Occasionally and briefly on a ‘Work’ day, we do a little work between drinking tea.

The hot water is brewed on a storm kettle / ghillie kettle / kelly kettle, and then tea drunk in abundance. The fire  uses just a few twigs and newspaper in the centre to boil a thin layer of water around the outside of the kettle. These are expensive to buy, made from stainless steel or aluminium, but very cheap to run, so long as we maintain a supply of dry twigs.

Between brews, the fire can be kept smouldering by placing a turf over the flames. It is also possible to buy accessories to make toast, or support a saucepan on  top of the kettle.

Andy makes tea in Gary and mark's absence...

The above is a very rare sight, Andy making the tea, usually it is Gary.

Some time ago, we made several car tyre wormeries, which at the Patch do not get fed enough kitchen scraps to run effectively, but the one by the greenhouse door, with a paving slab atop makes a perfect stable base for the kettle, above the inquisitive fingers of any small people on site.

Various places online to buy, but http://www.kellykettle.com/ is a good place to start.

And when it gets wet, we all gather in the greenhouse to sip tea and discuss the work we should be doing, or solve world problems over a cuppa.

The tea break ‘creates more edges’ which are largely social – it brings people together that may have been working in different parts of the garden during the day so helps to create beneficial relationships, through discussion and sharing (biscuits, views, ideas, plans and interests) that would otherwise be missed

May workday teabreak sheltering from rain

May workday teabreak sheltering from rain

We don’t grow our own tea plants, and whilst there are an increasing selection of herbs grown on site, most people opt for the common or garden tea, obviously organic and/or fairtrade wherever possible. The drinking water comes onsite in either a plastic container courtesy of Mark, or occassionally a demijohn from Andy.


Andy, Jan 2012

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