Author Archives: ttsnsue

GIY comes to Dorset!

Grow it Yourself International is a global movement of food growers that started in Ireland and aims to create a healthier, happier, world by encouraging everyone to grow some of their own food. There are now over 50,000 GIYers worldwide and over 800 food growing projects involved in the movement. The latest GIY group has started up in Dorset.

GIY Dorset will meet on the first Wednesday of each month starting from 5 February 2014. The meetings are free and are at the Woodhouse Gardens Pavilion at Blandford Forum. Group organizer, Wendy Pillar, says ‘GIY Dorset is a social group where everyone interested in growing food can get together, learn from each other, and swap seeds, tips, recipes and plants. We will be putting on regular expert guest speakers and visits to kitchen gardens. The idea is not ‘gardening nightschool’, but to have fun!’

For more information see

or contact Wendy at or 01258 817883.


PlanLoCaL workshops in July

Have booked your space at the next PlanLoCaL community energy event?

Are you involved with a community group through work or in a voluntary capacity which would benefit from resources and guidance on low carbon projects?

The four events in Birmingham, Manchester, London and Bristol will explore community approaches to energy efficiency and the Green Deal, showcasing the brand new PlanLoCaL toolkit and featuring some excellent guest speakers. You can sign up via the links below.

The different events will feature speakers from DECC, Green Deal Advice Midlands Ltd, Carbon Co-op, Energise Barnet, Bristol Green Doors, Birmingham Social Enterprise Energy Network, Co-operatives UK Community Shares Unit, as well as more to be confirmed!

And workshop sessions will include: Exploring roles in Green Deal; Understanding your area; Identifying funding; Managing Risk; Writing a community engagement strategy; Planning permissions; Housing Assessment Tool; Energy efficiency game.

We are able to offer travel bursaries to community group volunteers, and all attendees will get a free copy of the new PlanLoCaL pack. But sign up soon as places are filling up quickly!

Friday 5 July | The Priory Rooms, Birmingham |

Saturday 6 July | Bridge 5 Mill, Manchester |

Friday 12 July | Roots and Shoots, London |

Saturday 13 July | Create Centre, Bristol |

Please feel free to pass these details on to your contacts. There’s more information in the attached flyer.

Best wishes

CSE Communities team

Public meeting in Dorchester this Friday on this with Brian May in attendance!

Event: 24 May 2013 – 7:00pm – 9:00pm in Dorchester, Dorset

The meeting is open to the public and is organised by the Team Badger Coalition which includes the RSPCA, Humane Society and the League against cruel sports. Speakers include Dr Brian May, Gavin Grant – Chief Executive of the RSPCA, Mark Jones – Managing Director of the Humane Society, and Steven Jones, a retired dairy farmer.  

Take a Stand for Badgers on June 1st


Response from Julie 18th May 2013:

Obviously this is close to my heart having lost two pet cows as inconclusive and being told my cows will contract Tb from wildlife at some point although we try to keep badgers out of winter areas it is not easy from fields (we are a closed herd) .there seems to be loads of contradictory evidence from both sides. I believe the badgers are getting Fair amount of publicity but saving cows is getting none although thousands are already slaughtered.

Most farmers i know want a Vaccination for their cows to protect them and I believe this is what should be pushed. The government will not push Europe to accept Diva test following vaccination animal rights have got it wrong by just concentrating on the cull the situation is so much worse farmers are losing livelihood in southwest but also are really struggling emotionally losing their livestock, cows often killed unnecessarily. I really hope transition think about the many people effected by the loss they already experience in this area not just wildlife which we know is important but at what cost



Following a visit to NGPS’s first exhibition in the Purbecks a chance conversation has resulted in us having a brand new solar display unit installed.

I was happily content to have solar installed 8 years ago and even when the Government only offerred me 3p FITT pleased to be producing solar energy and gaining some small returns frrom SSE.

It came as quite a surprise when I was advised to take down the old and have a new array put in.

Our new system is far more efficient, we have a new tiled roof and lots of the latest technology added as a standard feature.

For example checkout ( )

The speed, efficiency and the way the project was completed fills me with admiration for the NGPS team and from a relatively small investment I can expect a payback within 5/6 years at the current Fitts level and even more importantly help in using the energy we create for my own purposes.


This new innovation will reduce our energy bills overtime and already we can tell the difference in the amount of hot water we now have.

Why not also take a look in at their next Exhibition Roadshow at Ringwood on the 30th May 10am until 8pm

Full details about other venues at

Vince Adams

A-bun-dance and sub-tropical greenhouse in Chao Sobral Portugal 2013


Would you like to learn how to create your food forest ?

Yes, we humans are able to learn how to design for a high level abundance and diversity of food never seen in wild settings.

The long road to

Experience is my best teacher – Working from patterns to details.

In Chão Sobral, October is a month full of fruits as you can observe here:

Below, is about a small piece of land, on a rocky ridge crest, that we can flood irrigate, and includes the following plants

Extreme stacking

already planted – some old, some young trees:

  • olives
  • tangerines 2 kinds
  • lemon
  • apple 3 kinds
  • mulberry 2 kinds
  • peach (already canopy – shade)
  • holly tree
  • walnut
  • hazel nut
  • kiwi vines
  • grape vines
  • goji berry
  • black currants
  • rasberry
  • blue berry – mirtiles
  • thornless black berry
  • kaki
  • fig
  • orange trees 2 – in pots
  • feijoa – in pot
  • elder berry
  • lime – linden
  • magnolia
  • camelia japonica
  • albizia lophanta
  • cassia corymbosa
  • many flowers!

it’s going to be a dance – growing together!

Inside this plot, in the policarbonate panel – polytunnel green house, another dance-party:

already planted

  • grafted and non grafted avocado
  • grafted cherimoya anona
  • lemon
  • strawberry guava
  • kumquat – a dwarf citrus
  • pepino dulce
  • lemon grass
  • verbena
  • aloe
  • passion fruit
  • physalis
  • Yacóns: Smallanthus sonchifolius, Syn.: Polymnia edulis, P.sonchifolia (
  • jerusalem artichoke
  • tamarillo – brazil tomatoe – tree tomato

So beside these perenial plants we can also add the normal annual crops – we just need to find the edge!

– current / May 2013, yields from this green house: cabbage, potatoe, new zealand spinach, kumquat, lemons.

– it also functions as a plant nursery

Up dates from the evolution of these living systems will be at:

Looking forward to hear from you and your abun-dance experience!


João Gonçalves

“Permacultura (Cultura Permanente) é um sistema ético de design ecológico.”

(+351) 96 96 80 009

Chão Sobral – Oliveira do Hospital – Serra do Açor


Permacultura na Serra do Açor – Portugal

“Comida que nunca acaba” / Permacultura no Malawi

Centro de Ecologia Integral


Response from Wendy of Dorset:

Oh for the climate to grow that list of fruit! Although, apart from the citrus and avocado, I do grow most of them, with over 40 species of fruit in the orchard, greenhouse and polytunnel – despite the weather! I’m working on the citrus, but avocados are a bigger challenge in Dorset.

Slow Food Blitz Bee Action