Community Garden August Update

 The summer of 2021 will not be fondly remembered as a time of long lazy days and warm balmy evenings. Instead, we have had seemingly ceaseless rain and cloud, and very little of the sunshine we all look forward to. The community garden has weathered it fairly well, with the exception of the tomatoes and new potatoes, which have both succumbed to the inevitable BLIGHT – we knew it was coming – blight is a fungal infection, the spores of which are carried in rainwater. Rainy summers are always accompanied by blighted potatoes and tomatoes (it was this which caused the Irish Potato Famine), and no amount of care or goodwill could exempt our beloved garden.  We got to the potatoes and harvested them before the fungus could spread from the leaves to the healthy tubers below, but the tomatoes have been a bigger challenge –  we have been trying to increase airflow and removing infected leaves and fruits.  Some climate models predict that the UK will be 6% wetter as a result of climate change – very bad news for tomato lovers…

More positively, the dahlias and other flowers have been (and continue to be) glowing with rich and glorious colours, and the posies have been selling as quickly as we can pick them – thank you! Other successes have been edible – small and crisp courgettes, cucumbers, beetroots, carrots (what a difference in taste!), French beans of various colours, and salad leaves. People have been stopping me to tell me how great the flavour is of these home grown veg – they are just so fresh! Next time you reach for a plastic wrapped cucumber from Spain or green beans from Kenya, please consider that you could have them fresher, tastier, healthier, and with a POSITIVE environmental impact from your wonderful local village shop.

We’re always open to suggestions of things to grow – please do get in touch if you have thoughts you’d like to share. There is a facebook page (Sarratt Community Garden) with photos, news and dates of events, if you are interested, or you can ask to join Alan’s mailing list (alanmilsom456@btinternet.com) .

Two new initiatives have been agreed since the last update.

  1. We now have two Duke of Edinburgh students coming to do their volunteering with us – we’re happy to take more if you hear of others looking for a place to volunteer.

  2. We have agreed a partnership with local charity ‘Mission EmployAble’, who help young disabled adults to learn skills that will help them with future employment. We will be offering some horticultural training and experience, as well as helping them to start and maintain their own garden in Chorleywood – brilliant!

Finally, a date for your diary: Sunday 19th September.

A fun and fundraising event pressing apples in Sarratt. Details to follow, but do save the date!

As ever, if you have any questions or comments, or would like a look at the garden, please email on floragarveytutoring@icloud.com