Thursday, 12 January 2023

Happy New Year and a post about fabulous fungi

 
We love fungi's other-worldliness and are happy that they are finally getting the attention they deserve. Fungi are brilliant at breaking down difficult compounds, like cellulose, allowing others to use the nutrients and energy trapped within the materials. These materials are unavailable until the fungi get to work.

In our community garden they are breaking down all sorts, but the fruiting bodies in our garden are mostly associated with our abundance of old logs, especially on the Hugelkultur  mound where logs had been buried.

In addition to breaking materials, fungi form massive networks in our soil, distributing nutrients, water and more. They are also a social network as plants connect and pass information through the mycelium.This mass of fungal mycelium criss-crossing the land under our feet is now known as the Wood Wide Web. You can learn more here

We are a garden closely linked to permaculture, and as much of permaculture is about designing for sustainable living through learning from and copying nature, perhaps we can learn from and copy our fungal friends as we work together in our garden.

In this Soil Food Web School Blog, they reflect on the wisdom of fungal interactions and how four principles of stable mutualistic partnerships in nature might apply to helping humans create a more harmonious society.

Principle One: Both organisms in an enduring partnership receive net benefits in a reinforcing feedback loop.

Principle Two: Partners trade different resources or services.

Principle Three: Each partner organism can readily provide the resources they collect in abundance.

Principle Four: Partners respond and adapt to each other and their changing environments and contexts.

Yes we can learn from and copy that!

 


Wednesday, 21 December 2022

Happy Xmas from the ECCG

 


We had snow in Cambridge and this is the meeting hut looking like a fairytale image in a wintry landscape. 

If you are considering donating to a good cause, please help our garden by sponsoring our meeting hut.


Happy Christmas and a Serene New Year!




Saturday, 19 November 2022

Our annual review and our fundraising goals for 2023


 



November is upon us. It is rainy and colder but it's not as cold as in previous years. Despite the dry summer we had really good crops due to the diligence of volunteers who came and watered. It has been an exciting year with the new hut being built and we are fundraising for the final touches. The hut has been already used by a local organisation and with our already existing compost toilet we can welcome local groups who need a place to meet.

Thank you for our roving volunteers at AstraZeneca who came back again and contributed to a number of projects with manpower and resources.

Please click on images to enlarge them and read about the wonderful things that happened this year. 

A big thank-you to Transition Cambridge for their support and all those who donated time and resources. To those who moved on, we remember you with gratitude and hope you come back to see us.













Sunday, 16 October 2022

October at ECCG and exciting hut updates - please donate!

The ECCG this month

 

Autumn is in full swing but the garden is still so green and pleasant. There has been great progress with the meeting hut, a true labour of love with plenty of recycling of materials... We have a lovely indoor/outdoor feature involving bottles, they look like precious jewels and sparkle in the sun.


We are fundraising for more improvements, please visit our page here.


 



Inside the meeting hut, John and Charlotte have been busy making it cosy. There is now a kitchenette and a kettle! We do have an outdoor kettle powered by twigs and it will still come out but think of raining days in the hut, workshops and all-day events (we do have a compost toilet already).


The roof has solar panels but they are proving to be a challenge to instal. Thank you so much to all the volunteers, people and companies who donated to make this project possible. We could not have done it with you - a big thank to Charlotte and her team of builders for making this happen. We are all excited about the future.

If you read this and are not a member, leave a comment with your email and we will subscribe you to our gmail group. Or you can contact Charlotte. 

We also gratefully accept donations in money and kind. Contact Charlotte if you'd like to help.

Charlottecsynge@googlemail.com - tel. 07752 143683.


Thursday, 29 September 2022

News from ECCG

We had a very dry summer in the UK and everywhere in Cambridge the grass was looking like straw. The watering rota was crucial for the survival of our fruit and veggies. Right now Szechuan peppers are ready, so are the apples, basil, tomatoes and beetroot. 


Ben found this lovely creature earlier in the summer. Charlotte loves toads with their golden eyes. 


She sent us a few lines of poetry: "Ask a toad what is beauty ...; he will answer that it is a female with two great round eyes coming out of her little head, a large flat mouth, a yellow belly and a brown back.".





Earlier this summer we had AstraZeneca volunteers helping with the meeting hut; here are a few photos...







On a sad note, we said goodbye to Elisabeth and Didier, who have been part of the garden for many years and returned to France. Photos are posted with permission.





We finish with a song: Empty Common Garden Bee

(The Bladog Bee)

A bee there was just flying around

in the Empty Common garden.

It heard the sound of our music fine,

and said," I beg your pardon!

Who asked you here

to disturb the calm of this lovely garden idyll?

Not us, we say

Just go away!

Take your flutes and horns and fiddle!"

Well it stung the flute, and it stung the fiddle

We could see that it wasn't keen

as it chased us round the vegetables

in this lovely garden green.



Tuesday, 2 August 2022

AstraZeneca comes back to ECCG



Another cohort of green-fingered volunteers from AstraZeneca visited the garden in July. We documented what they did for us in these lovely photos.

Thank you so much for contributing to our community garden with your hard work.

The Garden still needs volunteers, if you would like to join, please get in touch.