TRUST LAUNCHES A COMPETITION|
… to showcase Best Garden or Allotment sites.
All sites will initially be judged on:
- the general maintenance and cleanliness
of the area
- evidence of individual and/or communal composting
of waste disposal for non-compostable items
In the second round, the quality
of the produce will be taken into consideration. Well maintained communal buildings
will also gain points, as will evidence that wildlife is catered for with the
provision of such things as small areas of nettles for butterflies, and log piles
for small mammals, frogs and toads. Sites which show a strong community spirit
and co-operation between plot-holders will go down favourably with the judges.
additional category for this year is Best Community Project. Judges will be looking
at sites which serve the interests of the community. For example, some sites
grow shared produce by groups of gardeners in order to grow crops in a co-operative
way. Other examples may be providing a place for local school pupils, or those
with special needs to learn about the joys of gardening or for growing crops for
the housebound elderly. Maybe your site has set aside an area for wildlife, and
encourages the local population to come along and enjoy the delights of your wildlife
pond or sanctuary. It is essential that any project is run in conjunction with
the allotmenteers themselves, and not by a third party, the local authority etc.
shortlisted entries receive a visit from the judges and a certificate.
The Garden Party
"She's got to learn," said
his daughter, wrestling unsuccessfully with the three-year-old bundle of fury.
"It's Charlie's day, not hers." The child slithered out of her mother's
arms and onto the scorching patio.
"Come to Grandad, little one,"
said Bill, but the expression on her face said that she hated the entire world
and everyone in it.
He pretended not to notice while she scaled the side of
his wheelchair. The August sun forced him to squint but he could just discern
the swaying yellow blob of the bouncy castle at the end of the garden. Nearby
the men stood in a circle, cans in hand and legs apart. A tortoiseshell butterfly
settled on the potted marigold.
Then with a thump she landed on his lap.
She giggled, showing small white teeth, until she remembered she was supposed
to be sad.
The child kneeled up on Bill's lap - a tricky manoeuvre on the
bony blanketed legs - and cupped his face with determined little hands. "It's
not fair. Why do I have to wait for my birthday and Charlie doesn't?" Bill
picked off the tomato pips and curls of hair soldered to her cheeks.
when it's someone else's birthday, ain't it?" he said. She put her hand into
his jacket pocket and produced an apple. "I want it," she said.
Bill cut into the glossy peel with his penknife, and slowly rotated both apple
and blade against each other in perfect synchronicity. She stared at the demonstration,
giving little exclamations of wonder as the peel coiled downwards.
hold it for you, Grandad," she said solemnly, and put out both hands to catch
the juicy, spiralling snake. She wrapped it from wrist to elbow, and then held
up her forearm to admire it.
"I’m going to show Charlie my bracelet,”
HOMEOWNERS TURN TO GROW-YOUR-OWN
homeowners are focusing on health by planting their own vegetable gardens this
year, rejecting the rising cost of food and fuel, and pesticide-laden produce
most often found in supermarkets.
Just about every environmental group in
the United States, Canada and Europe warns that store-bought produce is loaded
with petro-chemical pesticides that build up in the human body. These chemicals
are being blamed for many illnesses. Consider the following:
lettuce and cucumbers have the highest concentration of pesticides, according
to the United States Department of Agriculturists’ annual crop report.
A major study by the New York State Department of Health directly links pesticides
to diabetes, now one of the most prevalent chronic diseases in the United States.
* The environmental group Global Pesticide Campaign warns that glyphosate
used in Roundup causes auto-immune deficiencies in children and the elderly.
Purdue University warns "weed and feed" type lawn chemicals have caused
bladder cancer in dogs. An Ohio K-9 corps reports several of their dogs developed
cancer after coming into contact with chemical fertilizers around their dog pens.
Consequently, the federal government is urging vets to report all cancer in animals
as an early warning sign for man.
Growing your own pesticide-free food
is easy and there's nothing healthier and as good tasting as produce picked at
maturity right in your back yard. Using organic methods, follow these few simple