Tag Archives: Edinburgh

Please Help Save Our Beautiful Hills From Development

One of the main attractions of moving to the hamlet of Nine Mile Burn was it’s peaceful location at the quieter end of The Pentland Hills Regional Park. We’re lucky to be part of a wonderful small community in an area of historical importance (we live along an old Roman Road) and undisputed natural beauty that is much enjoyed by ourselves and regular visitors and hill walkers seeking the tranquility that is on offer just on the outskirts of Edinburgh. Continue reading Please Help Save Our Beautiful Hills From Development

The New Food Writing: an evening with Caroline Eden & Louise Gray

Louise has become a friend of mine this past year, since attending her book launch of The Ethical Carnivore and sharing a weekend of processing geese for Christmas on a small farm in Angus – I’m very much looking forward to this event on Wednesday. Thought it might also be of interest to other foodie writer with a concern for the environment and ethical production and consumption issues…  Continue reading The New Food Writing: an evening with Caroline Eden & Louise Gray

Food Beyond The Plate – Foraging and Foodie Events

 

One of my Gastronomy lecturers is working on a collaborative project between food educators, foragers, chefs, artists and producers in the Edinburgh area.

They are offering workshops and experiences from July 2017 which explore the world of food in its broadest sense in the beautiful Newton Walled Gardens at Millerhill just outside Edinburgh.

You can find out more about the project on their Facebook page here

Upcoming events include Wild Crafts: beautiful botanicals with forager and herbal medicine specialist Anna Canning , Killing Cooking, Writing – a workshop with Ethical Carnivore author Louise Gray and How and Why to Eat The Wild – explore the possibilities of using wild foods with Rupert Waites of Buck and Birch, wild-chef and co-creator of Aelder Elixir – all of which sound fantastic for those with a love of the great outdoors, food and cooking, self provisioning and home crafts.

You can find more details on their upcoming events here

Guess I may well see some of you at one of these!

Power of Food Festival – Events Programme – 17th-18th June

The full programme of events has now been launched, click on the image below to see what’s in store for this year’s festival…

The Power of Food Festival, a great celebration of community food growing, will be held in 29 gardens across Edinburgh on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 June.

2017 marks the third edition of the Festival and showcases community food growing as a way to promote greater societal well-being and environmental sustainability. The Power of Food Festival provides a unique opportunity to (re)discover the city and take the pulse of its vibrant and varied neighbourhoods.

There is a wide range of free entertainment for children and adults, including: music and singing, edible plants walk, yoga, talks & stalls about the impact of our food choices, bioblitz, bug hunt, dance performance, food-inspired poetry-making workshop, a drystone dyking course, as well as sharing in the pleasure of eating together.

Entry to the gardens and all Festival activities are free (food may be offered on a ‘pay as you feel’ basis), and all are welcome to attend.

There is a short film about the Festival which offers an insight into what the Festival is all about. You can watch it here.

The detailed programme includes maps for different parts of the city to help visitors plan their weekend’s exploration, sustainable travel information, and a schedule of timed events. The full programme is available here.

Background

The story of The Power of Food Festival itself is a simple one. With so many inspiring food gardens springing up around the city, transforming individual lives and communities, the Festival seeks to highlight community food growing as a powerful force for social change – connecting people, building trust, doing something together that’s greater than the sum of the parts. It aims to raise awareness of the environmental and social impact of our everyday food choices. It centres around a joyful garden gate open weekend and offer an exciting programme of free events and activities at local venues. Hosted by community food gardens, the Festival is the opportunity to be inspired by positive stories of collective action. Unlike traditional food festivals, this event gives the public the chance to go on location and experience how food is grown by local residents in their own neighbourhoods.

The Festival is entirely volunteer-run and operates without any grant funding. It seeks to harness the great human potential of our city and draws on people’s energy, enthusiasm and talents. The Power of Food Festival team would like to thank all those who are working hard to make the gardens and this Festival grow from strength to strength. It is a heart-warming sign of the community empowerment the Festival aims to celebrate.

A Visit to Gardening Scotland 2017

Despite being a little underwhelmed with the show last year, we got some discounted tickets and headed over to Ingliston for a quiet mooch about.

We like to go on the Sunday as they break the display stands down at 4pm and you can get some great bargains.

The weather was great, not what was expected but we were feeling a little jaded from a late night so just had a quiet mooch about which was very pleasant and not too taxing. 

As usual there were lots of inspirational gems to be seen and we could’ve spent a small fortune. We were very restrained though and just came back with some plant ties and labels, a large rosemary in a lovely pot (for £5!!), a meconopsis and a couple of pretty chinensis (my love of orange and yellow extends to plants).

Here are some more pictures…

Power of Food Festival – 17th-18th June

This is a fantastic two-day festival that allows people the chance to visit different food-growing gardens in and around Edinburgh – with almost 30 gardens throwing open their doors this year – there’s bound to be something for everyone.

I can’t recommend the Lost Garden of Penicuik enough if you fancy a wee trip out of town. I had a tour there recently and it’s a wonderful place with an interesting history and some innovative ways of managing their land to grow food.

For more information, see below…

The summer solstice marks a special date in Edinburgh’s festival calendar. A time of growth and renewal, it has been chosen to showcase and celebrate the incredible richness of the city’s community food gardens. What started as an experiment in 2015 is now growing into its third edition on 17th-18th June 2017.

29 gardens, including over a dozen that are new to the Festival, are gearing up for a joyful weekend of fun and inspiration, hopefully in the sun!

The 2017 programme will invite visitors on a city-wide exploration. From the heart of the city centre all the way to the outer edges, the Festival demonstrates the tremendous diversity of Edinburgh’s food-growing community gardens and the fantastic people who keep them alive. Many of these community food gardens are little gems hidden away in neighbourhoods seldom the focus of city-wide festivals and all have a unique story to share. This year’s programme will include a 17th century garden in the heart of the Old Town, an urban croft in Leith and an old farm steading in the Pentlands, as well as a food garden on the grounds of a GP practice, to name but a few.

Over the two days, the gardens will open their gates to the public and stage a range of free activities for all ages and interests, from music and storytelling, apple pressing and bioblitz, to food growing and food tasting!

The Power of Food Festival has a partnership with Sustrans which will offer guided bike tours of the gardens.

The Festival’s full programme will be available in May.

A GROWING COMMUNITY

The story of The Power of Food Festival itself is a simple one. With so many inspiring food gardens springing up around the city, transforming individual lives and communities, the Festival seeks to highlight community food growing as a powerful force for social change – connecting people, building trust, doing something together that’s greater than the sum of the parts. It aims to raise awareness of the environmental and social impact of our everyday food choices. It centres around a joyful garden gate open weekend and offer an exciting programme of free events and activities at local venues. Hosted by community food gardens, the Festival is the opportunity to be inspired by positive stories of collective action. Unlike traditional food festivals, this event gives the public the chance to go on location and experience how food is grown by local residents in their own neighbourhoods.

The Festival is entirely volunteer-run and operates without any grant funding. It seeks to harness the great human potential of our city and draws on people’s energy, enthusiasm and talents. The Power of Food Festival team would like to thank all those who are working hard to make the gardens and this Festival grow from strength to strength. It is a heart-warming sign of the community empowerment the Festival aims to celebrate.

If you haven’t already, you too can play an active part in the Festival. We welcome offers of in-kind help, partnership and sponsorships. Or you can simply give us your support:

For more information, please get in touch with the Festival team:  poweroffoodfestival [@] outlook.com

Newhall Estate – Garden Open Days

The walled garden at Newhall is just lovely – I had serious veggie plot envy last time I was there, so I’m excited to see that it’s open every Wednesday between 2pm and 4.30pm until 27th July as part of Scotland’s Garden Scheme.

Entry £4 (goes to charity). Tea and coffee will be on offer.

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The History of The Garden

The Walled Garden was built about 1792 by Robert Brown. Originally such gardens were merely enclosed places in which to grow produce for the kitchen and flowers for the house, but they quickly evolved as places also for quiet perambulation in summer, and in winter to view the exotic fruit growing in the heat of the Glasshouses. The Walled Garden at Newhall has some remarkable features surviving from its earliest years, a heated Melon Pit, a beautifully built tunnel was discovered recently linking the nearby burn to the greenhouse for water supply.

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In the centre of the Garden is a statue of Adam, the first gardener, (made of Coadestone) ready to ‘delve’. You may also find – at the top of the Garden – the composite sundial, a round early 18th century table dial with a scrolled stone gnomon (or pointer) on what is probably a late 17th century pedestal of four figures of the seasons. The pedestal has been attributed to James Gifford of West Linton, a local sculptor and pre-dates the garden as it is thought to be from 1708.

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The cloverleafed pierced stones and another dated 1796 that you might find near the statue of Adam were brought here from one of Robert Brown’s outlying properties.

The twin busts of Pan and his mother on the South Gatepiers are probably early 18th century.They used to adorn the old entrance to Newhall House.

These are thought to have been cut by an Italian sent for and employed by the Duke of Hamilton and originally to have been on the gateposts between two Pigeon Houses that were once at the front of the house.

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Under the trees to the right of the South Gatepiers can be seen stones that originally formed part of a stone newel or spiral staircase from the old tower-house that still forms the core of Newhall House today. They were removed during the early 19th century extensions and alterations to the house.

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Newhall Estate is just off the A702 between Penicuik and Carlops.

Newhall House, Carlops, Penicuik EH26 9LY

Gardening Scotland 2016

Was I the only one who was disappointed with this year’s Gardening Scotland Show? Not at all by the sounds of it.

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We were so excited about going, it was amazing last year, but it turned out to be a little bit of a let-down. The show gardens weren’t that ‘showy’ (or that many either) and both the craft tent and the main indoor hall also seemed to be lacking in both the number of stalls and their ‘substance’ in comparison to before.

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There were still some lovely stalls in the main hall and we thoroughly enjoyed listening to Hamish from the Secret Herb Garden talk about weeds/medicines, and the weather was perfect.

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So although we had a lovely afternoon with our friends  and we did still all come home with armfuls of purchases (and some absolute steals from when the stands were being broken down) I think I’ll have to demote it back below the Royal Highland Show which is coming up in the next couple of weeks.

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Next year we’re going to try Chelsea instead. Maybe the shows are just too close together and people are choosing Chelsea over Gardening Scotland….

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These are a few purchases, we haven’t given up on the Bonsai and have even bought a couple of new ones too! Predictably a succulent and cactus also found their way home.

 

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Crassula Pelucida Marginalis

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Jade Bonsai (Money Tree)
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Japanese Holly Bonsai