Growing here and there

Newsome’s roving food growers have got together for a mini exchange programme this week.

On Saturday 17th March, we had our first ‘Growing Newsome at Stirley Farm’ session. It was a chance for local growers to meet up and have a relaxing couple of hours doing some planting at the farm.

We also found time to have a peek at Stirley’s first calf, born on 14th March, and to see what has changed since the Autumn.

The orchard has been planted now of course, and there’s a new soft fruit area running the whole length of the veg beds.

The area next to the orchard will become a little meadow, thanks to some new funding that the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust have secured for creating Blooming Meadows at Stirley and other sites. Throughout the afternoon, more than one of us remarked “is it really only a year since we first planted potatoes here?”

After our tour, we got on with digging up some artichokes and land cress to make way for the next crops, sowing some beetroot, carrots and parsnip seeds, weeding the beds and planting a few seed potatoes. We were also able to plant a few of the seeds that had arrived on my doorstep that very morning, brought by someone I’ve never met,  who had been told that I could put vegetable seeds to good use.

As usual, we had an enjoyable and interesting time, and Kim gave us lots of good advice along on the way. For example, did you know that you can put some grass clippings in with your seed potatoes to help feed them, or that a nettle bed can act as a good decoy to keep the creepy crawlies off your cabbages? And all this knowledge was imparted whilst nursing half a pint of tea in a beer glass, but that’s another story…

Then on Tuesday 20th March, we got together again when the Stirley Farm volunteers spent some time with us at the Growing Newsome Community Allotment. There was lots to do here too, including preparing the potato beds and thinning out our wayward strawberry patch.


Spring has definitely sprung across Newsome, and we’re looking forward to sharing the growing season together. You’re very welcome to come along and join in – have a look at the Newsome food calendar to find out what’s on.

Stirley Farm, 17th March 2012 – more photos on Flickr

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