Our membership of the Royal Horticultural Society entitles us to one free group visit a year to one of their gardens. This year we are organising a visit to RHS Wisley, Surrey.
Wisley is the historic home of the Royal Horticultural Society and houses one of the largest plant collections in the world. They have a series of gardens including a showcase vegetable garden, as well as The Glasshouse and a cafe/restaurant.
We need to enter as a group, but once inside can split up into smaller groups.
We will organise car sharing for the journey – if you have a car and can take passengers please let the committee know. Similarly, if you would like to go and need a lift, let the committee know.
Our favourite event of the year is our Open Day when we welcome the local community to join us for a day of food, music and entertainment as well as an opportunity to enjoy our allotment site. Our Open day on Sunday 19th May was no exception.
We would like to say huge ‘Thank You’ to everybody who made the day so special, either by visiting, preparing the site in advance, helping with a stall, cooking or serving food, performing or helping to pack away at the end.
Below are a selection of pictures showing some of the highlights of the day.
The Wildlife Garden
This is our new bug hotel which we are building with the community. We invited visitors to the wildlife garden to fill the stacked pallets with material to provide nooks and crannies for bugs to live. We will put a roof on it to make sure it provides a waterproof home for a wide range of bugs.
People enjoyed watching the pond as well as pond dipping. The pond is teaming with life – we found several newts (including the one shown below), a dragonfly larvae (below), tiny red bloodworms, two types of snails, caddisfly larvae and a host of other invetebrates.
Our plant stall was back selling vegetable and flowers plants as well as rhubarb. We also had a bee demonstration stall that sold products from beekeeping as well as bee jewellery. The Soap and Dandelion coffee making stalls was also very popular.
We’d like to say a special thank you to Beckenham Choir (above) and Churchfields Choir (below) who performed at the Open Day.
We had a range of activities for our younger visitors including bubbles to chase, a magic show, cake decorating, hook a duck, bouncy castle, no tears tombola, the Woodcraft Folk did craft activities, as well as pond dipping and helping with the bug hotel.
Clubhouse Cafe & BBQ
As well as enjoying the homemade cakes there was an exhibition by the Beckenham Photographic Society that included photographs taken on site, such as the amazing sequence showing a dragonfly emerging.
We also had two BBQs on the go for the day with our fabulous chefs cooking hundreds of burgers and sausages.
Thank you to everybody who contributed to the day – it was a real team effort and a lovely community day.