Well the saying "it never rains but it pours" couldn’t have been more true on Saturday morning. Having enjoyed a wonderfully warm summer the children's gardens were looking rather parched. The plants appeared thirsty, the water butts urgently needed refilling as did our pond. Needless to say on Saturday 6th October it rained and rained and rained some more, much to the delight of the children’s plants and flowers - not so much to the soggy attendees.
We made the most of the shelter the polytunnel provided by ensuring the tomatoes were picked and indoor irrigation system was working correctly (fed from the water butts outside). We even consumed our tea and cake, kindly provided by the ladies from Gilbert’s tea room, inside the poly tunnel listening to the downpour outside. During a short break in the weather, we busily collected fallen leaves from around the garden and car park. In a week or two, once the leaves have fully dried out the children will be sticking them to cardboard cutout hedgehogs providing a colourful coat of pointy brown, yellow and red ‘spikes’. Other plans we have for the coming weeks are to prepare for the children’s annual halloween party and then to ready everyone’s plots for the winter. This usually consists of removing all remaining plants and flowers and adding them to the compost heap, covering the exposed soil with cardboard to discourage weed growth and ensuring that all garden tools are clean and tidily put away in the shed ready for next year.
This year the Sherfield English Children’s Community Garden has joined the Royal Horticultural Society 'Campaign For School Gardening'. This initiative provides a chance for young people to discover the benefits of gardening, not only for them but also in their local community and the wider world. Registration has provided the children with free packets of seeds, a gardening project book and numerous factsheets to educate them in four themes of gardening around The Changing Climate, Wildlife, Growing Food For Their Plate and Creating a Happy Place. We really hope that this campaign will be running again next year as it’s helped the less knowledgable to get a better understanding around gardening techniques.
Thank you as always to all volunteers who give up their time and resources to this great local community group.