April 8: Bees, foraging recipes, reviews, Neighbourhood Watch tips, Toni Kent blog

Welcome to this week’s Seasonal Snippets:

Beekeeping in April – after a mild winter, Jan Doyle from Newbury Beekeepers reports that bees are experiencing a chilly spring. But they’re happy the oil seed rape is coming into flower – so if the weather warms up while flowers are still out there will be lots of honey this year

• several years ago I took a foraging course with James Feaver at Hedgerow Harvest and am still inspired by what I learnt.  Wild Garlic (ramsons) is one of my favourite wild leaves as it is quite easy to identify and very tastey. With the ingredients we happened to have, I made Wild Garlic Husto (cross between hummous and pesto) but you could make up a similar dip.

• nettles are perhaps the easiest leaf to identify but they are more daunting to use. Just think nutrition and revenge and check out my How to Cook Nettles – Bird’s Nest recipe

• the best foraging news is that James Feaver is offering PP readers a £10 discount off his next Spring Green Foraging Course in Aldbourne on Sat 23 April!

• thanks to PP reader Linda Tame for her review of the opening night of the Watermill’s touring production of One Million Tiny Plays About Britain in East Garston Village Hall this week.

Newbury in Bloom is back! Check the link for the competition categories you can enter and how to rent a hanging basket from Newbury Town Council

• Angela Money from Neighbourhood Watch recommends setting up a No Cold Calling Zone on your street if you are pestered by doorstep traders. It’s easy to set up – see here for details

•  Why Freelancing is Fabulous – an inspiring account by local blogger/author Toni Kent of the unexpected pleasures of leaving corporate life. Toni has also published a great poetry anthology: I Need a Wife – which PP book reviewer Hilary Stockwell reckons should be on every teenagers reading list!

• check out this great Artikenisis Art Colouring Book of local West Berks & North Hants scenes. Please “pledge” funds by THURS 15 APRIL towards the printing costs via their Kickstarter campaign (you only pay if the total amount is reached). A pledge will effectively buy you a digital download, a signed copy of the book (if and when it is published) or a framed original drawing!

If you would like to review a book/play/film/music just send me an email. Enjoy the sunshine



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