DEFRA lifts ban on neonics

DEFRA lifts ban on neonics

Garden Organic is dismayed to learn that DEFRA has granted permission to farmers to begin using neonicotinoids again on rape seed oil crops from this autumn. The Government granted this temporary derogation, following pressure from the National Farmers Union (NFU), who recently submitted a second emergency application for their use.

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London Major, Boris Johnson at School Market Place

City Hall hosts School’s Marketplace for a second year

The Mayor of London’s Food Programme team opened the doors of the prestigious City Hall to welcome ten London schools to hold their very own Schools Marketplace on Thursday 9th July 2015. The event was a mouth-watering showcase for delicious food grown in London’s schools from jams and chutneys, to salads, herbs, cordials, dips and more. The Schools Marketplace, was the grand finale of Grow Your Own Picnic 2015, a term-long celebration of food growing in London schools.

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Rob Smith - Winner BBC's Big Allotment Challenge

BBC's Big Allotment Challenge winner visits Ryton Organic Gardens

Rob Smith winner of the BBC’s Big Allotment Challenge enjoyed a visit to Ryton Organic Gardens today, Friday 19th June.

Rob, one of our Heritage Seed Library (HSL) Seed Guardians, was seen on the BBC series earlier this year growing and showing our HSL varieties including Trifetti chilli and Boothby's blonde cucumber. His inspiration for growing these varieties began back in his childhood.

Rob says: “I began growing heritage varieties when I realised that the produce I’d grown with my Grandad had much more flavour – the taste takes me back to my childhood.

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Garden Organic welcomes French weedkiller announcement

Garden Organic welcomes the announcement that France has banned over the counter sales of a brand of weedkiller from garden centres after the active ingredient, glyphosate, was classified as “probably carcinogenic to humans” by the World Health Organisation.

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Gardeners' Question Time visit

Garden Organic shares its expertise on BBC Gardeners' Question Time

The Garden Organic team were delighted to welcome BBC Gardeners’ Question Time to Ryton Organic Gardens on, Monday 15th June, for a recording of the post bag edition of the flagship Radio 4 gardening programme.

The programme’s Chair, Eric Robson, presenters; Bob Flowerdew, Pippa Greenwood and Matthew Wilson joined Garden Organic’s Horticultural experts; Bob Sherman, Sally Cunningham and Anton Rosenfeld to answer questions sent in by Gardeners' Question Time listeners.

James Campbell, Chief Executive, Garden Organic said:

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Gardening Scotland

Scottish growers turn out in force at Gardening Scotland

At the end of May we attended Gardening Scotland at the Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh, supported by a team of enthusiastic members. The show gave us a great opportunity to talk about the work of the charity, encourage more people to grow organically and invite new people to support our charitable work by becoming members.

Despite the cold and windy weather, almost 33,000 people visited the three day show, and many stopped by our stand in the Living Garden area to say hello.

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Sheepdrove AGM

Garden Organic welcomed more than 100 members to AGM

Garden Organic welcomed more than 100 members from across the country to the Annual General Meeting at Sheepdrove Organic Farm in Berkshire last Thursday, 14th May.

Chief Executive James Campbell shared Garden Organic’s key successes during the last year; from engaging with local organic groups, an increased presence at horticultural events, to the wider promotion of our Heritage Seed Library; as well as plans to celebrate the charity’s Diamond jubilee in 2018.

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Increase your school meal take up logo

Increase Your School Meal Take Up - Free training for In-house school cooks

A free school support package, funded by the DfE, has been launched in England to kick start school meal take up in junior, middle, secondary, special schools and PRU. The package includes training, action plans and expert regional support. Find out more and register today: This two-part workshop is designed for inhouse cooks, and delivered by those who are themselves experienced school cooks. The workshop gives practical advice and information on how to support an increase in take up, including:

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Cape Teaser

Winning title for Heritage Seed Library tomato

Congratulations to James Pollard winner of our Heritage Seed Library (HSL) competition to name our latest variety of Heritage tomato with the title "Cape Teaser".

When the tomato seeds were sent was sent in by a member from Taunton they was nameless, so it was given the working name ‘Orange’. This year the variety underwent trials to assess its suitability for inclusion in the collection and has now been officially accepted. Cape Teaser will be available in the 2016 catalogue for our HSL members, from December.

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Growing From Your Roots

Garden Organic awarded Growing From Your Roots project

Garden Organic is delighted to announce it’s been awarded £71,900 from the Heritage Lottery Fund towards the Growing From Your Roots project.

The project will document the stories behind the exotic crop plants being grown by multi-cultural communities in and around Birmingham and the West Midlands. The project will look at how this produce first came to be grown in the UK, the challenges of growing in the British climate and the importance of growing these crops, to individuals and communities.

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