Thursday, 18 March 2010

Thursday 18th March 10

Up early enough to be ready to get to St Nicks soon after 10am, where there was a meeting of the Federation of City Farms.

My talk on 'Extreme Composting' was on the agenda for 10.45. I had 8 of the 11 attendees, the other talk/workshop was about organising events.

I started with the basics of composting as there were a few people from a new project in Scunthorpe who claimed to know nothing, and I soon moved onto how to compost cooked food, the 'unofficial' way (just bung it on your heap!) and moved onto Bokashi, the official way home composters can recycle cooked, processed and fleshy food. A quick mention of Rockets and Big Hannah technology, and then onto humanure. Then I told them about what used to happen in New York state, where there are thousands of deer killed on the roads every year, and these created pollution problems etc just left on the side of the road. So the solution now is to compost them in windrows of sawdust and woodchip. This led on to how to dispose of human carcasses, and a discussion of Promession, the yet-to-be implemented compost burial method. Finally, a quick tour of the compost bins and wormeries.

The talk went down well, and I enjoyed it too. Next we all went for a walk down to the Tang Hall allotments where there is a newish project called Garden Able. This is an accessible allotment, with pavers and raised beds made of tyres. Unfortunately there is a huge amount of resistance from the council, and they have declared the tyres unacceptable (no reason given, as they don't leach toxins and are extremely stable) so these will be replaced with raised beds made of wood.

Then back to the centre for lunch. I chatted with the proprietor of a restaurant from Scunthorpe who has land and is hosting a Community Supported Agriculture project. We chatted about composting all types of food waste. I told her about the Ridan, hope she contacts me as I'm sure I can help.

Lunch was awesome... delicious soup (tasted like a mix of squash and carrot, with lentil) plus baguettes, cheese, salads. Yummy!

In the afternoon there was a talk about a project called OPAL, which is all about wildlife, animals and plants, and I need to research more about it as it seemed really interesting. We then did some pond dipping with Sarah from OPAL, and found a few nice beasties... this took me back to my childhood as I haven't done pond dipping for so long!

I left after 3pm to get back home before our eldest, got in just 5 minutes earlier than him.

I did a load of housework before I got changed out of my tidy clothes and the went into the garden til 6.45 when I came in for tea... cauliflower, potatoes and a Gilly nutloaf.

Quite a peaceful evening, watched my favourite politician on Question Time.

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