Author Archives: Zing

Ready, steady, goat! The Oxford and Cambridge Goat Race 2012

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    Off to the #goatrace at @spitz_cityfarm! I’m putting my bets on the Cambridge goat.
    Sat, Apr 07 2012 07:31:46
  2. Over Bank Holiday weekend, East End Gardener arrived at picturesque Spitalfields Farm, London. The farm has organised the annual Goat Race for the past four years to raise money for their excellent community farming and animal welfare projects. Tickets were £5, with free refreshments sponsored by Hendricks Gin.
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Is the hosepipe ban affecting you?

hosepipe ban uk london

Watering the lawn is going to prove a bit harder from today, as seven water suppliers introduce a hosepipe ban across southeast England.

Thames, Southern, South East, Anglian, Sutton and East Surrey, Veolia Central and Veolia South East water companies have all imposed the ban, which affects up to 20m people. Flouting the ban could mean a £1,000 fine.

And if you’re suspicious that your neighbours are watering their roses on the sly, some companies have even set up a hotline for you to grass (um…) them up.

If you’re worried, the Guardian has a handy checklist of what you can and can’t do under the ban.

How do you guys feel about this? My garden is far too small to even warrant a hose, but my aunt in north London isn’t exactly thrilled at the prospect of having to use a watering can on her vegetable patch. Are you going to be affected by the ban?

By Zing Tsjeng. Photo by Jez Page under a CC licence

Are the Olympics hurting your gardens?

data olympics complaints

 These words were taken from complaints made by east London resident infuriated by the Olympics construction. Click

How are the Olympics affecting your gardening? We want to hear from people worried about the impact of the games. Get in touch: eastendgardener@gmail.com

By Hannah Bass.

Gardeners, have you tried Pinterest?

Any gardeners heard of Pinterest? I’m obsessed. It’s a great little image-sharing community that’s a cross between Twitter and Tumblr – members ‘pin’ their favourite pictures onto a virtual pinboard to share with others. It’s a neat way to organise your photos for gardening inspiration (or as we put, greenspiration).

Here are some of my favourite Pinterest photos – click on the pics for their Pinterest source.

And don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest!

Make a date with a seed swap

seedy sunday seed swap

Fancy getting exchanging some of your old seed packets for exciting new ones – for free? Seedy Sunday is a UK-wide community event that lets thrifty gardeners spring clean their seed stock and get some new seeds in exchange.

The London swap is part of a skill share day, with advice for new gardeners and gardening mags and books up for grabs. But if you’re not in London, don’t despair – the kick-off event for Seedy Sunday is in Brighton, and swaps are being held all over the country (see full list here). So grab your unloved seed packets and get stuck in!

London Seed Swap
6 February, 2-4pm
Tottenham Chances Club
399 High Road
N17 6QN

By Zing Tsjeng. Photo by Duncan Creamer under a CC licence

East End Gardener’s Last-Minute Christmas Guide

Christmas postman gardening urban gardening presents
Christmas is a week away, hurtling towards us like a Crimbo asteroid. You’ve put gift-buying off and now you’re panicking.

No worries! Here is East End Gardener’s Last-Minute Christmas Guide – thoughtful gifts to get the gardeners in your life, helpful hints if loved ones need reminding, or just ideas so you can treat yourself over the Christmas period. Every item listed is available online, so you don’t brave the high street.

For the complete beginner: Rocket Gardens send over a boxful of baby plants, ready for the newbie gardener to pop into a pot or planter. They even offer boxes with different specialities, from readymade gardens perfect for window boxes to boxes of salad greens. Spring vegetable gardens available from £21.99

For the home-loving gardener: These lavendar pillows would smell fantastic in any home AND they go towards a good cause – the Guerilla Gardening project, which is busy making London green again with on-the-fly gardening. Lavender pillow, £15

For the green reader: There are a load of gardening books out there, but we especially like Sarah Raven’s The Great Vegetable Plot, which is a great guide to creating the perfect veg garden – and it includes recipes! The Great Vegetable Plot, £13.28

For the guerilla gardener: Calling all green activists! If you want to see a splash of wildflower colour in your city, opt for these seed bombs – a great way to get growth going in hard-to-reach places. This pack makes up to 20 seed bombs. Seed bomb kit, £5

Merry Christmas from all of us at East End Gardener!

By Zing Tsjeng. Photo from George Eastman House Photography Collection via Flickr under a CC licence.

Pothole Gardening with Steve Wheen

Steve Wheen, better known as  The Pothole Gardener, has been creating little pop-up gardens all over London since last year. His blog chronicles his guerilla gardening adventures and gets hundreds of thousands of hits from all over the world.

You could say gardening’s in Steve’s blood – his granddad was the first to breed red trumpeted daffodils, all the way over in Australia! We caught up with Steve at Columbia Road Flower Market, where we helped Steve with a little garden (read his blogpost about it). Here are our pics from our little adventure, plus Steve’s top tips for wannabe pothole gardeners:

Firstly, have a clear vision of what you’re creating, and picture the little garden in your mind. Plan your garden out and choose the right plants accordingly. Are you going to feature one flower, like a daffodil or a Gerber?

Considering a pothole with the guerilla gardener Steve Wheen

Steve considering a potential pothole garden

Layer your little garden in levels. You want the smaller plants towards the front, and larger plants at the back. Perhaps you might choose some grass to cover the soil? Think about where you want to draw your audiences eye in the garden. Also, try to not plant things which are too tall, especially if you’re planting in a pothole!

Pothole gardener Steve Wheen guerilla gardening

Use a variety of plants with different colours for maximum impact!

Choose plants for the right time of year, think about what’s colourful and in season. My favourites are bulbs in little gardens, but there are so many options available, make sure you do your research.

Pothole gardener Steve Wheen guerilla gardening

Who doesn't love getting Christmas cards in the mail?

If you’re going to add some props, make sure you leave some room for them and try to ensure they’re to scale. There’s no point in having giant props and tiny plants- or the other way around.

Make sure you take your camera with your gardening, and of course, watch out for cars!

Pothole gardener Steve Wheen guerilla gardening

The final product, on an East London side street near you!

Thanks for a great Sunday afternoon, Steve!

By Zing Tsjeng