Calling parents, grandparents and all those who want to help children enjoy the outdoors.
ALFI and Energy Alton bring you the film
PROJECT WILD THING.
On Monday April 3, at the Wesley Room, Alton Maltings Centre, Maltings Close, Alton GU34 1DT, 7.00 for 7.30pm.
FREE event. Refreshments.
David Bond is a worried man. His kids’ waking hours are dominated by a cacophany of marketing, and a screen dependence threatening to turn them in glassy-eyed zombies… His engaging film is helping to lead a movement to encourage children to get outside and enjoy nature, improving their health and wellbeing. ‘It’s not the kids who don’t want to put their hands in the mud.. it’s the adults who have said no.’ Chris Packham
This year ALFI is setting out to interest children in the joys of gardening, cooking with fresh vegetables, herbs and fruit – and eating the results.
We are already supporting local schools gardening clubs and this year we are giving each primary school an apple tree.
We will have recipes, and articles in our newsletters to encourage children, parents and grandparents to find new ways of enjoying fresh seasonal and local food. Children love getting dirty hands, planting seeds and seeing the seedlings grow. and they love cooking so this can be a good way to get them to try some foods which they might otherwise reject. We also plan to have some children’s activities at our regular events – ideas and recipes gratefully received!
On Sunday February 28, on a cold but sunny morning, a team of volunteers joined Ann at the Vicarage Plot and spent a most satisfying two hours planting and putting up supports. We soon warmed up as we dug holes to plant 6 stepover apple trees along the edges of the raised beds, and blueberry plants along the front. These all came from Southern Fruit Trees nursery in Blackmoor where Mike is always ready to advise on the most suitable trees and varieties.
Sheila had donated three healthy-looking apple trees in large pots which were planted behind the beds. And at the west side of the plot James put up a trellis for 2 fan-trained red currants to be tied up. Liz brought some welcome coffee over from St Lawrence Parish Hall, and Councillor Robert Saunders joined us for a photograph. ALFI is most grateful to him for a grant which has enabled us to buy the plants and materials for this additional planting.
On the following day, we also pruned the apple and pear trees at the Jubilee Field, where we hope to get a good crop of fruit this year – weather permitting!
On Monday July 11th we will start our AGM at 7.00pm at the Vicarage Plot to see how it is progressing, (and maybe to sample some produce?) before going on to the Railway Arms for our meeting, refreshments and socialising.
Lovely to see so many people taking seeds away on Seedy Saturday. We hope everyone will get satisfaction from sowing and growing these. Don’t forget that any spare seedlings will be welcome at our Seedling Swap on Saturday May 7th, (10.00am -3.00pm) as part of the Craft Market in Cross and Pillory Lane. You can bring seedlings to swap and take others away. A good way to try new varieties!
The children’s competition entries are in and being judged this week. Look out for results on our front page.
The plots are all looking good and being most productive. Lettuces, broad beans, radish, rocket, carrots, peas, and bunches of sweet peas have already been harvested. There will soon be potatoes, French beans, beetroot and other crops coming along.
From the new Vicarage plot there have been some strawberries, redcurrants and gooseberries.
Herbs are growing in lots of beds and planters and we hope people will snips bunches for their own use.
Up at the Jubilee field, the apple trees have a promising number of apples coming along, though the plum tree is having a rest this year.
And we have two supporters now looking after the Sensory garden at the Limes, a new venture for us.
The circular concrete planters opposite the Railway Arms are looking both decorative and productive now with a mixture of flowers and vegetables.
A lovely sunny day in the beautiful Allen Gallery garden brought lots of people to see the stalls set up by a number of charities.
ALFI had a tombola with a lot of garden-linked prizes and a fun activity for children to sow cress seed on an egg shell head, so that when the cress grew they could give it a ‘hair cut’.
Thanks to all who helped – we raised about £70 to help fund our plots and planters. Visitors were able to admire the ALFI raised beds there, planted with herbs and flowers which attract bees and butterflies.