Here on the hill there has been snow, frost, sunshine, rain and tremendous gales. Every possible type of weather has come to visit and play with us little folk here on the ground.So much rain has fallen in the past few weeks that the cows actually had to be brought back in again after been let out to pasture for the summer months, the wind has been so strong that the gales took down another shed on the allotments, pollytunnel number 2 and another couple of panes from our greenhouse, the temperature so changeable that we are still experiencing frosty covered mornings. Today the sun is shining brightly,.... and the wind is blowing the grass almost horizontal. It seems to be a time for dramatic challenging weather, reminding you of your size, and place.
This last month i have been learning to spin, which i completely love! I was fortunate enough to be given a spinning wheel by a lady who no longer spins, and to find enough sheeps wool in the surrounding hedges to get me off to an enthusiastic start...it's amazing, it drives you insane for the first couple of hours, seems impossible to do, and then, click, it's yours, you can spin (to a degree!! ):-) Since then a fortunate meeting with the local shephard (i found a sheep upside down in his field and ran for help!!!!) has meant that i now have a huge bag of black fleeces to spin...much better for me as, with all the will in the world, i've never been able to keep anything white for long!!! :-)
So many seeds have been sown this last month and the greenhouses are now packed to overflowing with trays of emerging seedlings; cottage garden flowers, herbs, wildflowers, vegetables, fruits, at least 100 varieties of different plants all crammed in protected from the crazy weather. The seedlings are starting to emerge inthe garden too; carrots, radishes, lettuces, peas, mangetout....all slowly but surely making there way up from the ground, braving the elements (and the rabbit attacks!!!) in order to provide us wth this season's food, thank you plants, thankyou so so much xxx
The rabbit attacks on the veg plot have been recurring...they love nothing more than our seedlings and young plants!! I've tried talking to them, determined that a bit of heart felt negotiation might do the trick....but it doesn't seem to have done!!! So I have resorted to good old-fashioned prevention and have been fencing around the plot to keep the out! In true farm on the hill style we've used mainly what was lying around (bought 1 roll of wire fencing and some nails); some old fencing planks picked up from freecycle as firewood last year (couldn't be burned because of the wood stain on them), left over wooden tree stakes from the woodland planting, left over tree guards (cut into corrugated planks!!!! - it works - proper blue peter moment!) some bits of left over netting, willow, bamboo canes, and anything else lying around!!! and we now have a fence!!!! :-)
The floor in the cafe is nearly finished...it seems to have taken much longer than we thought!! and the date for opening has been put back over and over, but i think we are really close now..about 4 or 5 more boards to find and fit and then we can open. We will be doing tea and cake like last year, but also offering evening meals prepared from food we have grown and wild food that grows around us..it should be great...and very tasty :-)
...and we have sown another patch of wildflowers; about an acre, joining together both the original and new woods using left over seed fromt he original meadow planting. The remainder of the seeds left over have ended up in many places, from gardens in the village, to an orchard in Alton, all the way up to a garden in Lancashire...spreading the flower love xxxx
the community allotment is doing well, so far the girls have planted potatoes, carrots, beetroot, parsnips, onions and brassicas...i've been asked to say that any help weeding the remainder of the plot would be greatly appreciated!!! (they're all at school with busy homework gcse schedules)..all food will be donated to the
and i think that's about it so......
best wishes from all of us here on the farm xxx