We are really happy to have live music on again at BPCG!  On the evening of Friday 30th July the fantastic duo Faith i Branko return to the Greenhouses.  This is a gig not to be missed.  To find out more and to book your food and music, or music only ticket,  visit https://www.brockwellgreenhouses.org.uk/event/faith-i-branko/

On Sunday 15th August 6.30pm to 10.30pm Gerry Lyseight runs an evening at BPCG with Alvorado, the UK’s leading choro ensemble, instrumental music from Rio de Janeiro. DJ Ritu said of Alvorado: “A tight-knit family of virtuosos…. One of the most exciting bands in London” Find out more and get your music or music+food tickets here https://www.brockwellgreenhouses.org.uk/event/mambista-at-the-community-greenhouses-2/

In the garden this week, if you have been watching the changing succession of flowering plants in our meadow, you may have noticed how some of the earlier flowerers, aquilegia, followed by honesty, foxgloves, then wild carrots, (and very soon evening primroses, vipers bugloss, scabious, and hollyhocks to name by a few) will move from flowering to setting seed. We think it would be good to collect some of these seeds so that we can grow these plants again from seed next year, both for the meadow and also for selling to the public, who may be inspired by our meadow to try creating one of their own!

Seed collecting is very much a summer activity as this is the time of year when many plants set seed. When thinking about collecting and seed saving it is important to allow the seed heads to fully ripen. ( If you pick seed heads too early, before they have started turning brown, they may not have matured sufficiently to produce viable seed.)

It is best to pick seed heads on a dry day because this help avoid them suffering from mould, which will damage the seeds. After collecting the seed heads, the seed needs to be separated from the surrounding plant material including seed cases. Many seeds are contained in seed cases, for example the large rounded seed heads of poppies. The seed heads look attractive but the seeds we want to collect are contained inside. In extracting the seeds it is easy to gets plant debris, and bits of plant stems, leaves all in the mix as well as some low quality, infested or infected seeds, and also seeds of different species that are not the ones we plan to collect.

Debris and damaged seeds can spread infection, therefore only good quality viable seeds should be stored and damaged or non-viable seeds should be disposed of. You can usually tell if seeds are viable because these are nice and firm and plump. Seeds that are flat and soft are usually not viable, and ones that have had holes bored in them by various insects and also not good to save.  We will be harvesting , drying and cleaning seed much of this summer as well as collecting the seed heads for our winter wreath making workshops.

Other garden activities this week…..We need to start harvesting our chard, cabbages and other leafy crops. And our sweet peas! When you come to volunteer, please don’t be shy to ask if you can have some to take home with you. We need it to be eaten!

In preparing for the building of the Brockwell Barn, we will be clearing the cuttings room, the space at the back of the upper greenhouse, and sorting out plants that are in there.  We will also be sorting out plants in the cold frames.

The grape vine in the herb garden needs pruning and from the stems we cut off we will be making cuttings.

In other BPCG news

On Saturday 14th August, it’s our volunteer party. Please bring a dish and/or a bottle. There will be music, food and entertainment.  It’s going to be lovely and we hope you can make it!  So do save the date.  7pm to 11pm. Email if you’d like to get involved in organisation/ contribute entertainment.

We are looking for women volunteers to help in our 2 month project: ‘Walk, Stretch and Talk’ – a Yoga,  English Language and Well Being Project for Refugee and Migrant Women run by our resident yoga teacher Sally Ramsden at BPCG on Wednesday lunchtimes. We need women to volunteer from 12.30 to 2.30. And/or help clear up and put things away after.  If you are interested in helping, please contact sallyconnecting@gmail.com.  (NB. Whilst continuity it a big plus, we do not expect you to be able to come to every Wednesday session over the summer holiday time!).