Last Thursday we were invited to attend a workshop by Transform. Only David and I could attend it but we are pleased to share our experience.
After the ice-breaking questions and greetings, there was a presentation about Transform, here are the highlights: they've opened 49 sites in the last one and a half year, that's a total of 5,7 hectares of ground and 492 volunteering hours have been used there! It all sounds awesome but for me -you may call me a weirdo- the most amazing number was 1608 reused items!!! I'm talking here about finding a shoe used as a pot for a plant!!! How come we didn't think about that earlier? Well, Gary used some doors to create a square raise bed and we've been using some plastic pots from some coffee shops but SHOES??? Ok, it doesn't mean the 1608 items were shoes but it's all I can think about right now. I'm already thinking about all the stuff I could bring to be reused. What about you guys? Any ideas?
Once the presentation was over, we were invited to join several "training tables" and David and I decided to split so that we could get as much information as possible so I joined the food growing table where I got an amazing big sowing and harvesting calendar (which I will leave in the garden for all of us to have a look at). We learned a lot of useful tips there thanks to the nice and patient Jack, we were all pretty newbies and he could manage to answer every single silly questions we had. We asked about how to avoid our plants to be eaten by insects and I heard something about pesticides but i didn't pay much attention there cause we ain't killing nothing! but I did pay attention to the advice about having a pond and hope for the best and the insects to be there and leave our babies alone! Also, they suggested we could cover the pots with plastic bottles (more re-using staff ) to prevent them from freezing and he helped us how to face the moment: "How do we organise the raise beds?" It was really interesting.
David joined a table to talk about where we can find people interested in gardening and volunteering with us. We should start by checking allotment lists, in Tower Hamlets Council, and places like ELBA, Good Gym, Corporate volunteers, Bromley-by-Bow centre, etc. Well, thanks to the ungodly under the rain leaftleting session that Simon and me had to do (no, it wasn't that hard) we got some people interested, let's welcome them and grow!
From this humble blog and from the rest of the Green Phoenix Gardeners, we'd like to say thanks to Transform, specially Sumi, Jack and Rosie for this session and we hope to see you soon in future workshops!