A workers' cooperative growing food on London's edge in the Lea Valley

Open Day: John Clare & winter plants

This month’s open day is a special one as it’s our annual celebration of locally-connected poet John Clare. We’ll also be taking a look ahead to the coming colder months, with an opportunity to skill up and buy seedlings to plant for winter.

From mustards and rocket to endive, kale, and chard, there are many choices when it comes to keeping your garden and your plate green over the coming cold months! As well as keeping up your vitamin and mineral intake for fighting winter illnesses, their fresh green leaves are a reminder and a harbinger of the next growing season – and they give you an early spring harvest too if you let some plants grow through. As usual there’s also delicious lunch, coffee and cake served all day, Kids Kitchen and a family craft session.

Sunday 25 August, Open Day at Hawkwood Nursery

10-12.30 Seasonal Blitz morning: our weekend volunteering opportunity, join us at 9.45 for a 10am start. Lunch is provided for those doing the full morning shift. This month the focus is on planting winter vegetable plants.

11-1 Kids Kitchen: children cook up their own seasonal feast… and eat it together! Places are limited for this and there is a small fee to cover costs – book online here, or find out more first here.

12-3 Coffee, cake and delicious locally grown lunch. Plus our farm stall, and a plant sale – buy seedlings now to grow your own salads and leafy greens through winter.

1.30-3.30pm BeeWild Family drop-in crafting: craft activity focused on the pollinator plants loved by bees and butterflies.

2-2.30pm Pollinator survey: As part of our Bee Wild work to promote and monitor biodiversity we’ll be doing a brief survey of flora and insects on our site – all welcome.

3pm Site tour with a John Clare focus. A tour of the 12 acre site around the orchard, bee hives, salad terrace, greenhouse and vineyard with a John Clare twist! John Clare was a 19th century poet who has the acclaim of “the greatest labouring-class poet that England has ever produced. No one has ever written more powerfully of nature, of a rural childhood, and of the alienated and unstable self” (Jonathan Bate).

Directions to Hawkwood Nursery including bus, rail and river-cycle routes and the way through the woods are here. Parking is available at the site but space is limited so please come by other means if possible.

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