Big season shift in October

In October, the big season shift has been played out by taking out all the tomatoes and cucumbers and filling the polytunnels with salads for mid-winter – watercress, wild rocket, salad rocket, winter purslane, endive, Asian greens, lettuces, sorrel and herbs.

Meanwhile, we continue to harvest the autumn salad mix – curly kale, cavolo nero, leeks, celeriac, beetroot, fennel, chard, spinach.

The squash is now cured (skin hardened by leaving in the polytunnel to dry out) and in storage, the garlic is still going strong from the store and the chillies are all going to Andy at the builders merchants in Aylsham to be made into chilli sauce.

Eves Hill Veg Co was set up in April 2016 to provide a space for people to learn about organic vegetable growing, working together on the land to provide fresh local produce of the highest quality.

One of the big things about our second growing season has been the traineeship programme.

This year Izzy, Ric and Frances took on the challenge of the voluntary programme for 1½ days a week from April to October, each with different aims and ambitions for learning.

Last Wednesday was the last day of their eight-month traineeship and it has been such a wonderful journey to be on with them all.

Frances has spent the summer working on a wildflower farm and is now taking her RHS Level 2 horticulture qualification at Easton & Otley College.

Ric is moving away from his work as a composer as his passion for land-based work grows, and is off to Spain to live in an eco-community.

Izzy has been sharing her newly developed gardening and people skills at The Grange, near Swaffham, a project for refugee groups to take respite in beautiful surroundings.

She said: “It has been a privilege to work outside every week amongst nature and amazing people.

“This traineeship has taught me invaluable growing and gardening skills, and I now know that I can successfully propagate, look after and harvest vegetables. I have also learnt how to take responsibilities and to have more confidence in myself.

“There is a rich biodiversity at the farm and it has been incredible to see it throughout different seasons.

“I have met a network of wonderful people, both volunteers and customers, who are full of knowledge and support and will hopefully be people I know for a long time.

“One experience that will stick with me is joining in with the hectic harvests – and to literally put food on people’s plates.

“The best thing, however, was getting to eating yummy organic vegetables every week.  I can’t wait to continue my time beyond this traineeship.”

Eves Hill Veg Co is located 1 mile southeast of Reepham on Norwich Road. Look out for the big black barns and entrance to Eves Hill Farm on the left, after the “hidden dip” signs.

Veg bags are available weekly to collect from the farm any time from Thursday at 3 pm. They can also can be collected from Erpingham after 5.30 pm, from Bread Source in Aylsham on Fridays after 10 am and Cawston on Fridays after 10.30 am.

Small veg bags are £6 and large veg bags are £10. Every week they contain a range of seasonal produce, harvested to order.

Volunteer days are every Wednesday from 10 am – 4 pm. No experience necessary. Bring lunch. Stay for an hour or two or join us for the whole day.

Hannah Claxton 07876 354363 or email

Photos: (top) Mid-winter salads in the polytunnels; (bottom): Former Eves Hill Veg Co trainees Ric and Izzy