It was a most enjoyable and successful event last night at the Friends’ annual quiz night, where eight teams pitted their wits in the face of some challenging and wide ranging questions. The ever popular ‘mystery bag’ round had us all rustling and jostling the contents of our bag, trying to distinguish twenty objects ranging from a birthday cake candle to a shot glass to a curtain hook – baffling! The ‘musicals’ round had some people breaking into renditions of ‘Consider Yourself’ and people were scratching their heads over acronyms such as USB, HDMI, NASA and LED. Many thanks to Kevin and Lynette Bowers-Flint for masterminding the questions and providing us with such an enjoyable evening.
With the help of the raffle, the event raised close to £300, a tremendous result. This will go towards replenishing the stock of tools and equipment for our hard working band of garden volunteers. An extra bonus, announced on the evening, was a hugely generous offer from Kevin Bowers-Flint to use the Councillors Community Fund to purchase a Bosch garden shredder at a cost of £389! This will help us recycle even more of our garden waste into wonderful, soil enriching compost, save us money on bought in compost and mean less burning of waste and release of CO2 into the environment – win win. It is this kind of help that makes all the difference and shows just what is possible when people get their heads together!
The Friends’ next event is the AGM on Saturday 11th March at 2pm in the conference room at Cressing. We have had a busy and eventful year so please come along to hear all that we have achieved, including a range of personal accounts from the people who are involved and make it all happen. We will also be showing the film of Apple Day and launching the new garden leaflet and there is the added attraction of the Oakleigh Food and Home Fair on the same day.
One of the nice things about this time of year is the tempting hint of spring’s approach as more plants emerge from the wintry ground and cheer us with their flowers. This week I was delighted to see the bright, chirpy flowers of winter aconite (Eranthis hyemalis) carpeting the ground beneath some horse chestnut trees. They grow well in damp shady places and the clumps increase year on year making them a very worthwhile garden investment.
Originating from Southern Europe it is a perennial in the buttercup (Ranunculaceae) family and one of the first flowers to appear from mid-January onwards. Widely naturalised along roadsides, churchyards and gardens, it takes advantage of the early spring light under deciduous trees, only to completely disappear underground again by the time leaves are on the trees. They have been nicknamed ‘choirboys’ from the ruffs of leaves that surround them.