Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Wednesday 2 October 2013

Masters Conference 2013 Garden Organic Ryton.

8 am on a sunny September Saturday morning saw me heading off to Garden Organic HQ at Ryton.

Having arrived safely and refreshed myself with coffee and cake, I chatted to various friends and then the Conference proper started in a huge marquee in the grounds, with Dr Margi Lennartson welcoming  us to the Conference.

More than 215 volunteer Master Composters, Master Gardeners, Seed Stewards and other like minded volunteers attended  the Masters Conference for a day of activities organised to celebrate their achievements.

A series of organic gardening themed workshops took place across the day with subject areas including community composting, wildlife gardening, soil science, chicken keeping and fruit growing advice.

I opted to do the Hens@Home training workshops. This is a new scheme which trains Master Composters and Master Gardeners as "Hen Ambassadors"  to encourage and mentor people who want to keep chickens in their gardens. The scheme was launched at this Conference. and you can see a photo of some of us here

We took part in a series of workshops and much information was exchanged and discussed. Some of us kept hens and knew a fair bit about them while others did not know so much, so it was really enjoyable. We were given an excellent handbook on basic chicken keeping (as always anything produced by Garden Organic is excellent) and also had sessions from  a BHWT  tutor. He bought along some lovely ex commercial hens and everyone enjoyed cuddling them :)

Professor Chris Baines addressing the gathered members.

Chris Baines is a Garden Organic Ambassador and campaigner for urban nature conservation and he treated us to an informative and inspirational speech,  highlighting the actions we can take now, to protect our natural environment for the future

 Everyone was very attentive :)

After the Awards were presented, we ate cake!

Compost related, of course

I went back to the final session of the Hens@Home training

And then spent a bit of time wandering around the gorgeous gardens at Ryton

Ending with a good look around the Composting area :)

I didn't get back home until after 8 pm so it was a very long day and the driving made my back ache.
As always though I came away invigorated and recharged from talking to so many fellow Composters and Gardeners about our passion for Organic methods.

You can see more images from the day on the Garden Organic  Flickr stream

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