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Showing posts from July, 2009

In a Pickle!

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This year we planted three courgette plants in the back garden. I love courgettes, especially when they are quite small... but I also like to leave one or two to grow into marrow size so that I can stuff them... they really are one of my most favourite vegetables, however....

We have also been getting lots of broad beans, french beans and summer cabbage not to mention the goodies I am given when up at the allotment (on Friday it was spinach and lettuce)... so today I decided to pickle some of the summer veggies for using later in the winter.

Now I usually just use whatever vegetables I have too much of... and make sure that I have a bit of variety in each pot, most of the vegetables to be pickled come from my garden, which is very satisfying.


This is what I did... I chopped up a whole cauliflower and put it into a bowl. I added to that one onion that I quartered and a carrot chopped into slices. I then chopped up about 8 courgettes into quite chunky bits and put them in a different bo…

Henny Pennies!

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I thought many of you may be asking how my chickens are fairing after their horrendous ordeal with the red mites? The answer is very well indeed! And so they should... this is their new penthouse apartment.


We had a little fun the first day they moved in... we popped them into the house at bedtime and closed it up. In the morning when we opened the door they stood on the brink and looked out. It is higher than they are used to... and they hadn't negotiated a ladder before, we wondered how they would manage... would they be stuck forever in the house? No, they simply fell out, all at once in a flappy heap! Going to bed took a little longer than usual too since negotiating the ladder is a skill that takes a little time to acquire. Bluebelle flew up without touching the rungs. Wilma took it steady one step at a time and Blackie had several goes but managed to slide down the edge a couple of times before making it all the way to the top.

Inside they have a cosy nest for egg laying…

The Kindness of Nature

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It's been a very busy few days since I last posted on the blog. And funny how sometimes things dont quite go to plan but turn out ok in the end. Firstly I was supposed to be helping my daughter in law at Witney Carnival with another Help for Heroes stall but had a very bad migraine and spent most the day in a dark room... at the end of the day she had raised an amazing £1000 ... Well done Carrie and her mum! Unfortunately my migraine's seem to come on when I have too many things crowding into my brain demanding my attention. My brain is not as big as it used to be... or else I have filled it up with rubbish and I need to do a good clean out!

I continued to spend a couple of hours here and there at the allotment. The plan... according to the book I have Organic Gardening - The Natural No-Dig Way by Charles Dowding... is that you dont need to dig at all... but of course you have to dig out perrenial weeds initially before you can start the no-dig bit... which means that I ha…

The First Cut...

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...Is the deepest so the song goes. I am not sure it was deep but it was definitely hard work! We gathered together our tools......


...cold drinks and fruit and dog stuff (poo bags, water) and excitedly made our way over to the new allotment. It was really hard to decide what to do first ... it seems so big all of a sudden.



We made a start. Strimming! Well that lasted about five seconds... strimming is great on grass but a lot of what was growing had thick woody stems so we had to abandon the strimmer and concentrate on cutting it all down with the hand shears. We discovered that the bed we were working on used to be the onion bed... strong smell of onion and the occasional gone to seed onion plant... and then the big giveaway... the little plastic marker that clearly said ONIONS.




No sooner had we started than the nice couple from the neighbouring plot turned up and introduced themselves. We learned that the plot had only been abandoned for one year so in fact we are having an easy time …

CA-R-N-I-VAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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OK... it's Eynsham, not Rio, but its HOT HOT HOT!!! Forecast says there is a possibility of a few thunder showers... which we really do not want, yes I know that it would cool us down, but we have so much stuff to sell for BillyJon's Kilimanjaro challenge that a lot of it is outside of the gazebo and it would get wet and spoiled.
Firstly, I do have to say a HUGE THANKYOU to everyone who contributed and the lovely strangers who sent me hand made stuff to sell. There were lots... it was so kind of everyone. A special thank you goes to Jane who sent me this............


No not the bed... the wonderful hand made quilt! We decided to raffle the quilt as we really thought it deserved to make as much money as possible. We set the tickets at just £1 each and on the raffle alone we have made more than £6o so far... we have another carnival next Saturday (nearby market town of Witney) and then the following Saturday I will be having a stall outside our local village emporium when I will …

There's always a downside - cautionary tale

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There I was, enjoying the heatwave. Working on the computer in the garden and thanking my lucky stars for my wonderful life in general... when... my little hennies stopped wanting to go into their house at night, preferring instead trying to roost in a very small cherry tree where the branches were too thin for all but the tiniest of them. I couldn't figure it out and I couldn't let them stay huddled around the cherry tree base all night where they would be easy pickings for Mr Fox. So I cleaned out the henhouse, special clean and physically put them to bed.

The next morning little speckle lay listless and limp on the floor of the henhouse. On closer inspection she wasnt dead, but hardly alive. I put her into a cardboard box and brought her into the house where it was cooler, thinking that perhaps the intense heat had made the henhouse too warm at nights for them. Tried to get her to drink from a syringe but she expired very quickly. I was really baffled and very upset.

We…