Wednesday, 27 July 2011

First Duck Egg!

We got our first duck egg today.

Emma thinks it was Alice (the White one) she has noticed a change in her recently.
It is quite different from the chickens eggs, it's large, more rounded at the ends and its white but with an almost greenish tint to it.

I think it may be a case of one fried egg cut into 4 later this evening!

Jayne x

Saturday, 23 July 2011


The garden has been a little neglected recently, partly due to this.

Oil seed rape growing in the field at the end of the garden, very pretty but it gives me dreadful hay fever so I've been limiting my outdoor time.

There are a few things doing well though.

We've had loads of raspberries, there is a bit of a pause in production at the moment but new ones are forming on the autumn fruiting ones.

I am a little disappointed in the new lasagne beds, the layer of cardboard doesn't seem to have done a very good job at keeping the weeds at bay (maybe I didn't overlap it enough) and the bale of straw i used must have had lots of wheat seed in it which germinated. Some of my usual crops didn't do well, although the runner beans are flowering so we should have some beans to eat soon.

And the corn is doing really well.

I am really pleased with the forest boarder though.

It's looked really good and we have had quite a bit of food from it. Best of all it has pretty much looked after itself.

I planted lettuces amongst the other plants and they have done really well and seemed to have gone unnoticed by all the usual pests.

There are lots of herbs all doing well planted among the fruit trees and bushes.

This plant i particularly love, it's tree spinach, it started life as a very small plant bought at a local garden centre in the spring and has grown to 4 or 5 foot tall. It's really attractive, the small pink leaves are great in salads and the larger leaves can be used as a substitute for spinach.

I'm hoping to get out into the garden this weekend, now the rape seed flowers have finally gone over, to try to get the weeds back under control so I can plan for some winter crops.

Sunday, 3 July 2011

New additions

A couple of weeks ago my sister phoned and asked if I would go with her to pick up a couple of new hens to add to her flock. She had found a place on the Internet that is about half an hour away from me. I agreed but said that I wouldn't be buying any as the smallholders show at Ardingly was coming up and I wanted to buy some there.

So one morning she picked me up, she also brought along her lovely friend Sally, who also keeps chickens and off we went.

When we got there we followed the signs down the side of the house into the garden, which initially didn't look that large, and down the garden path which went on and on until to our surprise the garden opened out into a large orchard with loads of chickens! Heaven! There we met a very friendly chap who showed us some hybrids in loads of different colours, all beautiful. Well you guessed it I couldn't resist.

Meet Primrose and Cathy, sorry the photo isn't great they are still a bit shy, but are settling in well. If you live in Kent and are after some chickens I can thoroughly recommend Hen House Poultry in Teston, he has a website with all his available birds, if you google it you should find it.

Well yesterday was the smallholders show, we had a lovely day, the weather was perfect. We saw lots of lovely animals

And went to a talk on bee keeping, which is something we have been considering, it was very interesting. We are hoping to attend a meeting of the local beekeeping association soon so we can handle them to see how we get on. I'll blog more about this later.

Anyway we were at the show, but we weren't going to buy any livestock as I just got two new girls.

I'm so weak, meet Buffy, Willow and Xander. My buff Peking trio, I have a cockerel! We are hoping to raise some chicks in the future, probably next spring, watch this space!

Jayne x