Thursday, April 15, 2021

Veg boxes 16th April

We are now definitely in the Hungry Gap, so our boxes this week contain the usual assortment of chard, spring greens (including tender stems and tips), "oriental greens" (polytunnel brassicas), cauliflowers, purple sprouting broccoli, mixed herbs (coriander, parsley, oregano and fennel), potatoes, dried chillies, and salad leaves. Next week there will be parsnips, and we are all looking forward to a variety of new season produce by the end of next month.

Planting cucumbers

On Saturday we ripped out several lines of bolted brassica winter salad crops from Nigel polytunnel, and planted 150 Passandra cucumber vines. Planting cucumbers is a sign that spring is definitely here, and harvesting the first ones (usually towards the end of May) is a major sign that the Hungry Gap is drawing to a close.

The planting is quick, the stringing up takes the rest of the day - and we've already got two lines of French beans strung up in the same tunnel (but a different tunnel each year). We put the most red-spider-mite-susceptible crops all together in the same tunnel (aubergines, French beans and cucumbers) and install overhead irrigation, to keep them damp all season to stop the mite taking hold - we are still fine-tuning this system.


Harry, from London, has WWOOFed with us for 3 weeks, and will be heading back home tomorrow. Thank you Harry for coming and helping on the farm.

Harry hoeing weeds in Nigel polytunnel, with a small team planting cucumbers beyond.


One of our long-term WWOOFers left this week, after three and a half months volunteering on the farm - Jenny, from Bristol, has moved to a nearby campsite and we hope to see her back as a day volunteer very soon! Many thanks Jenny for all your help through Lockdown 3.

Jenny stringing up tomato vines in a polytunnel last Saturday.

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Bosavern training and work experience week 6

Last week Giles Rickard from Westcountry Rivers Trust and our very own Board Member Holly Whitelaw delivered inspiring talks to our trainees on soil health and the impact this has upon human health; food production; water resources; the wider ecosystem and climate.


Bosaverntraining & Work Experience is a project for unemployed adults. For details of how to join, contact Katie on 01736 272367. Funded by EU European Social Fund with support from CornwallCouncil.

Saturday, April 3, 2021

Donated equipment


Guy and Jo Clegg came to the farm yesterday and donated piles of plant pots, seed trays, crates, tools, and assorted horticultural equipment - many thanks! Guy and Jo were tenants at the farm for ten years, and were the last occupants before it became a community farm in 2010. They converted the farm to organic, erected the Mothership polytunnel, hosted WWOOFers, had a shop on site, and in many ways laid the foundations for what we have become, for all of which we are very grateful. Guy and Jo are now leaving farming, which is farming's loss, but we wish them all the best for their future, and bon voyage.

Planting the first tomatoes

On 26th and 27th March we planted the first polytunnel tomatoes of the season. These are sungold, gardeners delight, black cherry, yellow submarine, and zuckertraube, and are our early batch. Today we have sown our third and final batch - costoluto di Fiorentina, beef heart, quadro plum, and more sungolds.

Jenny planting early tomatoes in the Sausage.

Harry taking a tray of tomato plants from the Propagation Station.

Chickens released

On Thursday 1st April we were permitted by DEFRA to release our chickens back into their field. It has been difficult for them over the past fifteen and a half weeks (after 16 weeks we would not have been allowed to market their eggs as "free range" anymore), despite us constructing some spacious netted outdoor runs (they are usually free to roam throughout one hectare), and there have been more fights, more injuries and more fatalities as a result.

Thankfully DEFRA stuck to their planned release date despite two new avian flu outbreaks in the northwest of England. The nearest cases to us were in Exmouth in Devon last year, although there were reports of swans in Falmouth dying of bird flu in January. Anyway, we are all very glad to see them out and about enjoying the grass and sunshine and space and insects of their field.

The bare patch in this picture was where their outdoor enclosure was before we took it down. All the grass was gone within a few days back in December.

A few of the new girls also getting out and about for the first time in their lives.

Bosavern training and work experience week 5


Last week our trainees began to develop their fencing skills with visiting Tutor Chris Lutey. Bosavern Training & Work Experience is for unemployed adults. For details of how to join, contact Katie on 01736 272367. This project is funded by the European Social Fund with support from Cornwall Council.

Friday, April 2, 2021

Veg boxes 2nd April 2021


Picking oriental greens (pak choi, komatsuna, Chinese cabbage, giant red mustard, green-in-snow mustard).
Today's 105 veg boxes contained a selection from the following - potatoes, cauliflower, purple sprouting broccoli, spring greens, salad leaves, watercress, oriental greens, chard, mixed herbs (chives, parsley, thyme), radishes and kohl rabi.

Please email for a joining form.

New hens

On Wednesday 31st March we bought a new flock of 100 laying hens, to boost our flock number and egg production. They have moved in with 30 older hens who will show them the ropes, and will be let out into the field for their first outside experience tomorrow morning - poultry lockdown has now also ended.

Polly releasing the new hens into their new home.