We’ve had very festive and very floral start to December with several visits from the ‘floristry elves’ who have been busy at the farm preparing and sending Christmas wreaths to all the good boys and girls across the UK. We’ve also hosted some fabulous wreath making workshops and classes, enabling customers to design, prepare and create their very own Christmas door wreaths; which as tradition dictates will welcome Christmas cheer into their homes.
Speaking of Christmas cheer, the farm yard is now adorned with twinkling lights, Christmas tree’s and a couple of bright, prancing friends at our entrance to welcome you to Chalkpit Farm. Our florists have also been busy with our neighbours too and have created some stunning door installations that shimmer and shine with a festive glow above the Bourne Gallery entrance. We are also welcoming a new business to the yard this month, who will be.
December is also an important time for hops old and new. We’ve now had the first frost of the year which means we’ll be out in the hop gardens and fields replacing dead plants and male hops with new, more viable female rhizomes for the year ahead. It’s also the time where hop plants are lifted from the soil and prepared for distribution to our customers and growers across the UK. So if you’ve ever thought about growing hops in the garden or perhaps for brewing, now is a great time to order them online and get started! (We recommend either Fuggle, Prima Donna, Golden Tassels or Challenger however there are over 40 varieties available, so you have plenty of choice!).
Out on the farms, tupping (when a ram is presented to ewes for mating) has already started to take place ready for lambing season in the spring, cattle and livestock are coming indoors for the winter to help prevent poaching of the ground soil in wet and cold weather, and farm maintenance continues to be a focus as we prepare for next year. Further north, Santa is also preparing his sleigh with winter tracks, high-visibility vest and anti-freeze, ready for his long trip this Christmas; a good reminder to us all to be careful on country lanes this winter with the cold, icy conditions.
Back in the warmth of the farm shop and Christmas is definitely in the air! (in addition to the usual smells of hops, lavender and country flowers). We’ve got plenty of festive picks stocking the shelves and our rustic tree decorations have been lovingly hand-crafted by our florists this year. For those relatively local to the farm, we also have a selection of foliage, wreaths and Christmas trees still available on our honesty trolley outside the shop, so pop down at any time of the day or evening and pick up some festive cheer! We’re also hosting our annual Carol Singing on the 17th December at Chalkpit Farm to raise money for MNDA, so please do pop down for a mulled wine and mince pie if you are in the area.
On that note, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you a very merry Christmas and wish all of our customers, followers and friends a healthy and happy new year.