Thursday, December 28, 2023

Veg boxes Friday 28th December


We are in that quiet period between Christmas and New Year, with no farmer's markets, not many shop customers, and only 2 restaurant orders, but still 63 veg boxes to pick and pack. We have done really well today despite the wind, thanks to Ross, Ailsa, Karl, Yvonne, Warren, Freddie, Emma, Margot, Tom, Lucille and Saul, and our boxes just need the final salad picking tomorrow morning to be full. This was our first week of watercress season, it looks wonderful, and we're excited!

Standard box (£13.50) - beetroot, parsley, fennel, perpetual spinach, Ambo potatoes, 3 dried chillies, salad leaves, watercress, kale, UK organic carrots, and a local organic cauliflower.

Small box (£8.50) - Ambo potatoes, 3 dried chillies, salad leaves, watercress, kale, and UK organic carrots.

Please email us on to join our not-for-profit community veg box scheme.

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Farm factoids

For our AGM on Thursday 20th November we wrote a set of facts about the community farm, one for each attendee to read out at the end of the meeting, and here they are:-

Your farm was established in 2010 making us the second-longest-running CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) project in Cornwall (Camel CSA was established in 2008).

Your farm has produced veg boxes without a break every week since our first box in June 2011.

Your farm ran courses for local unemployed adults from 2020 to 2022, for which we won St. Just Council’s Community Group of the Year trophy in 2021, and the Plunkett Foundation’s “Rural Community Business Award” for Employment and Training in 2023.

Your farm has achieved “Level 5 – Outstanding” in the RHS South West In Bloom “It’s Your Neighbourhood” section for the past nine years, and in 2023 was adjudged to be the second best community growing project in the South West of England.

Wildlife seen on the farm includes heron, barn owl, kestrel, red kite, buzzard, fox, weasel, pole cat, grey squirrel, hedgehog, roe deer, adder, Cornish chough, and slow worm (and two goldfish living in an old cattle trough).

In the 2023 season your farm grew over 700kg of tomatoes, with a value of over £4000.

Your farm has engaged with several thousand volunteers since it began in 2010, some of whom have gone on to work in the organic farming sector, including setting up their own market gardens, and even starting vegetable gardens in Rohingya refugee camps on the Myanmar border.

In a recent price check, our organic cauliflowers (bought locally with zero packaging) were selling at exactly the same price as Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

In the first Covid lockdown our veg box numbers hit a record 156 per week. Since then they have gradually reduced to just under half that amount.

In the 2022 growing season your farm produced over £58,000 of vegetables.

In 2022 in response to the cost of living crisis we set up our Community Veg Box Fund, which has so far raised £2500 from private donors, allowing us to deliver veg boxes to local people who would otherwise struggle to access fresh local healthy food.

Your farm has hosted WWOOF volunteers from all over the world, including Brazil, Argentina, Tajikistan, Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Senegal, Israel, Mexico, South Africa, Turkey, Russia, Finland, New Zealand and Australia.

Our polytunnels all have names – The Mothership, The Propagation Station, The Sausage, Valentine, Nigel, Imogen, and Castle Dracula.

Our first “farm shop” was Hugh’s Grandad’s old bathroom cabinet balanced on the concrete plinth at the roadside, selling salad bags and eggs, with a margarine tub for payments (in 2010).

We used to fill a wheelbarrow full of boxes of eggs and push it into St. Just to sell eggs round the doors.

Probably the best archaeological find to date is a carved stone spindle whorl used for hand-spinning wool several thousand years ago, found when preparing potato beds on the market garden in 2011, similar to the ones on display in Penlee Museum. We have also found knapped flints, a musket ball, a Salvation Army cap badge, and half a Spanish silver coin, as well as hundreds of clay pipe stems.

We once took a soil sample up to Duchy College to be assessed, and they told us we couldn’t grow vegetables here!

Your farm used to be a cattle farm, and for fifty years the farmer was Penrose Harvey – he died in 2021, and his niece now has an allotment on the farm.

“Bosavern” means the settlement of Afern, who is believed to have been a Danish viking.

Friday, December 22, 2023

Saffron, Eloi, and Rita

Three of our wonderful WWOOF volunteers have come to the end of their stays with us recently. Saffron returned to Bristol earlier in December, Eloi headed home to France yesterday, and Rita will be leaving tomorrow morning. Many many thanks as always to these three, and to all our volunteers, whether WWOOFers or otherwise.

Eloi and Rita (both in the centre) with our other current WWOOF volunteers yesterday.

Yesterday's sunset


We'd just finished packing our Christmas veg boxes when the sky did this, a beautiful sunset seen through the farm buildings looking out to sea.

Harvesting in a blizzard!

On Thursday 30th November we were surprised and delighted to be snowed upon whilst harvesting for veg boxes! It doesn't snow often in Cornwall, so that is probably it for the year now, and it only lasted for about 4 hours.

Conditions on the market garden were so cold and windy in the morning that we harvested indoor salad instead of leaving it for Friday morning, then did the outdoor harvesting in the afternoon, whilst the snow was melting, before whizzing up to St. Just to attend the farm's AGM... The veg boxes were finished on Friday and went out as normal, quite an achievement, so many thanks to the team!

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Merry Christmas everybody!


Plunkett award


On the 15th November our treasurer, Alan, attended the Plunkett Foundation's "Rural Community Business Awards" in London, where we were thrilled to be announced winners of the "Rural Vision Employment and Training" award. This was awarded for the work experience and training programme for local unemplyed adults that we ran from 2020 to 2022. One of our volunteers, Lil, was also announced as a joint winner of the "Young Person Award" for her volunteering here on the farm. These latest awards are testament to the incredible dedication of our volunteers and staff here at the farm as we strive hard to build community, feed local people, encourage wildlife, and be financially viable.

How the Cornishman reported the awards in their December 14th edition.

Community farm social


On Monday morning we held our Christmas coffee morning for the farm's staff, volunteers, and other members of our farm community. We met in Castle Dracula polytunnel and were treated to live music (carols on a cornet!), hot drinks, cakes, muffins, pancakes, and other festive treats. This is our way of saying thank you to our volunteers for all their hard work through the year, and of bringing people together on a cold December morning. Particular thanks have to go to Ali C for organising most of the catering, but also to everyone who helped, and those who attended.

Today's picking and packing team


We are currently picking this year's Christmas veg box - a big thank you to all our volunteers and staff who have turned out in strong winds to help us through the day - Freddie, Rita, Emma, Margot, Eloi, Ben, Ross, Karl, Quentin, Sue, Miranda, Jos, and Ailsa.

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Christmas veg boxes


Our Christmas veg boxes will be ready for collection, or being delivered, on Friday 22nd December. We will then be doing our veg boxes as normal on Fridays 29th December and 5th January 2024.

This week's small boxes (£8.50) will include - beetroot (ours), carrots (UK organic), rainbow chard (ours), mixed herbs (ours), parsnips (UK organic), potatoes (ours), and sprouts (UK organic).

This week's standard boxes (£13.50) will include - all the above, plus a cauliflower (local organic), kale (ours), and salad leaves (ours).

It is now too late to order a Christmas veg box (though not too late to order for the 29th December or later) but all the above will be available in the farm shop, which will be open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday 10am till 5pm, then re-opening on Wednesday 27th December.

The final farmer's market of the year will be in St. Just W.I Hall on Saturday 23rd from 09:30 till 12:30.

Stick insect


This stick insect was seen on a front door in Newlyn last Friday while we were out delivering veg boxes!


Gil, from Belgian, stayed with us as a WWOOF volunteer for part of November, and we loved hosting him. Thank you and a merry Christmas Gil! Here he is helping to muck out our chicken sheds on his final Wednesday as part of the team.

Winter skies


Early morning from the chicken field.

Late afternoon from Home Field.

Late afternoon over the polytunnel.
We love the drama of the winter skies here at Bosavern!!

Shop opening days over Christmas and New Year


Our farm shop will be closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day and the 2nd January. We will be open on all other days from 10am till 5pm.

We have a wide range of winter vegetable including sprouts, parsnips, carrots etc... and lots of gift ideas such as honey, beeswax candles, cards, chocolate, biscuits etc...

Monday, November 27, 2023

Veg box deliveries

Our veg box delivery round, as well as the population centres of St. Just, Penzance, St. Ives, Newlyn, and others, takes us around some very rural locations in the far west of Cornwall - Treen, St. Buryan, Heamoor, Ludgvan, Newbridge, Porthcurno, Gulval, Pendeen, Morvah, Zennor, Madron, Crean - and places in between.

Please email us at to enquire about our not-for-profit veg box scheme.

St. Just In Bloom awards 2023

Our new certificate on display in the farm shop.

Tamsin conducting the awards ceremony on Saturday evening.
Saturday 25th November saw the annual St. Just In Bloom Awards taking place in the Old Town Hall, but this year also marked the 20th anniversary of the founding of St. Just In Bloom, with a buffet and cake!! For the eleventh year in a row Bosavern Community Farm entered the "It's Your Neighbourhood" category, in which we have achieved "Level 5 - Outstanding" every year since 2015, and this year we were adjudged by the Royal Horticultural Society judges to be the second best entry in the whole of the South West of England.


"Gordon Ford Trophy - The Gordon Ford Trophy is a Discretionary Regional Award which South West In Bloom present each year to the best RHS It's Your Neighbourhood entry in our region.  It can be assessed as part of a main judging tour or as a individual assessment. The IYN should encompass all three core pillars, Horticultural, Community and Environmental responsibility, as well as reaching mark Level 5 'Outstanding'."

Thursday, November 23, 2023

Christmas Markets

There are two special markets coming up at both of which we will have a stall selling fresh veg and a wide range of other produce.

Saturday 25th November is St. Just Farmers' Market Christmas special, opening from 09:30 till 15:30, in the W.I. Hall in St. Just, with a cafe serving mulled wine, tea, coffee, and cakes, in aid of The Lafrowda Club.

Saturday 2nd December is the Winter Market in the Old Coastguard in Mousehole, opening from 11:00 till 15:00, where we will be joined by several local producers and artists, including our friends from Newlyn Fermentary - and the bar will be open for mulled wine and mince pies.

Further details are on their relevant facebook pages - and

Please come and support us and your local economy!

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Veg box numbers during Covid

Just out of interest here are the veg boxes ordered from us on this week (or thereabouts) for the past five years, showing how demand surged during Covid, and has slowly declined since the first lock-downs, but not back to pre-Covid levels.

29/11/19 - 48 veg boxes

20/11/20 - 100 veg boxes

19/11/21 - 89 veg boxes

18/11/22 - 84 veg boxes

17/11/23 - 66 veg boxes.

100 new chickens

Over the past few years we have allowed our chicken flock numbers to reduce due to the ongoing risks of avian influenza. As a result the demand for our eggs has far outstripped supply, and we have had to buy eggs from Cornhill Farm to supplement our own, particularly for our weekly veg boxes. But this year, having consulted with our volunteers, customers, and members, we have decided to boost our flock again. So on 16th May we brought another 150 chickens to the farm, and on 7th November we introduced 100 more. Avian influenza does not seem to be as prevelant this winter, so far, as in recent years, and we hope that this situation continues.

Our new chickens on their first day in their new home.

We also dragged each of the three sheds twenty metres down the field to give them all fresh pasture. And we mended all the holes and snapped posts in the fence, cut the grass around the electrical fox-proofing, and tested the electrics in preparation.

Some of our older flock on their fresh green pasture.

Tomorrow's veg boxes

We are still busy harvesting for tomorrow's veg boxes, but by the middle of tomorrow morning they will contain:-

Standard veg box (£13.50) - rainbow chard, 2 rocoto chillies, oriental greens, mixed herbs, kale, leeks, Ambo potatoes, mixed salad leaves, and Jack-be-little squashes.

Small veg box (£8.50) - 2 rocoto chillies, spring greens, kale, leeks, Ambo potatoes, and Jack-be-little squashes.

Ben picking spring greens for the small veg boxes.

A beautiful morning out on the Market Garden.

Extras available in veg boxes - Vicky's bread, free-range eggs, Treen organic milk and yoghurt, our own Cornish black bee honey, local organic apples, apple juice, Sarah & Fin's chilli relishes etc...

Storm Ciaran

Storm Ciaran hit west Cornwall on the night of Wednesday 1st November, and continued into Thursday, which is always our picking and packing day, although the strongest winds and rain had come and gone before we set out into the fields and polytunnels. Thankfully we sustained only superficial damage, and through our wonderful team of volunteers, we still managed to pick and pack everything and on time! (Well, almost, two of us were still out picking nettle-tips when it went dark and we were still a little shy of our target, but we finished those off on Friday morning).

My barometer reading well below stormy on the Saturday after the storm.

Jos and Sue outside preparing leeks for veg boxes.

Hardcore storm picking and packing team taking a well-earned morning coffee break!

With many thanks for everybody who helped on Thursday 2nd - Ben, Quentin, Sue, Freddie, Jos, Ted, Ailsa, Paul, Katie, Warren, and Miranda.

Rainbow over the market garden on Friday 3rd November.

South West Farmer of the Year 2023 Awards

On Thursday 9th November our Head Grower, Hugh, attended the awards ceremony at Somerset Cricket Ground in Taunton, as a finalist in the Sustainability Champion section. This award was won by Bill and Suzanne Harper of Trepoyle Farm, for their work in fermenting cattle dung using Bokashi, and managing their meadows to reduce run-off into the river. Sadly, this meant that Hugh came away from the night empty handed, but had represented Bosavern Community Farm and healped spread the message of community agriculture to a wider audience.

Hugh Taylor at the awards ceremony.
For a full list and photos of the award winners please see and for Trepoyle Farm see

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Dawn at our chicken sheds


Letting our chickens out at 8am sometimes seems like a chore, but often it can be a beautiful experience, and well worth getting up early for!!!

New products in the farm shop

We are extremely happy to have found local supplies of both organic apples (Shirley Jelbert near Crowlas) and organic apple juice (Chyan Community near Penryn)! Add to these our own parsnips, pumpkins, and squash (all priced at £2.50 per kg), and our farm shop has taken on an autumnal feel.

Our community farm shop is mostly run by volunteers, and is open Monday to Saturday from 10am till 5pm.

Veg boxes 27/10/23

Please support Bosavern Community Farm by joining our not-for-profit "sustainable" veg box scheme! Email us on to join our community.

Standard veg box (£13.50) - beetroot, 2 rocoto chillies, spring greens, kale, leeks, parsnips, Ambo potatoes, black winter radishes, mixed salad leaves, Jack-be-little squash.
Small veg box (£8.50) - beetroot, 2 rocoto chillies, mixed herbs, kale, leeks, Ambo potatoes, Jack-be-little squash.
All grown here on Bosavern Community Farm. All picked by hand on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and delivered on Friday to St. Ives, Penzance, St. Just, Sennen, Newbridge, Newlyn, Gulval, Ludgvan, Pendeen, Mousehole, and places in between.

Wednesday, October 18, 2023


A couple of years ago we erected a series of windbreaks across our market garden, which involved digging in fence-posts, before attaching rabbit-fence and windbreak mesh. Then in August this year, at the foot of one of these fence-posts, so probably dug out whilst digging in the post, our assistant grower Ross discovered a little collection of flints. We have had these looked at by a local archaeologist, who says that they are "worked", and in keeping with prehistoric human activity here on the farm. How exciting to know that we are working a patch of land that has been worked for many thousands of years! I hope that we are doing our ancestors proud whilst building a fair food system for future generations.

South West Farmer of the Year Awards

Bosavern Community Farm's Head Grower, Hugh, who has worked with us for 13 years, was nominated for and is now a finalist in this year's awards, as a "Sustainability Champion". To be a finalist is a great achievement, and is thanks to the many hundreds, if not thousands, of volunteers and staff who have helped on the farm since 2010. The awards ceremony is in Taunton on November 9th, which is when we will find out if he has won or not (there are three finalists). Follow the link to find out more, although the section about Bosavern is pasted below.