Dig for victory ! Dance for Joy! Sing for the soul!

Many will be will be waking up to the grim reality of self isolation for the first time.

However the good news is Raglan has had some rain and the ground is moist, so get digging. Dig for Victory as they did in the last War. Germinate vegetable seeds, plant seedlings, dig out the compost heap, nurture the worm farm and cultivate the garden. It’s a great solitary exercise, a good healthy workout, an inexpensive activity with lucrative results. If all else fails read a gardening book and share the knowledge. Keep on digging!

In  1941 Women’s War Service Auxiliary (WWSA) – or “Women Without Sex Appeal” as they were sometimes called – worked the land and  loaded up their bikes to deliver veggies to orphanages, the elderly and soldiers’ wives.

My Grandfather was a “Dad’s Army Veteran” and reluctantly dug up his prize flower garden to grow extra vegetables. He  worked through the night to help build submarines and during the day was a one-man- band Air Raid Warden and needed food to feed his “flock”.  However you don’t have give-up your flowers “you need them for your Soul”. I have successfully conquered the art of hanging baskets and I am happy to pass on the secrets.

The ancient idea of Allotments sprang up in England during the First World War, but they’ve never really took off in New Zealand.  Rural areas were pretty much self-sufficient and soon rekindled the art of gardening. While in the towns many had quarter-acre sections, there wasn’t the need for community gardens.

”Community Victory Gardens” have started spring up throughout the world including New Zealand, during recent years. Supported by Parliament and encouraged by local governments, schools and different interested bodies, we have become much more aware of the economical and health benefits of growing our vegetables. Communities grow too as friendships, skills, community pride & resilience flourish.

  The Raglan Horticultural Society is  Raglan’s oldest group and  began 114 years ago – and it’s still going strong today educating  young and old in the art of horticulture.

 Raglan Zero Xtreme Waste and the Whāingaroa Environment Centre  both lead the way 20 years ago  supporting environmental education and sustainability, recycling and dealing with landfill management promoting worm farming and dealing with environmental issues.

 More recently Timebank and Crop Swap have been instrumental in connecting people,   creating a tool library, a seed bank, community gardens and school projects.  Organic gardening, permaculture, composting, worm farming, companion planting, rat trapping, are many of the topic shared.

 Meanwhile Stay at Home, be strong, keep safe, send love, and   keep a watch out for your elderly neighbours.

What’s on

Nia Dance now live online with Belinda

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Pauline Abrahams