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Barn Transformation Project

Episode 6 Of Reaping and Sowing & Comings & Goings

No matter where you stand, looking at the pond our volunteers have made brings feelings of peace, delight and interest. There's always something to catch the eye; the way a plant reflects on the water, watching a whirligig beetle twirl across the surface or seeing a plant in full bloom.

Two frogs were spotted again this week - too quick for the camera - but we take their presence as a sign of approval. Next year we hope that the bees and insects, like this chap -

- will approve of the newly planted wildflower areas. And if you want to plant wildflower seeds, this is the best time as there's less competition from grasses. We were very pleased to see them pop up just as they should, ready for flowering next year.

Meanwhile, back at the reaping - it's always satisfying when at least some of the small things which appeared weeks ago manage to grow into big things without being eaten. There are some very fat mice somewhere thanks to the pumpkin patch!

The last of the tomatoes have been gathered for this year, and it's true, they do taste better when you grow your own. And if you haven't got a greenhouse or much space, they grow well in pots or grow bags.

As we were gathering, we witnessed the small drama of a spider pouncing on an unlucky wasp that had flown into its web. Watching it wrap the wasp in its thread was gruesome but fascinating.

Part of what nature does of course, is provide food chains - and see the newly sprouted winter lettuces below? Turns out they were providing for the local slugs. So we sowed some more, hoping that the cooler temperatures will encourage the slugs to go to sleep soon, preferably before they have the chance to get their teeth into the young cabbages on the right.

And finally, we'd like to thank all the people who came to visit us on our recent Open Day. This was part of the Big Green Week, organised by the Climate Coalition who invited communities to celebrate what they’ve been doing to tackle climate change and protect green spaces.

The team wanted to participate to celebrate the work they've been doing to create havens for wildlife, to support local ecosystem and recycle waste to make rich compost for growing veg and flowers to feed us and our pollinators.

The Open Day gave our guests the opportunity to see and hear about the work of the project over the last six months. We gave them a tour of the site, let them safely have a look at some of our bees, told them about the making of the pond and how valuable it is to wildlife then invited them to taste the delights of a home-grown home-made minestrone soup.

It was a lovely day, and seeing how much our guests enjoyed their visit and how impressed they were with what's been achieved so far, made our volunteers very proud.

Stay tuned - there's more to come.

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