Notes on Food & Gardens Meeting, 19th August 2015

Present: Steve, Martha, Jon
Apologies: Paul

What to do for the winter at the community allotment?

Need to prep the polytunnel for growing over winter one Wednesday in the next few weeks. Need to put labels on everything we sow/plant.

Suggestions for crops for the polytunnel: lambs lettuce, rocket, lettuce, oriental leaves, cabbage (for going outside later), cuttings

Suggestions for crops outside: broad beans, spinach, garlic, autumn onions, cabbage, green manures.

Steve suggested getting some hazel which we could coppice.

ACTION: Jon will check if we have any green manures in the seed swap box and if not Steve will order some.

Potato Day 2016

Need to put up posters and tell people (word of mouth is important). Prices will be the same as last year (12p per tuber for pre-orders, 14p per tuber for purchases made on the day). Waiting now for confirmation of varieties available and other non-potato seeds available. Potato Day group will meet again in September (now being lead by Paul). There’s also the bag making workshop on 12th September to provide a supply of bags for potato day.

Fruit Route Event

Anne Marie will arive Wednesday 14th October. There will be apple pressing on Thursday 15th at LAGS along with some event in the town (possibly in the shop that the University arts group Radar have rented in the town). On Saturday 17th October LAGS will host the apple press again and there will be a baking competition. Need to confirm definite dates and times.

Produce Swap

Steve had suggested holding a produce swap in the library on morning of Saturday 17th October. The idea was to get people in the town interested in preserves and locally grown and harvested crops, as well as advertising the Fruit Route event happening the afternoon on the same day. However if we can get space in the Radar shop for three days (Thurs-Sat) it might not need to have the library space as we could do the produce swapping there. We’ll find out more about that when we find out more about the (currently slightly confusing) offering of the shop space – Steve is meeting about it next week.

Winter Feast

Nothing been planned yet. Steve suggested having it in Fearon Hall as we’ve been building a good relationship with that community centre and its users. Paul has suggested a guitarist called Howard who has offered to come and play for us. A Thursday towards the end of November is the usual date and that works well. Aim for a 6pm start and go on until 9 or 10pm.

ACTION: Steve to post on the Google Group to check this is OK with everyone and if there are no objections he’ll book the room.

Autumn workshops

Martha suggested a workshop on pruning and taking cuttings from fruit bushes in the Autumn at LAGS once the students are back (maybe on the weekend before the Fruit Routes event and with Andy leading it).

ACTION: Martha to see if Andy is available that weekend.

We also talked about having a list of tasks that we need to do that we can advertise in advance. Steve suggested having the polytunnel set up day next Wednesday and then decide on the next task there for the following week, so that each task has a week in which we publicise it.

Use of plots by vulnerable people

We could invite people use the community allotment space to run events for vulnerable people, although we probably don’t have the skills and resources to do this ourselves. Martha suggested inviting Alison McGrath (a Master Gardener who works to get groups of vulnerable people gardening) to the next food group meeting to talk about this.

Date of Next Meeting

Wednesday 16th September at LAGS at 7pm.

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