Newsletter – February 2021

For printable version, click here

Although I am very late in doing this, a Happy New Year to you all and here’s hoping that things are starting to improve!!

In our November update we said we were hoping to re-open in March but so much has happened since then!!

At the beginning of January, we were advised by the Village Hall committee that whilst we were in Tier 3, we were unable to use the Village Hall and then “Lockdown”

Whilst some of us have already had the vaccination, many of our members will be still waiting so to re-open in March is out of the question, even if we come out of lockdown and are in a lower tier than 3. 

We are, therefore, now looking to April, even if we get too short notice to organise a speaker, we could possibly have a social evening to make up for losing out on our December AGM.

We are still hoping to hold our Plant Sale on the 9th May, even if it has to be in the car park and our celebrity speaker – Charles Downing – is still booked for July 2021.


As you are aware our year ends on the 30th November and we had planned to hold our AGM on the 15th December, 2020.

In accordance with our rules, our Treasurer, Gail, closed the 2019/2020 accounts and had them audited. To prove we haven’t done a runner with the money, click here to see the accounts!!

The Hereford Seed Swap team have come up with a way of swapping seed that should make it possible for at least some of us to exchange seed this year.

The proposal is for local communities to locate a place to leave a covered box where donated seed can be left for exchange. A seed ‘drop and swap’ in fact.

They will “seed” the boxes in the venues below with about 200 vegetable and flower seed packets, provided by the team and the Heritage Seed Library (HSL).  The flowers include packets of local wildflower seeds to sow in or alongside your vegetable plots to help attract bees etc.

The teams’ boxes will be on public display as of February 13th and will stay in situ as long as there is demand for them.

The venues for the boxes they are organising are:

Stoke Prior (Katya Copeland): The stable at Fir Tree Cottage in the village. It’s a black and white house on the lane towards Risbury.
Orleton (Marjan Bartlett-Freriks): in her front porch at The Bay Horse, Orleton SY8 4HF
Fownhope (Frank Hemming): the shop at Coo Corner, opposite the Green Man.
Little Birch (Jon Sklan): in his garden shed at Laburnum House, Parish Lane, Little Birch.
Wellington (Keith Arrowsmith): Wellington Village Stores, HR4 8AX
Pudleston (Keith Arrowsmith): Pudleston Village Hall, HR6 0QY – green shed at back of hall.

Up to date information on everything above can be found on the Hereford Seed Swap Facebook page 

If you have any seeds to donate, to comply with Covid protocol, these must be packeted.

The first garden to open in 2021 will be Edge Villa, Edge, nr Yockleton on Sunday 11th April (2 – 5 pm).  Tickets can be purchased on the day or in advance on the NGS website.

In between making use of her produce to make pickles and kimchi – if you use Instagram you can follow what she’s up to at @thegreedygardener – and tidying up her potting shed Marjan Bartlett-Freriks has been listening to podcasts and recommends:

            The Organic Gardening podcast (award winning)
            Fresh from the Pod – Tamsin Westhorpe (Stocktonbury Gardens)
            Charles Dowding – blog

Marjan also took some pictures of her garden in the last frost and thought you may enjoy them, so they have been used throughout this page.

 It is still possible to place orders for seeds, etc from Marshall and T&M but, a reminder, to obtain your discounts, these must be placed through Monica.

 Just a reminder, Monica still has supplies of gloves, vermiculite and rootrainer replacement cells.

Keep safe and keep gardening – we will need all those spare plants for the Plant Sale!!