Did you know…?

Walking into the Geffrye’s period gardens not only give us a sense of how gardens have evolved in English urban homes during the last 400 years, but it is also just plain pleasant! Especially at this time of the year, when flowers are blooming all around the garden: it looks like a color explosion (and it smells quite nice too!)ImageSo why do flowers look and smell so nice? Not just to please us humans, but to attract birds and insects to help pollinate them. It seems that birds, bees, and other animals love flowers just as much as people do. Image

These little pollinating creatures have been known to stop by the Geffrye’s herb gardens, so next time you come for a visit, keep an eye out, because a little bee may just be enjoying the gardens along with you.

For more information on the Geffrye, visit the website http://bit.ly/11HXyyx

And don’t forget to add us on facebook http://on.fb.me/156Q8tx

May Activities Coming Soon!

Did you join our family events in April? There are more events coming in May!

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May 11th: Lotions and Potions (for ages 2-16 years old; whole day drop in workshop)

Create pampering products using herbs, flowers and plants from the garden!

More infomration of family events from Geffrye Museum http://bit.ly/12MQIcf

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May 22nd: Making historic remedies (for adults; 6:00-8:30 pm) 

Learn about London’s famous gardeners, herbalists and apothecaries from the 1600s and 1700s and make your own historic remedies and natural cosmetics!

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But don’t forget to book your ticket in advance for this event! Tickets are £10, £7.50 concessions with a glass of summer punch.

More information of adult events from Geffrye Museum http://bit.ly/11HXyyx

For inquiry and booking, please feel free to contact us via calling 020 7739 9893, or email bookings@geffrye-museum.org.uk

Fun time at our family events!

Last week we had a great time at our family events! The three activities were really successful: many children and families attended (all the afternoon sessions were full) and they all had fun and enjoyed the activities!

See the pictures below for their creative and imaginative works!

 

The first activity was Garden on a Plate, for kids ages 5 and over, where the children created their own mini happy and healthy gardens on plates.

We inspired kids by providing them with some interesting garden pictures:

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We let them explored how gardens can be designed in very different ways and also how they can be places for feeling happy and having fun!

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One of our event planners, Catalina, said:

“Kids were very creative and imaginative! In this activity some of them made a garden with a tree house, and many with ponds, flowers, trees, paths, ducks, birds and squirrels, and also a secret house for bugs!”

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The second activity was Post a Plant, designed for children aged 5 – 8 years, who were detectives for the day, went exploring through the herb garden and created plant postcards!

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We helped them mail out their postcards so they could send their work back home.

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The third activity was Mini Hanging Gardens, designed for ages 8 and over, where kids planted their own edible gardens by using recycled containers. Now they can watch their herbs grow at home!

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They found it interesting to learn about planting gardens and how they can use the herbs in everyday life!

 

Did you join our family events on April 11th? If you missed them, come join our events in May, we have a family event, Lotion and Potion, and an adult event, Making Historic Remedies! Let’s explore the garden in the spring through our interesting and fun events!

Family Events – tomorrow April 11th at the Geffrye!

It’s almost time to participate in our fun events at the Geffrye!

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Come visit us!

See below for what we have planned for TOMORROW APRIL 11TH:

Garden-on-a-Plate – for ages 5 and over (24 places available)

  • 10.30am – 12.30pm and 2 – 4pm

Design and create a mini happy and healthy garden on a plate.

Post-a-Plant – for ages 5 – 8 years (14 places available)

  • 2 – 4pm

Be a detective for the day, go and explore the herb garden and create a plant postcard.

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Preparing the recycled materials for our mini hanging gardens!

Mini Hanging Gardens – for ages 8 and over (24 places available)

  • 2 – 4pm

Plant your own edible garden using recycled containers and watch your herbs grow at home.

Easter Treasure Hunt – All ages

  • 2 – 4.30pm

Explore the gardens, answer clever clues and collect your treasure from the Quiz Desk!

You can register for events 30 minutes before the start time, spaces are allocated on a first come, first serve basis – so arrive early, enjoy the museum, and ensure you get a space! :)

And finally, we’d like to know a little bit about you!

See you at the garden!

Welcome the Spring with herby dishes!

As the days get longer, so does the list of fresh ingredients! So how can we make good use of our gardens? We selected some seasonal recipes which use common culinary herbs to add aromatic flavour to food dishes. Let our springtime recipe selection take you to the new season with herby, healthy, and delicious food!

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Herby Lamb Burger with Beetroot Mayo

A classic flavour combination of lamb and mint, with contrasting beetroot relish! What makes this dish even more attractive is the fact that it only takes 30 minutes to prepare!

Serves 4                                       Prep 10 mins/ Cook 15 mins

Ingredients

Ÿ   400g lamb mince

Ÿ   1 small red onion, ½ grated, ½ thinly sliced

Ÿ   handful parsley, roughly chopped

Ÿ   handful mint, roughly chopped

Ÿ   1 tsp olive oil

Ÿ   3 tbsp mayonnaise

Ÿ   2 cooked beetroots, finely chopped

Ÿ   4 bread rolls

Ÿ   couple handfuls watercress

Method

  1. Mix the lamb, grated onion and herbs in a bowl with some seasoning, then divide the mix into 4 and shape into burgers.
  2. Heat a griddle pan until hot, rub the burgers with oil, and cook for 5-6 mins on each side, or until cooked through.
  3. Meanwhile, mix the mayonnaise and beetroot with some seasoning. Fill the bread rolls with watercress, a burger, a dollop of beetroot mayo and a few onion slices. Serve immediately.

PER SERVING

490 kcalories, protein 25g, carbohydrate 25g, fat 32 g, saturated fat 9g, fibre 2g, sugar 4g, salt 1.1 g

(Recipe from BBC Good Food magazine, March 2012/ http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1959658/)

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Spring Veggie Casserole with Little Herb Dumplings

A vegetarian supper full of fresh flavours, perfect for sharing with friends!

Serves 6                                       Prep 45 mins – 2hrs

Ingredients

For the dumplings:

Ÿ   100g self-rising flour

Ÿ   50g butter at room temperature, cut in pieces

Ÿ   50g mature cheddar, finely grated

Ÿ   3 tbsp finely chopped parsley

For the casserole

Ÿ   3 tbsp light olive oil

Ÿ   8 shallots, peeled and cut in half lengthways

Ÿ   250g small new potatoes, cut int half

Ÿ   3 peeled garlic cloves, cut in half lengthways

Ÿ   200g baby carrots, scraped but left whole

Ÿ   2-3 fennel bulbs (about 500g total weight), each cut into 8 wedges

Ÿ   600ml boiling vegetable stock (Marigold Swiss bouillion is good)

Ÿ   300g fruity white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio

Ÿ   pinch of muscovado sugar, light or dark

Ÿ   ½ tsp light soy sauce

Ÿ   200g green beans, trimmed and cut in half

Ÿ   250g chestnut mushrooms, halved if large

Ÿ   200g baby courgettes, each cut into 4 chunks, or 2 courgettes cut in sticks

Ÿ   2 tsp cornflour

Ÿ   ½ fresh red chilli, seeded and finely chopped

Ÿ   1 tbsp each snipped chives and chopped parsley

Method

  1. To make the dumplings, rub the flour and butter together so it looks like breadcrumbs. Stir in the cheese, parsley, and salt and pepper to season and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large pan or flameproof casserole (about 3.5 litres) over a high-ish heat, then throw in the halved shallots. Fry for 2-3 minutes till beginning to soften and turn brown and gold in places. Now still working on quite a high heat, add the potatoes and watch for the same effect, about 5-7 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon and generally moving the pan about. Add the garlic, carrots, and fennel, allowing a couple of minutes between each so they get a chance to release their flavours. Pour in the stock along with most of the wine, then stir in the sugar and soy sauce and return to the boil. Simmer covered for 10 minutes. If preparing ahead make up to the end of step 2, cool and chill for up to five hours. About 20 minutes before you are ready to serve, bring back to the boil, and continue with step 3.
  3. Stir about 2 tbsp of water into the dumpling mixture to form a soft dough. Break off small pieces to make 20-25 dumplings, then shape into rounds about the size of a cherry tomato. Add the green beans and simmer for 5 minutes, then add the mushrooms and courgettes. Stir the cornflour into the remaining wine until it has dissolved, then stir into the casserole until it thickens. Bring to the boil, stir well then gently place the dumplings on top. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer gently for about 15 minutes till the dumplings have risen, and the stew is rich and thick and the vegetables deliciously tender. Check the seasoning.
  4. Mix the chilli and herbs together in a small bowl and scatter on top of the casserole.

PER SERVING

335 kcalories, protein 10g, carbohydrate 32g, fat 17 g, saturated fat 7g, fibre 6g, sugar 0.04g, salt 0.94 g

(Recipe from Good Food magazine, April 2003/ http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/3291/)

Tell us your favourite culinary herbs and how you like to use them!

Want to know more about the herbs used in the above recipes? Come visit the award-winning herb garden at the Geffrye Museum, which has more than 170 different herbs! As of April 1st the herb garden and period gardens are now open!

Springtime is almost here!

Even though we’ve had a long, frosty winter, we’re excited for the Geffrye Gardens to re-open! In fact, we think that escaping into the Geffrye’s period gardens would be the best way to welcome in this new season. The gardens will be open this 30th of March! Even though our plants are just starting to blossom, here’s a sneak peak of what you can expect the garden to look like as spring turns into summer:

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20th Century period garden with wisteria in full bloom

As far as out project goes, we’ve also got lots of great activities planned. Keep looking to this blog for updates and reminders of what will be going on at the Geffrye gardens. Our learning team has been working hard to come up with creative and fun ideas for the opening weeks.

The first date to keep in mind is April 11th! Catalina and Jue, our learning team, been testing out lots of ideas, including “Garden on a plate” where children will be able to create their own happy gardens on a plate to take home! Below is a picture of Jue’s ideal garden.

We hope you get to go out and enjoy the gardens!

For more on what’s going on at the Geffrye, check out the Geffrye Young People’s Facebook and Twitter pages:
facebook.com/thegeffryeyoungpeoplespage
twitter.com/GeffryeYouth

What is it about Geffrye Museum’s gardens?

The Geffrye’s gardens contain the award-winning herb garden, which has more than 170 different herbs and includes plants traditionally associated with herb gardens, such as roses, honeysuckle and lilies; and period gardens, which showcase English urban garden types over the past 400 years.

But who is taking care of the garden now? UCL student Ping Ping and Liz interviewed one of Geffrye gardeners.

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Name: Heather

From: Hackney

Ping-Ping:
So Heather, how did you get into gardening?

Heather:
Well, I started out as a florist and am now been  a gardener.

Liz:
Can you tell me your favourite thing about gardens?

Heather:
I really enjoy the changes of seasons, especially the coming of Spring

Ping-Ping:
What’s your favourite part of working in the Geffrye’s gardens?

Heather:
I like the feeling of soil; I don’t wear gloves when working as I love to feel the earth on my hands!

Liz:
What are your favourite herbs and flowers?

Heather:
I really like rosemary and lavender. As far as flowers, my favourites are roses, narcissi, daffodils

Ping-Ping:
Can you give our readers a few tips about easy gardening for beginners or students?

Heather:
I’d advise them to start out with plants in pots, herbs, flowers in season – they are all easy to start with!

The Geffrye’s herb and period gardens are open from 1 April to 31 October every year. Recently we went to the museum and have spotted some signs of the coming Spring in the gardens!

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We discovered some Christmas rose between fallen leaves!

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There were also some young sprouts popped out of soil!

We can’t wait the coming of Spring in Geffrye Museum’s garden!! Are you looking forward to Spring as well? What are you looking forward to seeing in gardens?