Sunday, October 19, 2014

Deal's October Seedy Saturday .....

We had a great day on Saturday at our our 4th Seedy Saturday at the Landmark Community Garden on Deal High Street.

Very busy with people coming armed with seeds to swap, plants and cuttings to donate or just pop-ing in to see what it was all about.

Our first attempt of the Apple Press went well; With probably the best apple juice in, if not the world, but then definitely in Deal that morning. We used the pop-up stove to make on the site spiced apple with herbs from the garden

Imogen did some of her world famous Blinis with Beetroot and Onion relish from the garden.
The Deal Station Garden were in force after giving the station garden a tidy up and renewed the 'Poems on the Platforms'

Lots of thanks: Donated organic apples from Huguenot Farm nr Blean (thank you Carole Sturgeon & Bill Howarth); Tracy's friend in Folkestone who lent the Press; Everyone who donated plants. Thank you to Andy Garland at BBC Radio Kent; Tracy and Imogen for organising and all our great volunteers from Deal With It's projects at the Landmark and Deal Station Garden. 

All our photos are here

We had a little over £50 in donations towards the Gardens.

We have plenty of plants left so pop in at the Garden any Saturday to see if any take your fancy.

The next Seedy Saturday will be in Feb 2015 but we may do  pop-up event for the Winter Solstice

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Victoria's Green Matters - 16th October 2014

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury: A recent report tells us of the success of environmental campaign group Greenpeace in its protest against oil company Shell’s plans to drill for oil in the Arctic.

Greenpeace has been targeting toy maker Lego which has had a contract with Shell since 1960 to distribute toys in petrol stations in 26 countries around the world. As a result of the campaign Lego has agreed not to renew its current contract with Shell. This has raised awareness with the public and many people have found that they dislike the fact that the toy maker has been in, what they see as, an inappropriate partnership with the oil giant.

As a result of the ongoing Greenpeace campaign, Shell announced, in January, that it was putting on hold its plans to drill in the Arctic in the summer although it gave its reasons as poor market conditions and internal failures. However, it then submitted plans in August to the US authorities for a new offshore drilling plan that could see the company drilling for oil off the North West coast of Alaska in 2015. For Greenpeace, the campaign goes on.

It is imperative that investment is put into renewable technologies, not into technologies that will produce oil the use of which will contribute to climate warming. It is horrendous to think that there could possibly be drilling for oil in a pristine ecosystem such as the Arctic and if this is allowed to go ahead, how long before applications are made for Antarctica?

Sunday, October 12, 2014

'Seedy Saturday' 18th October Landmark Community Garden

The next Seedy Saturday, seed and cutting swap, is on Saturday 18th October at the LandMark Community Garden, Deal High Street from 11am.

At this edition we also have an apple press lent to us. We have had a donation of organic apples from Carole & Bill Howarth at Huguenot Farm nr Blean.

People are welcome to bring apples for pressing but please ensure they are sliced and diced at home.

·       If you have not been to one of our Seedy Saturday's before, the idea is bring some seed (either some left-overs which you had some success this season or some you have harvested from a crop this year) or cuttings and swap.

As well as seeds there is a lot of knowledge to be swapped as well! Can be a bit choatic but is definately fun!
·         Free but we do take donations for the Garden. 

For further information contact or find us on Twitter at @Deal_WithIt or on Facebook (we have a page and a group)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Victoria's Green Matters - 9th October 2014

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury A recent report from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) has found that 2.5 Earths is required to maintain the UK’s present rate of human consumption; the USA requires 4 Earths and the world as a whole, 1.5 Earths.

It is quite frightening to read that half the number of creatures from land, rivers and seas are being destroyed as humans kill them for food in unsustainable numbers or are polluting and destroying their habitats. This has happened over the last four decades. These figures were ascertained by analysing 10,000 different populations covering 3,000 species in all and then used to create a ‘Living Planet Index (LPI) which shows the state of all 45,000 known vertebrates.

As well as an indication of biodiversity, the LPI can be used to work out our ‘ecological footprint’ – that is, the rate at which we are using up natural resources. At present, we are cutting down trees faster than they can re-grow; we are taking water from rivers and aquifers faster than our rainfall can refill them; we are catching fish faster than the oceans can replace them and we are emitting more greenhouse gas than the forests and oceans can absorb.

This report should be a wake-up call for us all. In 2015, the countries of the world are due to meet in Paris to form a new global climate agreement and to agree a set of sustainable development goals. We also need to take this opportunity to reverse the decline in wildlife. Victoria Nicholls.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Deal Station Garden - Tidy up 11th Oct

As our growing season draws to an end, the DEAL STATION GARDENING GROUP invites all its supporters to turn out for a CELEBRATORY TIDY UP on Saturday 11th October, please drop in between 12-1:30pm.

We very much appreciate all the kind words of appreciation of our edible decorative efforts.

 During the season we have often been happy to see people carefully helping themselves to ripe produce such as strawberries, rhubarb, herbs,gooseberries and runner beans.

DSGG volunteers have regularly harvested sweetcorn, runner beans, beetroot, chard for the Salvation Army's kitchen.

We started last year with 13 volunteers but numbers have now dropped and we NEED more volunteers - Come and lend a hand on Sat 11th and find out how the odd hour of your time can help our town.

With enough hands we would like to clear tubs and planters, compost green waste, collect seeds and plant up pots (to take to the SEEDY SATURDAY at the LANDMARK on 18th October), harvest beetroot, herbs, beans and chard, plant up onions and flowers for the winter season .


Sunday, October 5, 2014

TTIP Day of Action 11th Oct - Deal Stall

A European wide day of action against  the US/EU Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)  is happening on Saturday 11th October with local stalls in Deal, Dover and Canterbury

Deal -St Georges from 11am

Dover - Town Hall Dover 11am

Canterbury - Buttermarket from 10:30

TTIP would give massive powers to corporate interests over nationally democratically decided policies such as health andenergy through a 'harmonisation' on effectively the lowest quality standard.

 For more information on TTIP see  here

Victoria's Green Matters - 2nd October 2014

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury :A scheme to protect local communities and sea walls from erosion was completed recently on the Steart peninsula in Somerset. The £20 million project will create a salt marsh which will absorb high tides and storm waves and create a valuable wildlife habitat.

While there has been criticism of the scheme, the Environment Agency (EA) and the Wildlife and Wetlands Trust (WWT) argue that the scheme is an example of working with nature to combat the problems of violent winter storms and rising sea levels.

At high tide, sea water is allowed to enter the low lying land of the peninsula through a 200 metre gap in the coastal embankment of the river Parrett. This area of shallow gradient and coarse vegetation will absorb wave energy as salt marsh is a natural flood risk management scheme. It is like mangroves and coral reefs in the tropics, taking the energy out of the tide and reducing wave height. It will not only protect homes by easing pressure on sea defences such as walls but also the National Grid connections to the power station at Hinkley Point. The area is being managed as farmland and a nature reserve.

It has become clear that it is vitally important to work with nature rather than against it and the consequences of our efforts to control nature are usually unfortunate, leaving us with yet more problems.

Climate change is here and now and we need to be bold if we are to mitigate its effects.

Victoria Nicholls. Transition Deal

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Gleaning Apples in Kent ... Sunday 5th Oct

Calling all Gleaners!

Are apples the apple of your eye? We've got just the thing for you. We've found thousands of apples going to waste on a farm in Kent, near Canterbury! This Sunday 5th October, we'll be going on a mission to save as many as possible of these fantastic fruits for charity, and an idyllic day out on the farm! All produce going via our good friends at FareShare, CFE and Food For All to charities dealing with food poverty.

If you haven't gleaned with us before, scroll down for more info below to whet your appetite.

Email ASAP to sign up, providing the following:

1. Confirmation that you can attend the whole day (roughly 10am-5pm, TBC)
2. Your mobile number so we can keep in touch on the day
3. Where you'll be travelling from so we can group you with other volunteers travelling to the farm
(travel will predominantly be by bus to the farm in Wingham)
4. If you're travelling by car, whether you can offer lifts, and if so for how many people?
5. Details of any allergies or medical conditions we should know about for first aid purposes, and
6. The same information for anyone you plan to bring with you - we really need to know numbers, so please try to let us know in good time if you are bringing others!

We’ll then send you finalised details closer to the time.

Please get in touch ASAP so we have an idea of numbers. Also, please do check whether you can make it, as lots of drop-outs at the last minute can jeopardise the gleaning day going ahead.

Travel expenses can be covered for those travelling from Kent – just check with us first. There may also be a few London places available, with priority to Kent gleaners. Travel to the farm will predominantly by bus

If you're receiving this you're already on our gleaning list, but if your friends want to receive emails about future gleaning days, get them to sign up to our gleaning list here.

And here's some background about gleaning:

Gleaning is about working with farmers who, for reasons usually beyond their control, have large amounts of healthy, edible food that they cannot harvest and that at risk of going to waste. We step in with our band of volunteers (that's you!) to harvest the food and redistribute it to homelessness and food insecurity causes.

In 2013, we gleaned approximately 48 tonnes of produce, equal to over 200,000 meals, with over 200 volunteers across 18 gleaning days. We launched gleaning hubs in Kent, Cambridgeshire, Sussex, Bristol, London and Manchester, and we hope over the coming year to expand to other regions like Lincolnshire and Scotland, and around Europe! We also achieved extensive media coverage, including Channel 4's River Cottage, the Guardian, BBC Radio 4's Food Programme, R4's Farming Today and BBC South East news. You can see some great short videos about us, too - by the Guardian, by Al Jazeera and by ITV Meridian news. And we've recently become won theBBC Food and Farming Awards, in the category of Best Initiative in British Food!

If you can't join us this time, watch this space – we’ll have lots more gleaning days coming up as harvests come to an end for lots of the wonderful produce here in Kent so keep your eyes peeled for dates and locations where you can join us. You can see what a glorious way it is to spend the day here.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Victoria's Green Matters - 25th Sept 2014

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury :A recent report from meteorologists has informed us that there are more greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere now than at any time in the past. Despite many countries trying to de-carbonise their power production, many more are going all out for industrial growth with fossil fuels as a base.

It is difficult to expect developing countries, who want to follow our example and have all the amenities that we have, to slow their development to take into consideration climate change. Many countries, however, do have a much more sustainable lifestyle than us because they are not as industrialised and they are also likely to suffer the more serious effects of a warming planet. The oceans are becoming far more acidic with the absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This has a catastrophic effect on the food chain and this has consequences for many species around the world.

We have all enjoyed a very long summer here this year that has also given us sufficient rain to keep our gardens looking good. What if future years give us much more heat but no rain? This is always a possibility as the climate warms. We do not know what kind of winter we will have as yet and dread the thought of another winter of torrential rain and awful flooding.

The world is becoming perilously close to leaving it too late to tackle the problems of excessive carbon emissions – let us hope that nations will work together for a low carbon future. Victoria Nicholls. Transition Deal.