Making Change in How We Live, Where We Live, in Light of Climate Change (FOR TWELVE YEARS!)

Friday, 20 December 2013

The shortest day: looking forward in the Garden

This weekend it's the winter solstice.
From now on the days start to get longer - slowly at first, just seconds per day. Yes it's still winter, and the coldest weather is still to come - but for gardeners this is an exciting time!
Over the next few weeks, come along to the Tooting Community Garden and you can feel that things are alive and moving outdoors.

The winter wheat is
coming up well
 Rocket and mustard
leaves picked today

Gardening helps you learn to look forwards (a New Year's resolution?).
This week we planted the Stella dessert cherry that Gatton School has presented to the Community Garden - there'll be plenty of blossom and fruit to enjoy in the future.

We'll be open on Sundays 11-1 over the holidays.
Check on the Community Garden's Facebook page for any updates, and we look forward to seeing you!

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Cycling & Better, Safer Streets

I was reminded in Amsterdam recently, what a vast difference there is between cycling in the Dutch capital and cycling in London.
In central Amsterdam, bicycles and feet seem the primary mode of transport followed by trams. Far fewer cars, less pollution, a more pleasant environment and a slimmer looking population from this brief survey. There are many segregated lanes for bicycles, separate bike traffic signals, a generally friendly mixing of bikes and pedestrians and no helmets, not one, in sight.  Cycling is a pleasure not an ordeal.

Could London ever become this civilised?  Or must every journey involve a running of the gauntlet, sharing tiny spaces with huge vehicles, oblivious, aggressive or on the phone drivers coccooned in their metal boxes, cycle lanes that go nowhere etc?  As a daily cyclist, I can confirm it's a jungle out there, even on the roads of Tooting and Balham which I use a lot.  You have to keep your wits about you to stay safe.  If only here was as cool and bike/people friendly as Amsterdam!

So what is going on in our local area?  Campaigner Jon Irwin has several petitions running on his traffik in tooting blog looking for support for trial changes to road layouts in Tooting and wider Wandsworth, and he'd welcome your support - all petitions here.  One idea I particularly like is making a section of the A24 between Tooting Bec and Balham a French style boulevard with segregation for cyclists and pedestrians.  "Balham Boulevard" apparently has some chance of success with interest from Council Transport lead Russell King and even a name check from Boris!  Jon adds: "The campaigns I've been running ... have been incredibly well received. Do get in touch if you'd like to help out, I can only do this with local support". Email Jon here

Meanwhile 20's Plenty looks to implement a 20mph speed limit where people live.  I recently petitioned a Council meeting requesting this in my street.  Why not do the same for yours?  Already over 12m people live in local authority areas which are adopting this policy - why not round here too?  Despite Wandsworth Council never seeming keen on actually DOING anything in this area (better at talking), it's up to us as individuals to keep applying pressure.  There is an election next year ... politicians do seem to be interested in those.  DT

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Update 4 - Gatton School Garden Sessions

Gatton School's Year Six classes have had two more amazing sessions, on the 3rd and 10th December. While the rainwater catchment in the Tooting Community Garden - 'The Build' - has been growing fast, children have been trying out some of the skills involved.

The pictures can tell the story:
Year Six were practicing cutting timber joints on 3rd December, to copy how the roof supports are fitted together:

Four timbers complete with two lap joints each
On December 10th they made a pop-up roof with hand-held gutters to show how to collect and store rainwater from a roof. It worked!

The pop-up roof takes shape

No problem! From watering can to storage without any spills

On both days, we explored how teamworking makes a better and stronger construction.
As of today the roof is up, and next week sees the completion of the Build - with several linked projects planned for 2014.

Sorting garlic before planting
Year One classes have continued to visit:
Garden activities can be solo and
reflective, or social and active!
Can maple seeds fly? Yes!


Thursday, 12 December 2013

TTT Dec Meet & Christmas Celebration

TTT has one more meeting this year and it'll be quite a short one from 7 to 7.30pm at the Antelope in Mitcham Rd on Tuesday 17th Dec. Happily this meet will also double up as a Christmas celebration from 7.30 onwards that could end anywhere in the beloved environs of SW17.  It's been a busy year with so many different contributions from so many people in a wide variety of different areas.  Thanks everyone for helping TTT go from strength to strength.  Do come along and celebrate, join us for a drink and a chat, followed by an optional sampling of any of the neighbourhood's culinary delights.  We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Latest monthly TTT email on 4th December '13

You can read today's monthly email to subscribers by clicking here.
Please email us on if you would like to be added to the circulation list.
We hope to see you at a meeting or event soon!

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Update 3 - Gatton School Garden Sessions

During this week's session, the Year Six children caught up with the progress achieved by the previous school groups: raising the six main uprights for the rainwater catchment build, having set the posts in concrete (see earlier Updates below in this blog).

Spot the socket wrench
What was the next job?
Making the roof trusses to support the roof itself. four small groups, the Year Six children designed sets of models of the trusses, complete with an angled pitch to ensure rain-water runoff. The children measured lengths of timber, drilled them to fit their designs, fixed them with bolts or screws, and took them back to school to experiment further: co-operating to use brand new skills.
We made these models! The real thing is behind us.
And what did Year One do?
They prepared the ground, marked out rows, and planted some jerusalem artichokes: plants which will grow much taller than they are next spring and summer.
Covering the tubers with earth - job well done!
Next stage in the Year Six Build project? Three more sessions to go: building the trusses..and then roofing, then the guttering and water butts. Look out for the next Update!

Community Responses to the Energy Crisis

We hosted this meeting with the Furzedown Low Carbon Zone on Wednesday 27th November.

Giles from gave an interactive talk sponsored by the Citizens' Advice Bureau.
He focused on understanding our own energy supply bills, on the grants and support schemes currently available, and who is eligible, on the energy efficiency challenges in Furzedown's housing stock, and on being aware of the energy consumption of many household items - all in a very practical 45 minutes.
Of course we still had questions - and Giles directed us to many places to find out much more detail.

Secondly, we briefly outlined the potential for a community energy generation scheme, and agreed to meet again in January 2014 to discuss this in more depth.
We realised we are 'surrounded' by local energy generation experiments and potential good advice - with schemes developed or en route in Brixton, Streatham, Kingston, and Wandsworth.

Andy, Headteacher at Eardley School, described the final stages of the installation at half term of £10,000 worth of energy efficiency measures in the school. The funds for these steps came via the FLCZ project which ran locally earlier in 2014, where local college students engaged with aspects of sustainability within their courses.
(Have a look at our project video here).

To get involved or learn more, please contact Graham Petersen by email - we look forward to being in touch.
And thanks to Naked Loaf for making the delicious snacks in the same few days that they were painting floors and signs ready to open their new bakery and deli in Moyser Road.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

BATCA Heroes Award for Gatton School & Tooting Community Garden

The Gatton School Community Garden project won a team award at the BATCA Community Heroes event held this evening at Jasmin's nightclub in Tooting. Congratulations to nominees Chuck and Deputy Head Hoosen Randaree pictured above with Head Teacher Rifat Batool and their awards. 
Many thanks to everyone involved, especially the children!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Late November: Six 'new beginnings'

Even though the year is moving into winter, there's six 'new beginnings' to share with you below.
We hope to see you at these events - all welcome to come along and maybe try something new..

1 On Tuesday 26th November we are starting to plan for the 2014 Tooting Foodival.
Do join us and suggest some new ideas, or become a new participant for next year.
We're meeting at The Selkirk, 60 Selkirk Rd, Tooting Broadway from 1900 to 2100 (details on Events Calendar opposite).

2 On Wednesday 27th November there is a SMArT Meet and Make workshop at Sprout in Moyser Road, Furzedown from 1830 to 2030. All welcome (details in the Events Calendar). The meeting will also start to look forward to the Christmas making and craft event on December 7th at Mushkil Aasaan - details to follow.

3 Also on Wednesday 27th November, along with the Furzedown Low Carbon Zone, we are co-hosting 'Community Responses to the Energy Crisis' at the Furzedown project from 1930. The meeting will help participants make sense of saving energy and reducing costs now, and we will start to explore developing a local renewable energy project.  Plus refreshments from Naked Loaf...please come along. See the complete flyer here

4 Naked Loaf made creative use of the bread flour we grew in the Tooting Community Garden this summer to make sourdough starter for dozens of delicious loaves at the Tooting Foodival in September. The new beginning for Naked Loaf is the exciting opening of their new organic bakery and deli at 70 Moyser Road, Furzedown, SW16 6SQ. They are finishing the decorating now and expecting to be fully open from Thursday 28th November, all day from 8:00 am. Best go and visit soon and try some of the great produce!

5 The 'Big Build' with Gatton School in the Community Garden is beginning to take shape, building on the children's enthusiasm and energy.
There'll be a celebration at the end of term to mark the rainwater catchment completion.

6 Not quite a sign of spring, but the broad beans planted a few weeks ago are beginning to show through - a very encouraging sight as the weather turns colder.
Do come and join us in the Community Garden every Sunday from 1100-1300.

For more info on any of these 'new beginnings', contact us on email at

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Update 2: Gatton School Garden Sessions

This week's garden sessions with Gatton School saw two very different events.  60 Year 1 children went on a "Bear Hunt" set out by their teachers around the site, while a more regular group of 15 Year 6 children helped clear up autumn leaves, tidy up some beds for compost and continued with the Big Build rain water harvester project.  The eight upright posts for the Big Build structure have now been set in concrete, some of it mixed by the students.  Thanks to all this week's volunteers who helped out with these activities.
A bear is discovered
Concrete mixing and post setting

Monday, 18 November 2013

Zero Carbon for The Shadow Cabinet

TTT likes to mix the global with the local where possible and in the last week, working with the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT), we have sent a copy of CAT's Zero Carbon Britain report, via our helpful local MP Sadiq Khan, to every member of the shadow cabinet.  The parcels were tied up with colourful Tooting ribbon that Lucy picked up at Reshma's saree shop, which closed last month after 39 years of trading at Tooting Bec.
The report draws on CAT's 40 years of experience to offer technically viable scenarios for a future with zero carbon while also creating employment, increasing wellbeing and having a positive impact on the economy.

We are grateful to CAT and Sadiq for enabling us to disseminate these important ideas to potential future policy makers.  Follow the links above to read more about CAT and the report.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Update 1: the Big Build with Gatton School in the Community Garden

One of the outdoor learning projects we are carrying out with Gatton School's Year Six class is helping to build our combined rainwater catchment, shelter, suntrap, & garden bower in the Community Garden, between now and Christmas.
Every week we'll make progress, and share it here.
Last week we cleared the site and dug the post holes.
Yesterday the children raised the first upright roof support.
The children mixed cement and gravel to make concrete - and mixed it again and again in several piles.
Cement has a high carbon footprint: we are using as little as we can. Almost all the timber we need is recycled from materials found on site. We'll be buying new fixings, and balancing that with mixing the concrete by hand - and saving water in the future.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

New TTT email of news and activities Nov 6th 13

Our latest email has been sent out to subscribers - we hope it's an enjoyable read (yes there is a lot there!). If you don't receive it and would like to read a copy, please click here. 
Helena and Poppy: you wrote in and asked to be added to the list. I wrote back to you on 2 December, and now I have deleted your emails by mistake - sorry - could you write in again!
If you would like to be sent your very own in future, do email us on
For the diary: we've made a date correction: the SMArT Christmas making event is on 7th December, at Mushkil Aasaan - not the 11th. Details to follow, and all welcome!

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Outdoor Learning with Gatton School in the Community Garden in Nov & Dec 2013

Gatton School, located near Tooting Broadway, have been coming to the Community Garden every week since March as part of their Outdoor Learning programme. At the moment we have Year One and Year Six staff and children taking part, alongside TTT volunteers.
Between now and the end of term in December, we are running two projects: the Big Build, and Bug Hotels (we seem to be in a construction frame of mind, good for these winter weeks).
The plan takes shape

Monday, 4 November 2013

Foodcycle Tooting

TTT Co-chair, Belinda Sosinowicz blogs her first experiences of the new Foodcycle venture starting this month in Tooting.

According to Foodcycle (2013) an estimated 400,000 tonnes of useable surplus food can be saved from UK supermarkets each year [1], or in other words, 400,000 tonnes of food is wasted by supermarkets that could otherwise be used.

To be doing something practical about this fits with our transition values which aim to tackle the big issues of climate change, peak oil, sustainability and scarce resources at a local level.  So recently I found myself being drawn into finding out how I could do more to address the issue of food wastage at my local level by joining Foodcycle.

Foodcycle is a UK charity that combines volunteers, surplus food and spare kitchen spaces to create tasty, nutritious meals for people at risk of food poverty and social isolation. They run 14 Hubs across the country: volunteer-powered community projects serving nutritious meals for people at risk. Working with community partners they provide communal meals in a warm and welcoming environment to older people, mental health service users, homeless people, low-income families, asylum seekers and refugees, and the long-term unemployed. Since May they have reclaimed over 74, 000kg of surplus food from food retailers.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Wildlife Gardening Forum: conference 21 Oct 13

TTT joined this bi-annual conference yesterday at the University Hospital, Coventry. The Wildflife Garden Forum is a voluntary UK-wide group including local and national projects and charities, researchers and academics, local authorities and government agencies. The Forum's intention is to share evidence and practice about the value of wildlife to gardening (and people) - and vice versa.
Yesterday's conference topic was 'Human Health and Wildlife Gardening' - please see the agenda here. An excellent range of speakers covered up-to-date research and personal experience of the links between our own health, wellbeing and happiness, and the health and biodiversity of wildlife.
It's a topic that's one of the keys to sustainability in Tooting.
A very exciting feature of the day was the focus on wildlife and nature's role across the NHS itself: including softer benefits such as the value of amenity and beauty, and harder evidence including faster recovery times. The University Hospital's Sustainable Development Manager gave us a tour of some of the easy-to-see elements of working with nature: the Hospital has created a wild space of reeds and young trees, next to a small river newly-populated by otters.

We have some good new contacts and ideas for taking forward these possibilities in Tooting - in a very different setting from a new-build hospital, but still with plenty of potential.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Work & Play Scrapstore in Tooting

I made a visit to the recently re-opened Work and Play Scrapstore in Blackshaw Rd this week. Running for over 20 years, the Scrapstore promotes the re-use of resources for environmental and community benefit and has a great collection of card, trimmings, fabric, plastics, carpet pieces and costumes.  The Scrapstore is a registered charity and provides resources to  schools, community groups and local artists - TTT's art making group SMArT visits regularly.  
Many thanks to Scrapstore volunteers Alison, Elizabeth, Lucy & Susan (all pictured) for showing me around.  The ethos of the Scrapstore seems a good fit with Transition ideas, and would be a great resource for future events.  

Meanwhile can anyone out there assist the Scrapstore with donations?  I was given a wishlist of desirable items so please do take any of the following down there on a Tuesday if you are able. dt

finer fabrics, felt, metal bottle tops, coloured card and paper, ribbon, laces, haberdashery, buttons, sewing tape, zips, elastic, knitting wool, plastic offcuts, plastic foam in sheets (2mm thick and up), wine corks, paper cups and plates.

Find out more at

Sunday, 13 October 2013

'After the Foodival' open meeting 15th October

TTT Open Meeting Tuesday 15th October - looking forward at TTT and local activities to build on the energy of the Foodival
Please come along: we have a regular TTT meeting in the upstairs room at The Selkirk in Selkirk Road, SW17 0ES on Tuesday at 7pm. All are welcome. We'll aim to tap in to the energy raised by, and have a bit of a debrief from, the Foodival - and hear about ongoing opportunities to get involved with existing projects.

Maybe you have a project idea you'd like to develop with others?  
If so why not come along and share with the group?

This meeting will have a structured section as well as time to chat. 
Please contact us if you are interested in presenting at this meeting: email us here

Our latest TTT mail out to subscribers was sent on the 11th October: click here to read a copy.

No TTT post is complete without a photo: so here are 2 from yesterdays' plant printing session for families at Gatton School's Big Draw and Cultural Day - thanks for asking us!

Meanwhile TTT was also at yesterday's St George's Hospital Community Open Day, where we dished out a lot of Community Garden seeds and had some good conversations. 

And how about the medical students dance society?  They should have been on the stage at Foodival - maybe next year, they were great!

Friday, 11 October 2013

Garden tea in the sun, and a visit in the rain

In the beautiful weather of Sunday 6th October we made tea at the Community Garden using our volcano kettle, trying out some of the wild plants Mark Watson suggested during the Tooting Foodival.

We sorted sunflower seeds for
drying and sowing next year
As well as enjoying cakes made with Garden brambles and local apples (thanks to the bakers Charlotte, Liz, and Gillian and Phoebe), we did some gardening too. We tidied the herb bed; planted elephant garlic; turned over weeds to dry in the sun. Thinking of future possibilities, we looked at samples of home-made paper incorporating garden plants - an idea for the garden-grown wheat straw that we have saved.

The visit in the rain was today, from Lina and Emil who are starting up a new project in Malmö, Sweden - a city farm to
be run as a local food production, green employment and sustainability hub - maybe the first in Sweden. We'll share more when it all gets going.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Foodival Video & Press

Some snippets of video from the Foodival plus last week's Wandsworth Guardian article.  Thanks again to everyone who made this such a fantastic event for the 6th year in a row. Can't wait for the next one!  Please tell us what you thought about Foodival 2013 HERE.  Thanks!

Sunday, 29 September 2013


What a fantastic weekend at Foodival with a great range of Tooting food cooked up by local restaurants and local cooks. Music and comedy added to the mix.  Thanks to everyone who helped out, set up, cleared up performed or ate.  More of a report soon but here are a few photos for starters.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

We grew all this!

Thanks to all the fabulous donors at Foodival earlier today! Can you recognise anyone below? Come and try local food cooked up by a wide variety of Tootingites on Sunday at Tooting Market as Foodival continues.

Here's an eyewitness report of today's action:

Saturday night and it’s ‘half time’ in the weekend Tooting Foodival.
In the first half:
  • We’ve had a brilliant day of walk-in fruit and vegetable donations today: thanks so much to everyone. These ranged from the traditional to the unexpected – all fabulous. From cabbages, kale, carrots and mighty Tooting-grown south Asian curry leaves, outdoor dessert grapes from Balham and Pink Fir Apple potatoes grown by Gatton School.
  • And much more….some grown in allotments; some in backyards; some in pots on a fifth floor balcony above Clapham South.
  • We enjoyed cooking and food preparation demonstrations: squash soup, and later penne pasta with beetroot from Volker; freshly-cooked dosas by Mango Palace; mackerel filleted before our eyes by Rick from Rick’s Restaurant and prepared raw or lightly cooked. All tasting fresh and delicious, and the recipes will be online soon.      
  • Visitors talked about healthy eating and diet with Morgan and her colleagues, did some drawing with Jeni, played our Community Garden Seed Game, signed up for the TTT email list – and chatted with each other about all their impressions of the day.  
  • Thanks to all today’s volunteers who helped create such a good atmosphere – and as ever to Mushkil Aasaan for supporting us by providing the premises.
Tonight and tomorrow morning it’s time for team talks and strategy.
  • The local restaurant chefs and home cooks involved are preparing their dishes – many of them using ingredients collected today.
  • The distinguished judges in the ‘Top Tooting Cook’ informal competition are studying the criteria for tomorrow’s analysis and taste-off.
All welcome tomorrow for the action-packed second half.
  • We move to the Sunday venue Tooting Market, starting from 12:00. Top Tooting Cook judging is between 1:00 and 1:30 (with the results announced at 3:00). Visitors can sample local produce prepared by all the participating restaurants: all the details in the blog post below.
  • There’ll be plenty of varied dishes, plus music and comedy, until the referee’s whistle closes the 6th Tooting Foodival at 4:00.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

6th Tooting Foodival, this weekend 28th and 29th September. All welcome!

Transition Town Tooting present this year’s two-day Tooting Foodival which promises to be even bigger and better than the previous 5.
Foodival is a celebration of local growing and cooking
- with a sustainable slant. 
This year we've made a comprehensive booklet which describes all the whys and whats of the Foodival - plus giving more background on the many partners. It's a proud record of community activity in Tooting.
Click here to read or download a copy of the Foodival booklet

In summary, the Tooting Foodival is a free event for all the family which
runs over two days:
- on Saturday 28th Sept from 11:00-4:00 at Mushkil Aasaan, 222 Upper Tooting Road, SW 17 7EW

- on Sunday 29th Sept from 12:00-4:00 in Tooting Market, 21-23 Tooting High Street SW17 0SN

(click here for a copy of the poster)
Cooking demonstrations on the Saturday at Mushkil Aasaan by: Mango Palace, Rick's Restaurant, Volker Nissen, and guidance on healthy eating from Morgan Serres

Local restaurants who are cooking for the Sunday feast in Tooting Market, using the local produce collected on Saturday, include: Al Mirage, Lahore Karahi, Mis Bar Mleczny, Naked Loaf, Pooja, Rick's Restaurant, Spice Village

Also on Sunday in the market there'll be music and comedy from: Jonathan Buckley, Vincent Burke, The Bara Bara Band, Sam Quinn. Plus local stands and more activities...many thanks to all!

Top Tooting Cook
There is still time to enter this fun and informal  competition.  
See the video clip on the right of this blog and please call Mal on 07980 611704 if you are interested to take part or find out more and see the current contenders here.
Would you like to see the 'competition rules'? Please click here. Entrants to the cooks' competition will take away fruit and veg on Saturday to cook overnight for Sunday’s event at Tooting Market from noon to 4pm, vying to be crowned Top Tooting Cook. 

We grew the wheat in the Tooting Community Garden
- then we ground it into flour, in Tooting
- then Naked Loaf used the flour in sourdough bread
- and it's soon to be eaten in the Tooting Foodival!
Why do we run the Foodival? This will whet your appetite: 
Foodival has always relied on donations of fruit and vegetables from local growers, and on support from local enterprises and home cooks who help create the Sunday feast.
Even in the busy city environs of Tooting, many people are growing fruit and vegetables in their back gardens or allotments, in pots or on windowsills. Foodival aims to show that locally grown food is good for you and can be as tasty as food imported from elsewhere, while of course having a much smaller carbon footprint. 
We will showcase dishes with close to zero food miles.
And there will be more to get involved with on both days from local enterprises, community groups and artists.
We'd like to say a big thank you to Wandsworth Borough Council for event support through the WBC Eco Fund.

Come along and enjoy the fun,
and we look forward to seeing you there!

Monday, 23 September 2013

Plenty in the Edible Garden

Plenty in the Edible Garden at the weekend including this rather sorry looking but unperturbed fox cub!  That garlic should be good for those striving to be crowned "Top Tooting Cook" at Foodival.  Still plenty of time to enter, though judges have already ruled that "Renard du jardin communautaire au gratin" will not be a permitted dish ...

Thursday, 19 September 2013

TTT's latest email update Sept 19th: local food and growing with Edible Gardens and the Foodival

The latest update is all about food and growing local - because we have the Edible Gardens Open Day on Sat 21st, and then the Foodival on Sept 28th & 29th. All welcome to both!

In case you don't receive our updates by email - you can read a copy by clicking here. Do mail us at if you would like to be on the distribution list.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Foodival 2013

Transition Town Tooting present our 6th Foodival on the 28th and 29th September 2013, and this year’s two day event promises to be even bigger and better than the previous 5! 

Foodival is a celebration of local growing and cooking with a sustainable slant.  Even in the busy city environs of Tooting, many people are growing vegetables and fruits in their back gardens, allotments, in pots or on windowsills.  Foodival aims to show that locally grown food can be just as tasty and good for you as food imported from elsewhere, while of course having a much smaller carbon footprint.  We will showcase dishes with close to zero food miles. 
Competing Cooks

Foodival has always relied on donations of fruit and vegetables from local growers and this year is no different.  On Saturday 28th Sept., at Mushkil Aasaan in Upper Tooting Road, volunteers will be accepting donations of any tasty Tooting fruit and veg from local people.  Local chefs and home cooks will then use all this lovely produce to create fabulous Tooting dishes while there will also be several professional cooking demonstrations using the donated food. 

Entrants to the cook’s competition (want to join the cook's here?) will take away fruit and veg to cook overnight for Sunday’s event at Tooting Market, vying to be crowned Top Tooting Cook. Local restaurants have also accepted the challenge to do likewise meaning that Sunday’s event will have a wide variety of Tooting food cooked up by Tooting people. All that’s needed is some Tooting Eaters to sample and enjoy the bounty! Sunday in the market will have live music, comedy, local stalls, games with prizes, the cook’s competition and a wide variety of food to sample.  

Foodival is a free event for all the family.  Come along and enjoy the fun, 

Meanwhile final plans will be discussed at a meeting at the Wheatsheaf tomorrow night (Tues 17th at 7pm).  To get involved in any way, please come along or contact Dave Mauger on  

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Edible Open Gardens Day in Community Garden, Saturday 21st Sept

'Edible Open Gardens Day' celebrates local gardening and food, and is taking place across dozens of London gardens.
Click here for Sustain's blog about the event.

We're pleased to be taking part, and the Tooting Community Garden will be open for an extra day from 11:00 until 3:00 on Saturday 21st September.
Please come and visit if you have not been before, or if you have been many times....
ALL WELCOME - and it's free.

Click here to read a copy of the flyer, which includes some of the plant prints that the Challenge volunteers made recently in the garden.

We'll be gardening, harvesting and sharing knowledge on local growing and cooking. There'll be plenty to do for adults, children and families.

Bring a picnic - that will make the sun come out!
And we'll be preparing for the 6th Tooting Foodival - details here - on the following weekend (28 & 29 Sept) - do come and give us a hand.

Have a look at recent activity in the garden on Facebook:

For any more information, email:
See you there!

Monday, 9 September 2013

Young people volunteering at the Tooting Community Garden, Sunday 8th Sept

Thanks a lot to the young people who came along to the garden for four and a half hours, in rain and sun (they are taking part in a Challenge Network programme).
What did we do?
The young people selected from a set of helpful jobs in the garden:

> They ground our bread wheat into flour
They used creative ways to thresh the wheat (to separate the seeds from the heads); and to winnow it (getting rid of the chaff mixed in with the wheat kernels). Then they milled it into flour. (Come to the Tooting Foodival and you can try Tooting Sourdough bread made with this flour by Furzedown's Naked Loaf)
Or: gently treading on the heads

Bashing the seed heads against the wall

Milling the wheat into flour

Blowing the chaff away

> They saved home-grown sunflower seeds to sow next year
> They picked a lot of brambles for the Tooting Foodival
> They cleared up rubbish out in the entrance to the Garden
> They prepared a plot and then sowed 'green manure' seed
> They made a series of plant prints for us to use as posters:
Pleased with a full-size print of a sweet corn plant
The day - like any day in the Community Garden - was not only about doing tasks. We looked at what's growing, tried radishes and rocket, chatted together, sheltered under the holm oak for lunch, experienced of being outdoors all day. And the group prepared a bit more for the one-day project they have designed, which takes place on 21st September on Tooting Common - more info to come on their Facebook page here.
Many thanks to the other garden volunteers and families who came along yesterday, and to Adrian for the loan of the flour mill.
It was a really good day!
PS: in a fortnight, on Saturday 21st Sept from 11:00-3:00, the Community Garden will be open as part of the London-wide Edible Gardens Open Day. More info to come.