Collective Newsletter #5: Updates from the field and beyond: our story so far

Wow, what a roller coaster ride we’ve embarked on together! We hope you have enjoyed the discussions and decision making on Loomio so far. In case you couldn’t keep up with it all here is a quick summary of what’s been happening at Weston Farm...

 

Our story so far

We collectively decided on two things:

  1. We are taking an experimental approach and will plant companion crops

  2. We will plant spelt with clover

After John realised that his usual spelt supplier does not have any summer spelt and there does not seem to be any around in the whole of her majesty’s United Kingdom, we started a summer spelt hunt on the European continent, exploring various contacts from Danish government officials to German farmers forums. Phew, it was nerve wracking!

We were about to give up and Grahame was calling for a new vote, when we located some Scandinavian organic summer spelt for sale at a farm in East Germany. We bought 2 tons of the spelt and managed to find someone to ship it here. But what we bought was organic spelt, direct from harvest, so John first had to clean, sieve and prepare it for sowing.

 

The seeds were drilled and rolled in - squashing a few slugs-  on Holy Saturday. And because everyone was hungover on Sunday, no one came up to the farm to help with the Morris dance to spur germination. So John did a solitary jig on our behalf- can we have some photographic evidence John :-) ?

 

With a lack of rain and cold temperatures now everything is slow on the farm, but John is drafting up a few options in regards to how much fertiliser and fungicide to use, so there will be another vote happening soon.

Stay tuned on the main thread on Loomio!

 

What’s next?

Here’s an overview of the events we have planned so far for the rest of the year. We will send new updates if anything else comes up.

Co-investor Veronica has invited us all to this fabulous event in May, come join!

  • June 8th:  Informal Drinks @Bootstrap Yard in Dalston, 7pm

Come join us for a cold beer from 40 feet brewery at Dalston Bootstrap Yard and say hi to our friends at the Dusty Knuckle Bakery! Email us back to RSVP please.

The Cherrys invite you to join the no-till show and conference they organise on their farm each year.

  • July 22nd & 23rd: Camping Weekend @Weston Farm

Would anyone like to get involved with organising this? Do get in touch!

The #OurField team are joining forces with bakers to spread grainy love at our favourite Summer festival Shambala for some farming-grain-bread chats, come join!

  • October 7th & 8th Harvest Festival @Weston Farm

A celebration of all our efforts at Weston Farm. Save the date, this can’t be missed!

As always, if you or your community are organising an event that might be of interest to the #OurField collective and wider community, please get in touch and we will include it in our newsletter!

 

In other news...

  • Read more about local grain economies to start thinking what we will do with our yields on Indie Farmer here.

  • Organising team member and co-investor Abby Rose’s podcast Farmerama is nominated for the British Podcast Awards, whoohoo! Show your support here.

  • Co-investor Tessa Tricks has reported on the #OurField project for the Sustainable Food Trust. Check out her thoughts on crop-sharing here.

  • Abby Rose wrote about her eye-opening, emotional and practical journey with the project 'Field of wheat' which inspired the motivation behind starting #OurField. Read more on Agricology here.

 

We hope to see many of you at the Skip Garden in May!

Grainy love from your #OurField team 🌾

Abby Rose, Carolin, Phoebe, Annie and Abi Aspen

 

Carolin Goethel