Where growing, making & good living come together

A cracking start to Spring

Posted by on Tuesday 22 March 2011 in chickens, growing, making | 3 comments

Oh what a beautiful day!

I know yesterday was officially the first day of Spring but it was a usual sit-at-computer rush-off-to-rehearsal day for me, whereas I got out in the Spring sunshine today. I’d decided to have a day away, or at least largely away from my computer – and couldn’t have scheduled it better weather-wise.

We had our first breakfast al fresco – sitting on the sun trap of a balcony. The idea of having breakfast on a balcony was one of the things that sold the house to us – the balcony faces into the woods and it’s a gorgeous view, even with the trees still leafless:

(The two horizontal strips of green at the bottom of the photo are just over the stream at the bottom of the garden – it’s wild garlic. There is *so much* wild garlic in the woods – and thankfully plenty in places not often frequented by dogs.)

After breakfast, I cleaned out the chicken coop and since I was working hard, I thought some of the chickens should be busy too – I put Lime & Green to work in the portable run I made the other week, weeding one of the veg beds. They worked like troopers…

Except for when they got distracted by a dried leaf caught in the wire.

(By the way, since it was sunny, both cats wandered down into the garden, saw the girls in the portable run, thought their luck was in so crouched down – then realised the chickens were a. bigger than them b. had sharp beaks and c. had bigger claws so slunk off to continue their sun worship elsewhere. It was funny to watch them go through the exact same actions.)

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On my mind – unusual spaces, seeds & no kindling

Posted by on Thursday 17 February 2011 in growing | 8 comments

Rhonda on Down To Earth has a weekly “on my mind” photo feature – an illustration about what we’re all thinking about today. She’s been thinking about handmade, handstitched linens today, I’ve been thinking about …

strange spaces in the garden, epitomised by this ledge behind the greenhouse. I want to increase the amount of things we grow in the garden, which means using all our space as efficiently as possible. This space is small but gets good sun – I could put herb pots on there or make a trough/window box to fit there instead. It wouldn’t be very accessible for picking things from it in the summer though – but I’d like some flowers in the garden to attract bees so maybe this is a good place for them.

I’ve been thinking about this today because this box is praying on my mind –

It’s sorted in planting order but I haven’t decided where everything is going yet or started preparing the beds…

Away from growing, I’ve also been thinking about our empty kindling boxes.

It’s my job to keep them filled them up but I’ve been slack of late… Must make time to refill them tomorrow!

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Chickens playing out in the garden

Posted by on Thursday 13 January 2011 in chickens | 0 comments

Since it is a nice (if windy) day and Lily-dog was distracted in the top part of the garden barking at the bin men (they’re stealing our rubbish, woof woof woof!), I decided to let some of the chickens play out in the garden this morning. (Because the garden is pretty open at the moment, and there is invariably a dog running around, this doesn’t happen much.)

Mauve, Blue and slowly refeathering Lime – three of the original ISA Browns – were the first batch out – enjoying the good pickings of the raised bed next to the coop, including a rather succulent and long worm! (Photos of Mauve, Blue then Lime & Blue)

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Quick new chicken update

Posted by on Wednesday 24 November 2010 in chickens | 0 comments

Quick chicken update: the new girls seem well settled in. Things aren’t perfectly friendly yet but a pecking order seems well established and there doesn’t seem to be anywhere near as much bullying/intimidation.

The blacker Black Rock (above) – who was initially too afraid to leave the coop – is now probably the outgoing of them, but the other Black Rock is also pretty friendly. The Buff Leghorn is a bit more flighty but that’s to be expected.

The others are still as confident and clucky as ever.

Chickens are *ace*.

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Frugal, cooking, growing and making link love

Posted by on Friday 19 November 2010 in chickens, cooking, frugal, growing, meta, wood stuff | 2 comments

It’s super foggy here this morning so I need some ace inspiration to get going – and I thought you might need some too. Here are some of my favourite reads from the last few weeks…

(For anyone who cares, the first is from the top of our garden, looking into the woods next door/at the bottom of the garden – and our chicken coop is in the bottom right; the second is the bandy trees at the bottom of our garden, just behind the chicken run; and the third is over our wood pile to the north, we can’t see our neighbour in that direction in the summer – or when it’s foggy!)

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