Kia ora everyone! I've run across these forums intermitantly for a few years now and finally got the nerve to get stuck in.
My partner and I are flatting at the moment, but always looking for places where I can garden and practice building real skills (cooking, woodwork, bone carving, sewing, spinning, etc)--my real hobby, I like to say, is to collect other hobbies! I'm really interested in the badge programme you are developing here, as it seems like a great way to continue building skills in a variety of areas while surrounded by a supportive community
We've just celebrated the summer solstice here, and the strawberry harvest for Christmas is looking pretty good, and my plums are starting to get ripe--though my resident blackbird family is quite keen on knocking them out of the tree before they're ripe. To make good of the situation, I learned that the unripe fallen plums can be used to make sweet and sour sauce (and indeed this is a traditional use for them)--delicious! I've a bunch of heirloom plants and have been involved with a local
seed saving/sharing group. It's very challenging to get new seed into the country, so even more important that people
keep growing and saving seed from heirloom plants! I was very lucky to source some woad seeds (everyone has stopped carrying them, it seems--you have to know someone, and the seeds have a very short germinability window), and am very much looking forward to experimenting with getting blue colour, and when I harvest seed from the plants, test using woad to remediate soil in some more contaminated areas.
Hope all of you are faring well in this challenging time -- kia kaha!