Welcome to Winter 2020 at the garden
Hello from the KentCOG team, we hope you are keeping well despite the lockdown challenges. Our small volunteer working party worked wonders maintaining the site during the autumn months. The garden has been strimmed, weeded, and the beds are now planted with green manure to see us through until the New Year. We also planted bulbs and sweet peas with the help of volunteer students, and were on the cusp of opening our doors to the wider community when the second lockdown restrictions hit and we had to make the decision to close again. We are now working remotely and growing from home once more. I’m pleased to say the sweet peas are coming along nicely and the bulbs are on course to brighten up our stall come spring.
What’s happening this season?
Now is the time to make the most of the daylight hours and get outside before the nights draw in. Soaking up some all-important sunrays will help boost your mood, aid sleep, and add to a general sense of wellbeing. If you can do some DIY in your own backyard it will help you get ahead for next years growing seasons, so dust out those cobwebs in the shed, fix the broken canes and frames, and design a planting plan that will brighten up a grey day. At KentCOG we gave our potting shed a much-needed makeover with support from East Kent Mind and B&Q, who donated floor paint, plants, and furniture to cheer the place up. Take a look at our before and after shots on Instagram (kent_community_oasis_garden) and come visit us in person for a hot cuppa when we reopen next year.
East Kent Mind’s December timetable continues to provide a rich array of online workshops. Their website is well worth a visit for all sorts of ways to stay well and connected over the Christmas period, from poetry workshops to full body workouts. They are also offering one-hour peer support groups called Winter Warmers, so no one ever needs to feel alone.
East Kent Mind support line 0808 196 3898 www.eastkentmind.org.uk
It’s time to get creative in the kitchen and preserve your remaining fruit and vegetables. We have been busy making chutneys and flavoured gins for Christmas gifts, and we couldn’t resist making the ultimate rustic wreath made with foraged materials from our woodland walks. Check out our blog for top tips and recipes https://blogs.kent.ac.uk/kentcog/ and email us if you would like to register your interest for future Grow Your Wellbeing workshops via zoom.
Last but not least
We would like to say a special thank you to our head gardener Brian, for all his hard work over a very difficult year. Thank you also to our working party volunteers Justin and Graham for their on-going support. We hope you all finally get to put your feet up over the festive period and enjoy a well-earned rest!
When we re-open, please come and help us grow again! Email us at KentCOG to join one of our regular sessions or to find out more:
Every Tuesday 10 – 2pm (Community Session)
Every Wednesday 11.30 – 1.30pm (Student Session)
Find us here
Lets hope our next newsletter will be full of cheer for the New Year, with news of restrictions lifting along with our spirits. Until then, lets raise a glass to one and all. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Emily Hill, KentCOG Coordinator