Welcome one and all to the next instalment of our goings on at the Tree Life Centre, on the outskirts of Bristol. Thank you for managing to pull yourself away from the garden, or even the tennis and football, to take time out to read the blog. We hope you all have been enjoying the first proper month of the summer, whatever the weather has thrown at us; all our lovely trees have been enjoying the sudden, sharp downpours. The only downside is all the nasty pests have been enjoying the sun and humid conditions too, however we are doing our best to combat these organically as they are all part of the local ecosystem, and also prove our trees are nice and healthy too (must take positives from the situation)! Anyway, onto what we have all been up to, even with a week closed due to staffing levels with both us and or home of Grimsbury Farm, we have been extremely busy…
First off, we started the month taking part in this year’s Open Farm Sunday. As our home farm was holding an open day with an array of events for all the family we joined in and opened up to show off our hard work for people who can’t come by during the week. During the day we sold lots of home made cake (with tea and squash), held a raffle with prizes that included fruit trees and hanging baskets we made up of strawberry plants and herbs, and was also a chance to sell plants and give tours around the site. A huge thanks to everyone who came and we hope to see you again soon.
During the past month we had visits from both the local Prince’s Trust group and Sheiling School. The Prince’s Trust brought up a group of young people to promote volunteering, especially how it can help towards getting a job, and show the variety of roles available to the group. It gave them a chance to have a go at conservation and horticulture work, hopefully they all had fun and we see them again. However, if it wasn’t their cup of tea, they can at least take away that volunteering is for everyone and there are many different opportunities out there. As with the Sheiling School they brought a few of their older students with support workers to do a couple of workshops and to help the guys with the next step in life. Hopefully they enjoyed the workshops so far and want to come back for more! We are a very inclusive project and welcome people from all walks of life, if you have a group that would be interested in coming to the centre then please do get in touch, whether it’s to get involved with general volunteering or for workshops.
Finally, what have all the volunteers been up to this past month I hear you ask?! Well, alongside the usual growing activities such as looking after, and harvesting, the veg, the major project has been fixing and replacing the paths around the site which has also resulted in fixing broken sides to the beds too, depending on supplies! There has also been a continued rash of upcycling going on as we carry on the task of sorting through all the things we have stashed throughout the site over the years. This has ranged from ideas for an irrigation system to making hanging baskets from out of date hard hats. We have also found another bench frame so keep your eyes peeled for that to be turned back into a bench at some point! The clearout has now led into the brown shed being fixed up ready to be turned into a PPE storage area; this will carry on into next month as it’s a fairly major job!
We are getting ever closer to starting up the diploma courses again so if you are interested then please do get in touch. Why not come and volunteer with us before it starts to get a feel for the place and the work first!
Also, seed collecting season is nearly upon us so if you would like to learn more about growing native tree and wildflower species then why not come along and join in!
Don’t forget we are on both Facebook and Twitter so like/follow us for more up-to-date information. Also, we now have a regional Facebook page, so if you want to find out what the rest of the region is up to then you can find it here.