Thursday, October 31, 2013
We had some frost earlier on, it went down to -6 but it has warmed up a bit so things are still going in the garden. Above are the sugar beets and some self sewn parsnips in the foreground. We hope to make some sugar in the next few days....it should be interesting, maybe even a complete failure ! But I would like to try.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
I bought a new ram a few weeks ago. He is called Emil and is very calm and friendly. He has the yellow head collar on. I introduced him to his new girlfriends the other day so I hope he does his stuff and we have lambs next spring! He has lovely quality wool so I hope that this will breed some good lambs which I can bring along to keep to replace their aging mothers. In a few years I will swap rams to a meat breed and breed heavier genes into the mix!
This year it has been really good for the cabbage family and the frost has come but has not been persistent and this is another batch which I picked and froze. I have been picking off the old yellowing leaves very regularly this year which helps to keep air circulating and also takes away the rotting leaves so that the mould does not spread into the sprouts themselves. They have been strong plants all year with no caterpillar damage. In fact I only did a caterpillar pick one time and I found so few I did not bother again!! I know that many people had all sorts of trouble this year. I am not sure why we got away with it. Perhaps they were just really strong plants growing in really good soil with plenty of birds around to eat the caterpillars ..? I also planted some wheat next to them which the birds stripped. I am wondering if this also encouraged the birds in to eat the caterpillars. I will do the same next year and see what happens. Perhaps I will even do a control patch without wheat....if I remember!
Monday, October 28, 2013
Inside the pig carcass there is a layer of fat which when rendered down makes excellent baking fat. I am using the dry method here, but there is a method you can use by boiling the fat in water then skimming off the fat from the surface. This apparently makes even cleaner, taste and smell free fat. Maybe I will do this the next time but this is the way which I have been using over the past few years and it is ok.
Monday, October 21, 2013
Friday, October 18, 2013
This photo shows the dog, Fenris, literally working for her dinner as she is pulling a loaded wheelbarrow of Elk feet, off cuts, lungs, liver and legs we collected from the hunting lodge in the village. She makes a big difference although to start with I am not sure she wanted to be in front of the wheelbarrow....rather in it!! I am going to chop it all up into dog dinner sized pieces and freeze it. I am desperate to get her off the rubbish dog food which you can buy from the shops. Even the expensive stuff is terrible stuff.
Thursday, October 17, 2013
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
In the last few days I have been digging up the carrots and packing them ready for future use. I am so glad that I have an earth cellar, I can not imagine life without one now!! I have a couple of sacks of peat which I use from year to year. This is not the best thing to use as far as the environment is concerned and I would like to try something else in the future. I have tried saw dust with not such good results. I would like to go up to the village sand pit (a big sand bank out in the forest) and bring home a few sacks to give it a go. Next year.....
Monday, October 14, 2013
Whilst riding to work on his motorbike, my son, Eli, had a Landrover and trailer pull out in front of him and stop in panic when the driver saw Eli coming on his bike. Eli was in hospital with a multitude of injuries so I decided to go back to England to see how he was doing. Before I left I had to clear the tunnels and the photo above shows some of the tomatoes and peppers I picked.