Sorry for not posting anything the last 2 and a bit weeks but with end of school year at work I have been so bogged down that I just couldn't find the time. Today I was officially made unemployed, so now I should have the time to make regular postings on here. There is always an upside to everything. Ha ha.

So what has been happing here? The raised bed has been built, we are in the process of layering it. Sticks and logs at the bottom, card and paper next, then compost, next straw and soil mixed with a mulch over the top. It is such a massive bed that this may take a while. We are taking the sticks and logs from fields around us, the prunings from this year, but it takes time to find them and make then the correct size. All the paper and cardboard has come from waste at school. They all thought I was mad bringing it home with me!

 

As you can see it is quite a big space. It is shaded most of the day in the Summer so will be perfect for the salad crops.

 

                                                                   Paper collected from school.

 

                                                                 Cardboard collected by friends.

                                                        First layer going down. Sticks and small logs.

It will look brilliant when it is done and planted up. We think it will blend nicely with all the other rock features in the garden and set a rustic tone for visitors arriving at the gate!

So what else? I pulled some young beetroot and pickled it. I made 2 jars just to try to see if we like it. I used red wine vinegar and a few spices. If it is good I will post the recipe.

We have mated the rabbits again. We put them together and Stew did his job within the first 3 minutes. He was very keen. We left them together in his run for a few hours. Then I noticed something running on the land and Dumpling had jumped the fence. She had got onto his hutch and jumped over. Obviously she was not too impressed with his advances ha ha. It only took about 10 minutes to get her back into her pen, which could have been a lot worse! So now just wait 4 weeks to see if she has baby bunnies!

 Dumpling coming to say hello. She has really settled in well and it getting friendly towards us now.

We spent one morning cutting back the artichokes and weeding the asparagus. The artichokes had grown to about 7 foot. They look like massive thistles. We laid all the cuttings on top of the plants to rot down hoping that it will act as a mulch and feed the plants at the same time. It looks a bit untidy but if it works we will have a massive crop next year.


Artichoke bed

                                                                     Asparagus bed weed free!

Feeding time was becoming a bit of a nightmare as the chickens just want what every one else has. They think they are missing out and eat every one else's food. We made the ducks their own feeder as they are massive now. It fits 6 ducks around it easily and they seem to like it.

   New feeder make from drain pipe and laminate flooring. You can't say we don't recycle and reuse here!

                                                    The six ducks enjoying a little rest after their breakfast.

The turkey poults are growing fast. Mum is now taking them out all day, walking around foraging, and lazing in the shade of the trees. The other animals now know to stay clear of her as she turns into the turkey hen from hell if they so much as look at those poults. We have had a few launched ducks and chickens in the previous few weeks.
Paxo our Tom is still displaying and he is now mating with Cranberry again. This tells us that her hormones are going back to normal now so perhaps if we are really lucky she will start to lay more eggs. Only time will tell!

                                                     Cranberry and her poults out for a walk and forage.