Local Chapters

Westminster, MA

This BFA Discussion Group is located in and around Westminster, MA.
To contact/join, please see the contact info on the left.

Chapter Benefits & Projects: 

The Westminster BFA Discussion Group spearheads "The Growing Great Food (and Flowers!) Working Group", now in its sixth year! They meet every second Sunday of the month, January through November. Different people will be contributing to the content as the season moves along. Topics vary, but examples include building permaculture concepts into homeowner-based landscape designs, basics of soil development, balancing nutrients and the living plants digestive system, troubleshooting in a real yard with real gardens, cover crops and other wintering techniques, and more!

Another set of discussions is the "Backyard Growing Series" - a four-part series sponsored by Westminster’s Agricultural Commission. The series of discussions will be held January to April, on the 3rd Tuesday of the month, from 6:30-7:30pm, and is free and open to the public.

Upcoming Events & Meetings: 

The 2020 Backyard Growing Series
When: Every third Tuesday of the month, January - April from 6:30-7:30pm
(January 21, February 18, Mar 17, April 21)
Where: Forbush Memorial Library, Eloranta Room, 118 Main St, Westminster, MA 01473 [map]

“Biochar is a carrier of nutrients and a habitat for microorganisms” and isn’t that a statement and a half! Neil Blanchard knows how to make bio-char – but even more important…he knows WHY we SHOULD make biochar. Biochar is the modern version of an OLD idea that’s part of a fantastic soil called Amazonian Terra Preta. Over 2000 years ago, people figured out that adding charcoal and compost (our terms) into a soil could stabilize nutrients and carbon in fast eroding tropical soils (lots of water, then drought and always heat). Biochar can hold up to 5X its weight in water and can hold enormous amounts of dissolved nutrients - as well as providing condos and high-rise apartment housing for all kinds of soil microbes. Neil will fill us in on all of the details. This is a fascinating reach into history for a future solution. Come check it out!!

For more information on this series, please email altobelliml260@comcast.net and put BYG in the subject line.

Growing Great Food (and Flowers!) Working Group 2020 Schedule
When: Every second Sunday of the month January through November from 2:30-4:30 pm.
Where: 7 South St, Westminster, MA - Public Safety Building, Conference Room [map]
***Please park in the school parking lot opposite the building – don’t want you to be towed!***

The goal of the "Growing Great Food (and Flowers!) Working Group" is to produce the best quality plants of all kinds (fruits, flowers, veggies, trees…) for anyone who’s interested in asking questions, experimenting and participating. The end result should be that you have the best gardens that you’ve ever had and food to store, sell or share with family and friends – a win/win for sure! Healthy plants (food and flowers!!) make for a healthy body and a healthy community! You've heard that food is medicine? Well – it can be if grown well with all of the minerals needed to create a healthy plant. Healthy plants also help to brighten a neighborhood (everyone LOVES to look at flowers) and definitely help with climate change (and THAT’S a story to know about!). If any of this sounds interesting then come and check it out! We're looking forward to meeting you ☺

Dates and topics for 2020

Download schedule here

February 9
Planting calendars, seed planning and starting, selecting plants for beneficial insect support

March 8
Grafting fruit trees – details available at the February meeting

April 12
Inoculating logs for edible mushrooms

May 10 @ ML’s Farm
Basics of good planting, hands on
On-Farm Mineral Mixing Day. Must attend the April event if planning on attending

June 14
Making and examining Compost tea

July 12
Working with biodynamic compost and plant bio-accumulators

August 9
Cover crops, weed suppression and other options

September 13
How good is our produce? And what are we comparing it to.

October 11 @ Westminster’s Senior Center
Food storage – concentrating on lacto-fermentation and root cellars.

November 8
Tasting pot-luck, wrap up and seed swap

There’s always room for more interested people so come and bring your energy ☺
Healthy plants help to create healthy communities and healthy people!
For more information email altobelliml260@comcast.net and put GGFF in the subject line