13 Mar Cultivate Gardeners’ Q&A
…. with ‘Preparing the Ground’ Tips and Advice
Sunday 13 March 2.30-5pm
Leytonstone Library, 6 Church Lane, Leytonstone E11 1HG
This event was for novice and experienced growers. There were information sessions with tips about getting your growing spaces ready for planting summer crops AND a question and answer session with a panel of local, experienced fruit and vegetable growers. Ever wanted to know how to see off slugs? Why runner beans aren’t running?
2.30pm Preparing the Ground
3.30pm Refreshments and Seed Swap
4pm Gardeners’ Q&A
Introducing Cultivate Gardeners’ Q&A panel for 13th March 2015:
Author and food writer. Her first book East End Paradise is a book of practical gardening essays and recipes inspired by her allotment in Leyton where she has gardened since 2001. Her second book The Modern Peasant describes the work of independent food producers in cities (again with recipes) and won the Fortnum and Mason food book of the year 2014. Both were published by Chatto & Windus. She was the Food Editor of the current affairs magazine The Week for fifteen years and currently writes a cooking and growing column for Gardens Illustrated. She is also a regular contributor to the Financial Times Magazine.
Regular gardening expert on BBC Radio Suffolk’s gardening phone-in on Saturday mornings. Her career as a horticulturalist began on leaving school with a 3-year apprenticeship with Notcutts nurseries, she was the first woman to complete the full field, propagation and container unit rotation. This led to a job in their flag ship garden centre where she managed the aquatic, bedding and hardy nursery stock areas. She subsequently worked for a Garden Centre and specialist nursery. Following an 8-week placement at Thompson & Morgan she was offered the Quality Control Manager post which involved overseeing the trial grounds, the seed testing laboratory and customer service. After 7 years with Thompson and Morgan she took a researcher post for what was then called Gardening Which? co-ordinating trials and writing reports for the magazine. She then went on to head up the customer enquiries team answering some 3000 letters and emails a year on all sorts of horticultural issues as well as delivering roadshows and garden exhibits including the Growing Schools project to encourage growing of plants in schools.
Retired from environmental health work, David now enjoys allotment gardening. He grows as many varieties of fruit and vegetables as he can reasonably cram in, using them to make good things to eat and drink. Cooking is a joy too and he loves making interesting drinks such as fruit infusions and wine and cider made from grapes and apples grown on the allotment.
David’s the site representative for the Pimp Hall allotment site in Chingford and is a partner in the Pimp Hall Bees Project. They currently keep 4 producing hives on the allotment site and will be adding 2 more on the Nature Reserve this year. The Council has now agreed in principle to the keeping of hens on the site and an agreement is currently being drawn up.
Arrangements are now being made for the training workshops which are now held on the site to be opened to other community groups, and gardeners from other local allotment sites.
Ru has been an organic gardener in a community setting for the last 20 years. He is the Plants & Production Worker at OrganicLea’s Hawkwood Plant Nursery in Chingford, and teaches the Level 2 Gardening courses for Waltham Forest Adult Learning Service. His specialist area is organic production of fruit and vegetables.