11th May 1pm-4pm.  They’ll be loads of plants for sale, choirs singing, musician playing, pond dipping, pizza eating, face painting, junk drumming, making and crafting and caking and MORE.  AND still at 2012 prices!  It’s YOU the lovely supporters of the garden that make these events so lovely and help us raise money for the garden. So if you can help on the day or bake a cake or spread the word on facebook or just come along and bring everyone you know!  ALSO we need T-shirts!  Any size or quality for a craft we doing on the day – so if you have any spare please come and drop them off in the garden any Wednesday 10-4

And finally a massive thank you to all the good folks who pop blue tokens in the boxes at north Bristol Tescos. In Jan/Feb we had the most blue tokens we get a whopping £4000 so it means our activities for families with special educational needs or a disability will be fully funded for the year and we can get lots of lovely resources!  THANK YOU!!

See you in the garden!

Lucy Mitchell
Community Project Worker

07506 905 394
 
JOIN OUR MAILING LIST!  CLICK HERE
 
Please note I work part time usually on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and some Thursdays. 
 
We’ve got a Facebook page with lots of updates and pictures AND we’re on Twitter @ghcgarden

News from a wintery garden

March 7, 2019

Hi everyone!

It’s definitely past the time for happy new year but happy February 2019!  We’re having a great year so far. We were straight back in the garden on the 2nd Jan weeding and clearing and building and cooking and carving and painting and souping and sowing (only sweetpeas so far).  We’re still harvesting leeks, parsnips, celeriac, coriander, jerusalem artichokes, beetroots, chard and kale and the polytunnels are full of winter salads and the balehouse stacked with stored squashes,  Tasty times! The crocuses and pink noses of rhubarb pushing up through the soil all sing “Spring is coming!”.

Last month we finally made a proper start in making our new sign for the entrance and only 3 years or since the last one blew down and fell apart. This time we’re carving our name into a piece of western red hemlock, under the watchful eye of George our woodwork guru.

We also started back with our toddler groups and after school clubs.  The new Thursday group are great and totally mostly unfazed by the cold and dark!  It’s about this time we remember that the light is creeping back and the days of hooning round in a night garden playing games in the dark are numbered and precious.  Here’s pics of the tods giving the little house a fresh lick of (mud) paint and Tuesday fun with boxes

   

And more news!  One of FAB toddler group parents wrote a lovely article for Bristol Food Connections read it HERE.

Also if are someone or you are someone who knows someone who does their shopping at Tescos please make it known to them that the north Bristol shops are all raising money for us to be able to run our adventure days for children with SEND and their families this year.  So please put your little blue tokens in our slot!

AND this week was our 7th birthday in a few weeks so yesterday we fired up the frog for a pizzas. 7 years old! The internet says “Most 7yearolds display an unending thirst for knowledge and will have an innate curiosity and excitement about things in the world. … At this age, they also take great pride in sharing their knowledge about things” Sounds about right 🙂

Let me leave you with the knowledge that the date of our spring fair is Saturday 11th May. So pop that in your diaries/calendars/phones!

See you in the garden

Lucy
07509 905 309
ghcgarden@gmail.com

Wreath Making! Saturday 1st December

November 15, 2018

We’re running our CHRISTMAS WREATH MAKING WORKSHOP

SATURDAY 1ST DECEMBER 10am-4pm,

….and it’s still just £10!!

There’s no need to book and you are welcome to drop in throughout the day.  Making a wreath takes about an hour so please arrive by 3pm. It’s a really fun, friendly and informal session, we’ll provide willow, foliage, advice and encouragement. If you want to bring your own secateurs, gloves and pretty things winter foliage then that’s fine. You’ll weave a willow ring, decorate it and we guarantee you’ll walk away with something ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL.  Children are welcome and it’s a great start to the festive season!

 

Remember, remember the 10TH of November

November 8, 2018

Hi everyone!

Come one come all to our bonfire! THIS SATURDAY 10th November 6-7:30! The guy is built and Pete has amassed a huge pile of wood and is totally undaunted by the fact a lot of it is very soggy! There will be samosas and sausage rolls, delicious cake, posh hot chocolate with whipped cream and marsh mallows, AND hot spicy apple juice and cider to warm you even the coldest of cockles!

Our pals over at Bishop Rd will be setting off their AMAZING display at 6:45 but if the weather is fine we’ve been very busy in the past so get here early to avoid disappointment!

BUT WHAT IF THE WEATHER IS BAAAAAAAAD??? Well! The delicious samosas and whatnot are already ordered so there will folks will be here WHATEVER even it is just sheltering from the storms whilst guzzling delicious treats and setting your minds towards the colder darker days ahead of us and you’re very very welcome to grab your waterproofs and come along! Pete will get a fire going (size depending wind speed and direction!) and please come and gather, and be reminded that the warmth of community, friends and hot beverages is what has always gotten us through the winter!

No sparklers! Thanks!

See you in the garden!*

Lucy

*Due to a diary mishap I’m sadly away and won’t see you in the garden this time! But have a great one! AND if someone is good at taking pictures in the dark PLEASE PLEASE take some corkers and send them on to me!

Lucy Mitchell
Community Project Worker
07506 905 394

ghcgarden@gmail.com

Harvest Fair! Summer!… and a mircale!

September 10, 2018

Hi everyone

The school term has started, the leaves are beginning to turn and fall, and the skies are full of autumn drama…. it must mean… THE HARVEST FAIR IS ON IT’S WAY!

SATURDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER 1PM-4PM!! Just £1 – kids free!

If you haven’t been to one of our events before you can expect live music, delicious cake, pizza fresh from the frog, apple bobbing, vegetable monster creation, pond dipping, giant games, a garden wide treasure hunt, a chance to make a clay pot with fab local artict Bex Hill, story telling, drumming and Pete’s going to get the apple press out and we’re going to be pressing apples – so come along and let’s get juicy!

There will also be an indoor quiet space with sensory activities and a sensory trail.  Our garden is wheelchair accessible including the compost toilet.

AND YOU CAN HELP!! YOU are what makes these events so special and these special events help keep the garden going!  Please bake us a cake, or volunteer on the day, or help spread the word on your strret or share our event on Facebook – or just come along on the day and bring everyone you know!

We’ve had a brilliant summer of kids’ activities in the garden. Our adventure days were a blur of dinosaur madness and we’ll be back in October half term for our ever popular Harry Potter themed days on Tuesday 20th and Friday 2nd November.  Booking will open in the next couple of weeks.

Also our family adventure days for families with a child with SEN were just lovely!  Epic salads were harvested and munched with freshly baked pizza! Creation were hammered together! Slime was sat in! We sang, chatted, lounged in hammocks, and laughed and as one parent said, their day was “one of the best days of the summer!” – we LOVE running these days and we’ll be back in half term Thursday 2nd Nov!

We’ve still got LOTS of spaces in our 11:30 Golden Buds Toddler group described as”definitely the best thing you can do with a pre-schooler” and “every week without exception has been amazing”!  Get in touch!

And let me leave you with the story of the miracle sunflowers!  Self seeded from last year we’ve watched in amazement as these plucky little lovelies germinated and sprouted in the unyielding stone of the hardstanding path just by our shelter. They’ve been kicked, knocked about, trod on and bashed by chairs by accident. A well meaning splint on their early days wasn’t removed and one of them needed surgery to remove the string cutting into it’s bleeding stem and then it started being eaten by wasps but regardless the miracle sunflowers have grown on and now loom over us cheerfully each week as we drink tea and marvel at them happily

See you in the garden!

Lucy Mitchell

ghcgarden@gmail.com

07506 905 394

Summer Update

July 20, 2018

Hi everyone

Wowow what a summer! I’ve never know such a long HOT dry spell in my time as a grower. We’ve got wrinkled blueberries and wilted bolting lettuce, and some seeds that daren’t even poke through the hot dry soil.  It is only thanks to the tireless effort of Pete and the volunteers that much of the garden isn’t a wasteland!  We generally don’t do that much watering out of the polytunnels but it’s been all hands to the pump this year. We had managed so far from our well which usually supplies the whole site but now from today we’re on the mains. Eeeeek! Still it should be a good year for aubergines and melons!

      

The summer holidays are here and as usual we’re running loads of great activities for kids in the garden!  We’ve got adventure days running every Tuesday and there’s currently spaces left on 24th July, 21st August and 28th August so get in quick and spread the word if you know any 5-12 yr old adventurers who’d like a journey through time and garden!  It’s 10am-4pm £26 (£21 siblings) and you can book directly here

We’re also happy to be running more of our family adventure days aimed at families with a child/ren with SEN and their siblings!  These days are a lovely mix of silliness, sensory play, pond dipping and nature exploration and we’ll enjoy a freshly picked salad from the garden and pizza that we’ll prepare together cooked in the clay frog.  Just £5 per child as we’re funded by the Quartet foundation.  11am-3pm Thursday July 26th and Thursdays 16th and 30th August.  To book on click here   

And we’ll have the last two Sunday Clubs for families with children with SEN on Sunday August 5th and Sunday 2nd September. 2pm-4pm!  Come along for more of the above, no need to book.  

And finally we have cast the runes and peered longs and hard into the auspicious hummus pot of wisdom and decreed that the Saturday 29th September is the best date for ourharvest fair this year.  So save the date/cancel other plans and if you know any fab musicians or choirs or jugglers or sword swallowers or story tellers or anyone who can help make the day special that start working on them now

See you in the garden!

Lucy Mitchell
Community Project Worker

07506 905 394
ghcgarden@gmail.com
 
JOIN OUR MAILING LIST!  CLICK HERE

The SPRING FAIR!

May 4, 2018

Hi everyone!

The Spring Fair!! It’s coming!!!
Saturday 12th May 1pm-4pm!

 

If you’ve already been to one of our fairs then you’ll know these are lovely family friendly events, sunshine or rain with lots of old school fun and lots of free kids’ activities.

If you haven’t been before here’s 15 reasons why you should come.
1. Scoff delicious pizza made by Simon the Pizza king straight out the clay oven
2. Buy lovely healthy organic flower and veg seedlings from out plant Ssall
3. Hunt for the gnomes hidden round the garden
4. Pond dipping!  Find a newt… then put it back 🙂
5. Sing along with live music from the fabulous ‘What the Folk’ who put in an heroic performance during the rains of the harvest fair (on at 2:45)
6. Make a beautiful may crown
7. Play giant games
8. Chill out in our quiet area with sensory play
9. Eat lovely homemade cakes
10. Get involved and make some noise with the junk orchestra (running 1pm-4pm)
11. Enjoy our clockwork train 
12. Get your face painted
13. Make merry with the Pigsty Morris Dancers (on at 2:15)
14. Win a mini allotment starter kit in our raffle
15 Come and support a lovely local community garden.
 

Great so that’s decided. you’re all coming. Now tell all your friends, neighbours and family! If you’re on facebook find us, like us and share the post!

And what’s that? What else can you do you ask?? LOTS!  We need cakes please! We also happily accept misshapen biscuits, simple flapjacks and anything sweet you might like to cook – and eat! and we need more volunteers on the day! Have you got a couple of hours spare you could spare to help us set up from 11am or tidy up, or help on a stall?  Let me know!  And be rewarded with the warm glow of knowing you’ve made a good thing a little bit better.
And see you in the garden on the 12th!
All the best
Lucy
Lucy Mitchell
Community Project Worker
ghcgarden@gmail.com
07506 905 394

Farewell Winter! Hellooooo Spring!

March 23, 2018

Hi everyone

Spring!  We made it!  We had an absolutely lovely first day in the spring garden on Wednesday, sun shining, birds singing and seed planting and soup scoffing (thanks Danielle!)
      

​This winter we’ve really needed our weekly soups to keep us warm and this week in time for spring and the end of soup season we’ve just run out of onions.  The stored squash and carrots are nearly gone, we’re done to our last little swedes and kale… hooray for leeks! It’s hard to imagine it was like when people had to feed themselves through this hungry gap before the new veg were ready without a polytunnels or imported veg.  The vitamin rich green watercress or the first rhubarb poking through the soil must have been like emerald and ruby treasures.

  


We’ve got our usual jamp packed kids’ days running this Easter and 5-12 years olds can expect a trip to Never Never Land this time!   ​I am happy to announce we’ve got lottery funding this year to carry on providing our accessible family adventure days to familes with children with a special educational need or a disability.  Our first one in 2018 is on Thursday April 5th 11am-3pm and is just £5 per child and will be a LOVELY day of silliness and games and chance for families to spend time together outside and share a delicious freshly prepared lunch. Please pass on the info to anyone you think might benefit.

And more good news is Pete has found the fab Jeff Hart a straw bale builder and together they have started fixing the hole in our burnt but still beautiful Balehouse. Well done to the tough tods and parents of the Golden Buds, the ‘we-don’t-need-our-coats-on-we’re-not-even-cold’ kids of the afterschool club and the volunteers who’ve survived the winter in the garden with a very very drafty Balehouse.
A dates for your diary The Spring Fair!  12th May!  All offers of help, cake, nusic playing gratefully accepted as normal!  Also we are having our AGM in the Balehouse 7pm Wednesday 11th April, anyone is welcome along if you’d like to hear about the finanicial nitty gritty and and overview of goings on in the garden.
See you in the garden
Lucy
Lucy Mitchell

Community Project Worker

07506 905 394
ghcgarden@gmail.com
 
Please note I work part time usually on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and some Thursdays. 
 
We’ve got a Facebook page if you’re into that AND we’re on Twitter @ghcgarden
 
 

Winter sunshine and Balehouse fire

January 12, 2018

Hi everyone,
If your new year resolutions included trying to get out more, trying something new, learning more,  meeting new people, getting more exercise or eating more vegetables then you can do ALL THESE THINGS at once in the garden and still get to drink tea and eat biscuits. Come join us any Wednesday – January 10am-3pm, Febuary 10am-2pm.  And they’ll be soup, lush veg and maybe even sunshine like this week!
 
Also from next week the fabulous Katrin Vogel from ‘Tweed and Bird’ will be volunteering with us from 1:30-2:15 to help folks mend clothes FOR THREE WEEKS ONLY.  So if you’ve got a beloved jumper that need some attention, or some jeans with holes in the wrong places come down and get some help to do some your sewing in supportive space.
AND STOP PRESS due to a cancellation we currently have one space in our brilliant after school Golden Club so if you know any primary age children that like dens, games, silliness, and running round in the dark and are flooking for all that and more to do on a Tuesday 3:30-5:45 then get in touch!
And in other news we’ve had an ‘interesting’ start to the new fire year with…. a fire! inside the walls of the Balehouse!  It shouldn’t have been able to happen, it never occurred to us that it could happen but it did happen and now our beautiful cosy Balehouse currently has a hole instead of a wall, well it did for a bit, this picture was taken before it got patched up and tidied – Thanks Pete!
Hey ho, it could have been worse and we’ll carry on normal services and get it fixed sharpish, but it was definitely a shock…. but how can we stay upset when we’ve got glorious swedes like these and a whole load of pretty-as-picture polytunnel peas coming on?!
    
See you in the garden!
Lucy
 
Lucy Mitchell
Community Project Worker
ghcgarden@gmail.com
07506 905 394

Garden news! Wreath making! Soup

November 27, 2017

Hi everyone!

 
A belated thanks to everyone who came to the garden for our bonfire last month!  We were packed again and sorry to folks who couldn’t get in to see us burn this chirpy looking fellow in a massive fire and eat this lovely soup
      


A massive thanks to all the volunteers who make these events possible and wonderful, hats off to the Bish Rd PTFA for the fireworks and a round of applause for all you fab folks for turning up and helping us raise over £1000.
 
We’re running our ever popular wreath making workshop again! Saturday 9th December 10am-4pm. You are welcome to drop in throughout the day and making a wreath takes about an hour so please arrive by 3pm. And it’s still just a £10 per wreath. 
   


It’s a fun, friendly and informal session and we’ll provide beautiful foliage, advice and encouragement. You’ll weave a willow ring, decorate it and make something lovely. We have indoor space in case it’s awful weather but wrap up warm. We also provide secateurs and gloves but bring your own if got some nice ones. Children welcome and hot drinks and mince pies available. Please tell all your friends

 
From December the garden closes early and is only open from 10am-3pm on a Wednesday and soup season is definitely upon us so there’s delicious hot food to share at 1pm.  And I’ll leave you with a pic of Emma showing a pumpkin who’s boss and Susie hiding behind the years first celeraic.
     

See you in the garden!
Lucy