Sunday, June 26, 2016

Our quail

We have 3 of these quail, modest, sensitive little things that they are. We don't know how long they will last in the wilds of my garden, but they've got the opportunity to prove themselves more resilient than they seem. They remind me of kakapo.

Old pump and bellows

On the old farm we visited yesterday, these remnants of a bygone era caught my eye. The bellows work perfectly, when you pull on the long lever, and the air blown by them hisses encouragingly, from a blacksmith's point of view (I imagine). The pump hung on the exterior wall and I've no reason to think it wouldn't work also, once reconnected and primed. There were rusting horseshoes arranged along a section of frame inside of the smithy, and straw-stuffed horse collars hanging from pegs, in need of dubbining or neat's-foot oiling or what ever treatment was used to keep them soft and supple. The roof, however, was not full-filling its role, nor were sections of the walls. I liked it the way we found it and wouldn't like to see the gear moved to a museum for storage, as is the usual cry. It's the kind of building I'd have liked to spend a day in, finding and keeping stuff from previous times, but my interests have changed now and unless it's a living plant, I'm happy to leave it in situ for someone else to enjoy. 


We should be eating from our garden, said my wife, and avoiding the supermarket as if it harboured the plague!  And she was right. Tonight, it's Jerusalem artichoke and mashua soup!
That should give her pause for thought :-)
(I've taken the liberty of adding a couple of cloves of garlic, a quarter of pumpkin for colour, and a not-grown-in-Southland kumara, along with salt and stock from elsewhere, but essentially, it's tubers from the garden tonight!).

Allan's apple, Suzie's elder

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Sunny, frosty morning

I've been making cider and walking about on the crunchy ground. The recycling bin was frosted and the brugmansia's done. The kitchen's lovely and warm though and the first batch of cider tasted great. The apples I pressed last weekend now fill the demijohns and a new round of bubbling is underway.
Found a lovely fungi also.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Green Party conference at Lincoln this weekend

"Lincoln green is the colour of dyed woollen cloth associated with Robin Hood and his merry men in Sherwood Forest".

Friday, June 3, 2016


It's my word of the day and a very interesting verb indeed. We talked about chelation at length at last night's organic growing class. Knowing about chelation radically changes the way a gardener/farmer acts with regard the soil he/she tends, imho.