Tuesday 14 June 2011

May 2011


DSCF0041 tiny

Cherry time!  This year nearly everyone here had a bumper crop including myself.






DSCF0043 tiny

While wandering around near the pond I found another bee orchid with a slightly different pattern to the one in the garden.

It’s now marked and I hope it will flower again next year.





11/05/2011 & 12/05/2011

DSCF0046 tiny

While clearing out the barn I decided to get rid of a bin of old wheat.  When I opened the lid I found some very surprised mice.


DSCF0051 tiny

They all buried their heads in the grain bar the look-out mouse.

DSCF0055 tiny

I carefully emptied out the bin and there were 12 mice living in there.  I think they were trapped in there a the lid was firmly on.






Jewel brought in another friend, a western whip snake as before but a bit bigger this time.



DSCF0059 tiny








DSCF0061 tiny

A walk round the pond revealed the headless corpse of one of the moor hens from the pond.  I’m now wondering if I have a mink around or if something else killed it.




DSCF0064 tiny

The hayfield was also ready for cutting over the weekend but I’d not had a chance to check out the baler but was able to get someone else to cut and bale for me this year.





DSCF0067 tiny

This year I scaled down the collection using the small tractor and the large trailer rather than the hay waggon.  When I used the hay waggon a couple of years ago I ended up having to use the kitchen steps to get up onto the waggon and then had to leave a gap in the bales to enable me to stack the bales.


DSCF0070 tiny With the trailer I could get around 22 bales on at a time from ground level.  So while it seemed like a longer process, it was actually much quicker.

The first load was used to build a set of steps to reach the hay loft.  And before long the field was half done.




DSCF0071 tiny

The field as cleared and stacked the next day with a little help from neighbours J & C and I helped them collect and stack their bales.





DSCF0074 tiny

Today was designated a cherry picking day







DSCF0075 tiny

And yet more cherries!







DSCF0081 tinyMeet the new additions.  This is Pandora with her cria Brandy.






DSCF0087 tinyWhile this is Tabitha with her cria Bethany.  Missing from the photos is Mr Frizzle.  They are the start of my Suri herd and I travelled up to Brittany to collect them and while they were there they ere entered into a show.




DSCF0135 tiny

And this is what I came away with.  Brandy, Bethany and Mr Frizzle all won their classes and Brandy went on to be Reserve Champion Suri Smile

April 2011


DSCF0013 tiny

April started with Jewel bringing home a new playmate.  It’s a juvenile western whip shake which played dead on the kitchen floor but once out in the sunshine moved so fast I could only just photograph it.


DSCF0018 tiny

I started work on the new garden area – the weeds are yet to germinate though.



DSCF0020 tiny



And May Day came a month early!






DSCF0022 tiny

Time to make a few more garden stakes.






DSCF0023 tiny

Wood preservative goes on and in the background a rose arch for the garden.

DSCF0024 tiny

Cutting up a barrel to make a couple of small ponds.

DSCF0026 tinyDSCF0025 tiny

And the pump house before it gained it’ living roof.





DSCF0027 tiny

Clear blue skies, a portent of the drought to follow and some newly spun yarn hung up to dry.


DSCF0034 tiny


DSCF0038 tiny

Living roof in progress.








DSCF0040 tiny

And in place.

Monday 13 June 2011

January to April 2011



P1280033 tinyDuring the dark evenings I’ve been getting on with carding and spinning and have nearly finished the 4 practice fleeces I have. 







P2060035 tiny

The polutunnel produced lettuce and rocket in February.







P2160004 tiny

Sunny weather brought the cats out to play. 







P2280017 tiny

The bay tree at the back of the house was getting far too high and blocking both the access to the chicken house and around the rear of the house.  Height greatly reduced but I will wait until the end of the year to thin P2280019 tinythe many trunks there, some of which are 6 inches in diameter.  It smelt wonderful while cutting it.





P3030020 tiny

Working through the nuts collected last autumn.   I’ve found that using the hammer to crack the nuts rather than nutcrackers produces a much higher proportion of whole nuts.




P3080021 tiny

A bit more dry weather and the whole of the potager has had it’s first going over with the rotovator.





P3250023 tiny

The foul drain – not only was there the problems described earlier but it turned out that the pipe was compressed to about half diameter too!  I think I’m becoming an expert on septic tanks but hopefully this will have finally cured the problems.



DSCF0005 tiny

I’ve always loved Fritillaries, these are fritillaria uva vulpis.






DSCF0009 tiny

The first asparagus and this year I can cut a few too.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

So the saying goes so the next few posts should save me a lot of writing.  Much as I wanted to keep up with the blogging, life has just taken over. 

I have toyed with closing the blog but it is useful as a diary with pictures,(as long as I post to it of course)!  So current plan is to just post photographs with captions rather than full posts to try and keep up with what I’m doing here and if I have the time and inclination I can write more.