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Archive for April, 2011

market

8 ducks

Market day in a neighbouring town, and so we went along ‘just for a look’, to see what prices are going for. It was of course.. purely accidental that we put the cat box in the back of the car. And we had a little accident and somehow registered and got a bidding number.. and another accident happened when that auctioneer was shouting and himself stuck his hand up.. and we bid for and won 5 ducklings.. the same type and age as the ducklings we hatched.
That was fun – and we got to catch up with some folk from the downsizer forum.
We decided to risk it and put the two ‘flocks’ together straight away, and they slipped together as though there had always been eight of them.
The give away, over who was who, was when we came back, the newcomers had had a very exciting time in the swimming pool – possibly they have not been offered water on this scale before. or perhaps just after a long morning with just a small dish.. either way they made up for lost time and there was water scattered everywhere.

We have progressed from a box to a sandpit/ paddling pool – we could do with a really huge plastic box.. but short of cutting down an IBC, could not find one. These sandpit shells – or apple shaped as ours is, are ideal for ducks of all ages… I have to wonder if anyone buys them for kids….

When the weather improves, we shall move them outside during the day, as they will prefer it, and can have their apple paddling pool as a pool itself, and also – ducks are messy birds.. and the sooner they are out the better!

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sowing:

spring onion – in pots in greenhouse

lettuce  – in pot in greenhouse

beet spinach – in modules in greenhouse

peas, hurst greenshaft – in trays in greenhouse

woad – in greenhouse

cucumber  – in greenhouse

pricking out:

savoy cabbages

lettuces

planting:

tomatoes, fantasio in greenhouse border

lettuce – in greenhouse border

red spring onion – into greenhouse border

peas, early onwards, second succession – into veg patch

beet spinach modules – into veg patch

harvesting:

baby lettuce

chives

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100000

Yay! today we had our 100,000th visitor to the blog.  I should prolly do something to celebrate…

*thinks*

So, how about a little give away – write a comment to this post, and in a week or so I’ll do a draw and send the lucky winner a random (prolly made out of wool) prize.

(p.s. Now I’m paranoid that no one will ever visit again.. let alone comment….)

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blackberry marble cakeYou would think, with all the barbecues we had over the weekend, and a dragon slaying meal, and do it yourself ploughman’s lunches at the picnic table, with our own home grown home cured ham, and homemade pickles and chutneys and relishes, and then the chocolate egg mountain, that a dessert would be unnecessary… but our son knows his rights – we only have pudding on special occasions and on Sundays, and he pointed out Easter Sunday was both.

We were having a day off on Sunday, but I like a spot of baking so I decided to make up a cake, and came up with blackberry marble cake.  It’s just an all in one sponge (4oz each of butter, sr flour and sugar 2 eggs.. wizz wizz.. ) and then I stirred in some blackberry coulis into half and then splodged it into the pan with some plain mix.  I may have got over excited with the blackberry butter cream icing.. as there appears to be more of it than cake..

The last of it went off in various lunchboxes today.

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easter

chicken egg cosy 1

Even hotter today. Hope of rain went away yesterday with a vague clap of thunder and the teeniest of rain showers that did not even make the ground wet, and teh forecast gives sunny hot weather all week. Bit worrying when it comes to water. Watering our plants takes an hour each, each evening. And then the sheep, chickens and ducks all need some.
But it has been lovely. and the heat has forced us to relax, as there is no chance of overworking when it is so hot. In fact, we took today off.. almost unheard of. Well of course we still checked the animals (watching the sheep carefully, in full fleece), pulled a few nettles, set up an ibc to collect rain water (when it comes back), but there was a fair bit of sitting in the shade, me reading, and then purusing gardening books,and watching the many orange tips flip past, himself whittling away at some wood. Oh and some eating of hot cross buns and easter eggs. Very nice.
Barbecue again this evening.

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dragon

Tradition is tradition.

It’s St George’s day. and there are dragon’s to be slain.  done.

Full now….

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sowing:

beetroot – in modules in the greenhouse

peas, early onward, 3rd succession – in trays in the greenhouse

radishes – greenhouse border

planting:

spring onion – in the greenhouse border

tomatoes, sweet olive – in greenhouse border

beet spinach modules – into veg patch

tomatoes, fantasio – in greenhouse border

lettuces – in greenhouse border

harvesting:

rhubarb

mint

chives

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