Our home grown jungle. Supposed to be our front garden, but has now become overwhelmed with Spring growth, and so needs to be cut, but not with the lawnmower because that would faint with shock if presented with such verdancy, so therefore scything has to be done first. As you can see in the photo above, I have made a start.
But then there are the thistles growing everywhere, looking like a marching army especially out on the main field, but Lester to the rescue.
He has been digging up one wheelbarrow load of thistles per day, sometimes two if it is not a working day when he needs to be online at 9am. He has also rendered the side field devoid of thistles as well. Now there is the back field thistle army to conquer.
We have a new neighbour, and he has turned the small field beside his house into a garden.This was where a lot of thistle seeds blew in from.Hopefully our efforts and his efforts might keep the thistle population down.
It has been a manic year for big weeds, the type which are aggressive and invasive, and are coming into flower ahead of when they ought to be. Because of the ongoing wet and dull weather we are having, they have time to have two spurts of growth this year. Therefore we are mounting a defense against them, but staying organic so not using chemicals. This, then, is the less glamorous side of smallholding, but it does keep us fit.
Meanwhile, I noticed that Veg Plots One and Two will need scything again soon, as do the ex-pig pens which are going to be turned into chicken runs eventually when time allows.
And then there is the using up of last year's butternut harvest, which have been lying happily on the floor of the Half Barn but are now starting to show signs of rot, so I have been sharing the rotting ones with our chickens, and the still good ones I have been cooking. but not sure whether to make
a batch of soup to freeze or to dehydrate them. I have got as far as whizzing up the mixture in my blender, but have run out of effort with that task for the moment as the sun is shining and I feel the urgent need to get outside to replenish my Vit D and Vit C stores.
I am not going to complain about the weather we have been having this year. It is as it is. We do have a lot of sunny and dry weather normally, just not this year. So..... boots on, scythe sharpened.......and thank you to Christian, our neighbour, who helped me get my blade sharpened better by showing me the correct way to use a wet stone, bless him, and for the fun we had trying to outdo each other as we attacked his own weedy jungle with our newly sharpened scythes...... .
And a quick note about the ongoing 'do we or do we not keep our house cows' saga: We are keeping them, and have confirmed the finality of this decision after weeks and weeks of 'do we or do we not', by investing in this machine, which is a portable milking machine:
The whole 'lets keep the cows' project is going to cost us a couple of thousand pounds, but not to have the milk and the products I make from it would make our kitchen pantry sparser than what we want it do be, so hey ho, the money is to be spent. Lester is hand milking the cows in the sheep barn at the moment after an all night romping session was had between Lissie and Bonny which turned their pen into a quagmire of muckiness. Bonny was in season, so Lester is waiting until Lissie has her season before he cleans the pen out. Lots of hefting of the wheelbarrow to be done in the next few weeks then, but lots of lovely manure to go out onto the veg plots.
Oh but now I have lingered too long with you, and it is time for our mid morning cup of milky coffee, so I must close now,
so,....bye for now,