14 Sept 2017. Volunteer Heather organised soil-testing at the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park with samples from four areas of the garden. There had been speculation that the soil might tend to be acid, because we have never added any alkaline feed such as bonemeal and there is a lot of leaf fall from surrounding trees in the park. All the samples were a neutral pH, which is fairly healthy for most of our crops, but we may add moderate alkaline nutrients when we mulch in the winter.
7 Sep 2017. See pics on flickr. Six volunteers at the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park were busy with the harvest today and with looking forward to the next season. Runner beans have been so plentiful and quick to mature that we took some for seed as well as putting bags on offer at the Coach House cafe in return for donations. We sowed rocket and lettuce, encouraged by the quick germination and growth of recent sowings in the warm, wet weather.
31 Aug 2017. See pics on flickr. It was an action-packed day for eight volunteers at the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park. As well as harvesting, displaying produce and collecting donations, we welcomed parents and children from local playgroups and nurseries, who enjoyed watching and helping with the bean and potato harvest.
10 Aug 2017. See pictures on flickr Seven volunteers worked hard today to bring in the harvest of potatoes, runner beans, spinach and beetroot. The main picture shows volunteer Eleanor lifting BF-15 potatoes - the name comes from the more evocative 'Belle de Fontenay'. We gave some produce to regular or to casual visitors and took the remainder to the Coach House cafe in return for donations.
Thursday 3 Aug 2017. See pics on flickr The harvest continued with a mouth-watering crop of runner beans as well as potatoes, beetroot, chard and spinach. Our stock of onions and garlic is gradually going down as park and care visitors take produce and make donations. We have grown a diverse selection of potatoes and volunteers have tested the varieties to compare the qualities so that we can give visitors more information about the produce.
27 July 2017. See pics on flickr. Eight dedicated volunteers brought in our harvest today, including the sweet and golden Marvel of Venice runner beans; Red Burgundy potatoes and the more prosaically named BF-15 early potatoes; spinach, chard, french beans and beetroot. The garden is full of flowers: the Mandarin Ducklings Nursery's sunflowers, a wall of flowers on the Scarlet Emperor bean plants, and a bed of carnations, gladioli and dahlias.
20 July 2017. Featured photo is a Comma butterfly on a potato plant. See all pics on flickr. Six volunteers were busy with the harvest at the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park: spinach, french beans, mangetout, Shetland Black and Ratte potatoes and beetroot. The combination of warmth and rain has given a great boost to growth.
Prisoners of war were amongst those who worked to keep the country fed and functioning during and after the Second World War. Stuart Derrington wrote to us about the photo (featured and below) from his wife's family album:
I attach the photo that we have of [my wife's] father HEINRICH (HENRY) SITZBERGER who is second on left in the back row, to his right on the end is WILLI PAULOWSKI.
We think that the photo would have taken about 1946/7 when he was working there at Cheeseman's.
13 July 2017. See pics on flickr. Local chef Mikala McCormick sourced produce from the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park today for our Taste of Richmond event on Saturday – tickets available here! We are proud to supply onions, garlic, chard, herbs and a selection of edible and decorative flowers to be cut on the actual day.
6 July 2017. See pics on flickr. Today we welcomed two community plot-holders, our most enthusiastic customer for garden produce and groups of children and adults from the Mandarin Ducklings nursery and the Marble Hill Playgroup. Last week's produce had been eagerly taken by visitors to the Coach House Cafe and other customers. More than £43 in donations was brought back to the office.