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Small scale food growing competition

Calling all gardenless gardeners and food lovers!

Would you like to see hanging baskets dripping with strawberries, herbs and salad leaves filling windowsills, boat roofs covered with courgettes, beans growing up balconies and pots of potatoes on every pavement. If the answer is yes!, then why not enter Hebden Bridge’s  (and surrounding areas) first ever small scale food growing competition? Its being launched this week and is free to enter.

“How Does your Garden Grow?” is aimed at those of you who have a small garden or no garden at all. “There is a real desire in this area to grow food, yet with few available allotments, many feel it is not possible” says Kath Baker of the Calder Food Hub, “We want the competition to show people that it is feasible to grow food in the spaces that we do have available to us, like pavements, yards and windowsills, that its fun to do and looks great.”

Everyone taking part in the competition will be given the opportunity to showcase their garden in the Arts Festival’s Open Gardens Trail.

“I’m really excited that the open gardens will be food focused and representative of the kind of gardens most of us have around here” says Kath. The competition will end on Sunday 11th July with a prize-giving and celebration feast, where everyone who has taken part will be rewarded.

The Competition is being run by the Calder Food Hub, a local not for profit organization, whose aim is to promote the production and consumption of local foods in the Calder Valley. The Hub is hoping to gather enough information from people’s experiences during the competition to create a vibrant ‘how to guide’ on ‘food growing in small spaces’ in Calderdale. All entrants will be asked to take ‘before’, ‘during’ and ‘after’ photos of their garden and keep a record of its progress.

Calder Food Hub is also involved in setting up an edible courtyard garden in Hebden Bridge Library. “Everyone is welcome join in”, says Kath, “we will also be on hand to share advice and knowledge”. Library garden sessions are on Thursdays 10am- 12pm. There is also a ‘How Does your garden grow?’ resource pack in the library, with free information sheets on many aspects of small scale growing. Another CFH event planned to help aspiring gardeners is ‘Seedy Saturday’, a seed and plant swap day, happening at the Hope St Baptist Church, Saturday 24th April, 12-4.

Entry forms are available in Hebden Bridge library, The ATC and online at www.hebdenbridgetransitiontown.org.uk. All entries must be submitted by 21st May 2010. Call CFH on 01422 846540 for more information.

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