Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Pulling out tomato vines

After harvesting a wonderful amount of gorgeous tomatoes over the summer, we've now begun pulling out the spent vines and replacing them with winter crops. We had three successional sowings of tomatoes, and the first two are already out and in the compost (along with their jute twines) - the third batch still has a few tomatoes to ripen on them.
Friday lunchtime.

Friday dinnertime.

Saturday hometime.
On Sunday and Monday we finished tidying the tunnel, then laid greenwaste compost 3cm thick to create seven beds, which on Tuesday we planted with green sprouting calabrese, komatsuna (Chinese spinach), kohl rabi, coriander, chervil, and headed lettuces - photos to follow.

Storm Callum

Storm Callum hit the farm at the weekend, but with no lasting damage, though we all got wet harvesting veg for market and veg boxes, and it was a little hairy and noisy at times!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

St Just in Bloom 2018

Bosavern Community Farm is proud to have been awarded "Outstanding" by the Royal Horticultural Society and South West in Bloom, as part of the "It's Your Neighbourhood" section of St Just In Bloom - the third consecutive year we have achieved "outstanding".

For the second year running we also supplied a small team of volunteers to help plant the planters on the edge of town.

St Just achieved another excellent Gold Cup in the 2500-5499 population section. The Commercial Hotel won "Best Floral Pub" as well as a Gold Award in the "Business, Tourism and Leisure" section. Eight other projects in St Just also achieved "outstanding" in the It's Your Neighbourhood section, so a great achievement all round - well done to all.
Part of our expanding awards wall in the farm shop.

Veg box raffle prize

We are often asked to provide a veg box as a raffle prize for good local causes, and we are always happy to oblige - this one went to raise money to repair the St Just Anglican Church roof.
This was a standard veg box with a dozen eggs (5th October) and contained aubergines, salad potatoes, pickling onions, a swede, beetroot, kale, perpetual spinach, a courgette, a cucumber, rocket, and salad peppers.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Jane and Alice

Jane (a tattoo artist from Los Angeles) and Alice (from Brittany) came to the ends of their volunteering stays with us on Thursday and Friday just gone. We'd like to thank them for all their help.
Jane removing the first line of spent tomato vines (we planted Chinese leaves and pak choi for winter).

Alice planting overwintering onion sets, along with Sue.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Open day photos

The incredible Blazing Hearts' Chorus singing in the farmyard - many thanks to Vicky the msical director.

Eating lunch around the campfire while the choir performs.

Two local conservation organisations came along to raise awareness - thanks to Gerald the hedgehog for coming out for a snuffle.

A tour of the polytunnels and some of the market garden.

Matt Pitt of the Cornish Black Bee Company showing people the demonstration hives in the Bee Ed Shed.
Many many thanks to everybody who made today such a success - the organisers, tour leaders, bakers, brewers (of hot drinks!), stallholders, shop assistants, cooks, parking wardens, rafflers etc...

Perrine and Malina

We have a continual turn-over of wwoof volunteers, and this week it was the turns of Perrine (from France) and Malina (from Germany) to move on to pastures new. Thanks as always to our wwoofers who, alongside our local volunteers, put so much into the farm.
Malina, in one of the polytunnels picking rocket for veg boxes.

Perrine on the market garden, helping to cover some unused sections for winter.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Open Day this Sunday 12-3pm

Our first open day this year (we've been busy) will be Sunday 30th September from midday till 3pm, as part of the Community Supported Agriculture Network UK's open farms weekend. There will be our pop-up Cowshed Cafe, the farm shop selling a range of local and organic produce, egg collecting, a tour of the farm, visits to the demonstration bee-hives with Matt Pitt of the Cornish Black Bee Company, face painting, craft workshops, wildlife organisation stalls, a fire, and live music (we hope - please bring instruments / voices).

Please come along, and bring friends and family - to support your community farm, sign up for a veg box, find out how you can help as a volunteer - or just to have fun.

Ben and Phil

Ben (a climbing instructor from Leeds and our hay-bale loading legend) and Phil (a postman from Brighton) both spent time volunteering on the community farm recently, and we'd like to thank them for their endeavours whilst wwoofing with us.
Ben cleaning out our egg-packing room.

Phil picking chives in the Mothership polytunnel.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Bringing in the hay

Our four fields of hay were cut on Friday 31st August, baled on the following Wednesday, and gradually brought into the open barn on Wednesday afternoon, Thursday afternoon, Friday afternoon, and Saturday morning. Thankfully this year there was no heavy rain in the forecast (and none in real life either), so we could take our time and continue all the other farm activities (such as picking veg!) as well. Many thanks go to everyone who helped with the hay, it's a big job and we're very grateful to you all - Ben 1, Andy, Pete, Ben 2, Stella, Marin, Rob, Alice, Jenny, Solomon, Medellin, Malina and Dom - and to Simon for getting our tipping trailor functional as it made a big difference with faster turnarounds between yard and field.
 
Clive and Kieron baling in Carn Meadow on Wednesday afternoon.

About to collect the first trailor load in Carn Meadow as the baling continues.

Ben 2 and Pete loading the trailor in Standing Stone Field.

Pete, Ben 1, and Rob loading the trailor in Hotel Meadow.

Stacking hay in the barn - Andy, Malina, Pete and Ben 1.

Ben 1 and Pete with the final load from Hotel Meadow, on Saturday lunchtime.
Carrying from farmyard to barn - Andy, Jenny, Alice, and kids.

894 bales stacked in the open barn ready for use and sale.
This year we harvested 894 bales from our four fields, the same land surface that we harvested 1040 from last year - this reduced yield is due to the lack of rain for two months of the growing season. The hay is now available to buy in our farm shop at only £3 per bale - we still have 42 bales of last year's hay if you prefer your fodder to be more mature!

New raised beds

We had a grassy patch between our propagation polytunnel and the sheltered bed behind it (for salad and runner beans), so we decided to build some raised beds and utilise the space.
An unused wooden tonne box in the packing shed, which was sliced into three sections to make the raised beds.

The first section, having been jigsawed off the top of the tonne box.

The three boxes in position, laying in the cardboard, and starting to fill with our own compost.

Filling with our own compost, then a layer of green waste compost on the top.

The three raised beds ready for planting.
We built, installed, and filled the three new beds on Tuesday afternoon, and on Wednesday morning we planted two with salad seedlings, sowed the third with radish seeds, and finally covered them with wondermesh to protect and shelter them.

Stella and Marin

Stella (from Austria, on her second visit) and Marin (from Germany) both left the farm on Friday morning after wwoofing with us - many thanks to both of them for their hard work and help.
Stella stacking hay bales on the trailor on our first day of bringing in the hay.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Hay update

Our hay was baled on Wednesday afternoon, and so far we have brought 295 bales into the barn for storage. This afternoon we began on the second field of four. We will be bringing more in tomorrow, Friday, from 2 till 5pm, and then all day Saturday, from 9am till 5pm, if anybody would like to come and join the team of volunteers. Just turn up - we'd love to see you!!

Coco

Coco, from the south of France, left the community farm this morning to return home for studies, having volunteered with us for one month. Many thanks go to Coco, and to all our volunteers, for their help, and for making Bosavern Community Farm such a special place.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Kristin

Kristin picking runner beans in the market garden.
Kristin, from Stuttgart, came to volunteer for a second time, but is heading back to Germany tomorrow to continue her studies. Many thanks Kristin for your help and enthusiasm, and we look forward to your third visit!

Chilli peppers

This year we have grown five chilli varieties, four of which are shown above. The fifth variety, rocoto, is just starting to produce now, having been killed off by the snow in March - they are perennials so we have had to start again using seeds saved from last year.

Jalapeno - bottom right, our mildest chilli, scoring 2,500 to 5,000 on the Scoville scale, most commonly used on pizza toppings (a chipotle is a smoked jalapeno).

Cayanetta - top left, a mild chilli, almost identical in appearance to the Ring Of Fire but with a rounded rather than pointed end, scoring 20,000 Scoville Heat Units.

Ring Of Fire - top right, the good old faithful of our chillies, scores 70,000 to 85,000 Scoville Heat Units.

Habanero - bottom left, my new favourite, hotter and tastier than the Ring Of Fire, measuring 100,000 to 350,000 on the Scoville scale.

All are available in our shop (and at farmers' markets) at only 10p each.
(We also stock sweet chill sauce, chille relish, and chilli chocolate....)


Sunday, September 2, 2018

Hay 2018

Our hay was cut on Friday, then got damp on Saturday, but is now drying out. We'll be bringing it in from the four fields and stacking it in the open barn at some point this week (last year this took two days) depending on the weather and when the contractor can bale it. We would love some help with the hay, so if anybody is willing and able to lend a hand please contact us at info@bosaverncommunityfarm.org.uk or on 788454. Many thanks!

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Tomorrow's veg boxes

One of tomorrow's £6 veg boxes, with an additional half dozen eggs at £1.60.
Tomorrow's small £6 veg box will contain beetroot, Maris Peer potatoes, tomatoes, rainbow chard, runner beans, and courgettes. The £10 box will contain Maris Peer potatoes, tomatoes, rainbow chard, runner beans, courgettes, aubergines, pointed cabbage, chilllies, and golden nugget squash.

Please email us on vegbox.bcf@bcents.org.uk to order yours.

Alex, Martin and Jack

Another three of our WWOOF volunteers have left the farm in the past few days:-
Alex, in the orange top, prepping beetroot in the packing shed (with Ann, Margaret, Jack, Marin, and Kristin).

Martin, picking rainbow chard with Kristin.

Jack, relaxing by the farmhouse kitchen door with Kristin.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Veg box Friday 17th August

Last Friday's small veg box, for only £6, contained aubergines, courgettes, runner beans, new potatoes, rainbow chard, and tomatoes.
The standard box, for £10, had extra tomatoes, plus kale, a globe artichoke, and a cucumber too.

More recent WWOOF volunteers

Giorgia, from Italy via Spain, shovelling green waste compost for brassica planting.

Katie, from England, harvesting redcurrants in the fruit cage.

Karen, from South Africa (on the left) helping to plant brassicas.

Adele, from France, picking climbing French beans in one of the polytunnels.

Patrick, from South Africa, with some of his tomato harvest.

Bastien, from France, collecting eggs.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Grapes

Our first ever grapes are now available in the farm shop, priced at £5 per kilo. They are green seedless "Nimrod" produced by two vines generously donated to the farm by Joan Fisher three years ago.
Grapes on our vines in the Mothership.

Grapes for sale at St. Just farmers' and craft market on Saturday.

Rain!

After two months of drought the rain finally came on Friday evening, to our great relief. We'd sown beetroot, chard, carrots, salads and turnips, as well as planting out pumpkins, courgettes, leeks, and dwarf French beans in the hope that it would, having already delayed for longer than we'd like.... We've never known a dry spell like it in eight years of community farming.
Planting pumpkins out a month late.

Planting leeks at the right time but in the wrong conditions.

Stormclouds gathering over the farm on Saturday morning.
Rain hitting our propagation area on Saturday afternoon.