Thursday 29 February 2024

Rhubarb shoots


Another mild winter is just about behind us and some of our crops are now springing into action. Rhubarb shoots are starting to appear.

Sunday 25 February 2024

First duck egg of the year


Nice surprise for me this morning when I arrived at the duck run: an egg. It's the first of the year. Sadly, it was cracked. It will end up in an omelette soon.

Roast chicken


We dispatched 4 of our surplus cockerels recently. The biggest bird was roasted, making a superb Sunday dinner for us. We have another 6 cockerels which were hatched in the autumn so are not yet fully grown. They will be fattened up over the coming weeks. The rest of the birds slaughtered recently were made into pies.

Saturday 24 February 2024

Bamboo eating goats


We are keeping our two billy goats (Ant and Dec) and two of our young nannies (Snow White and Star) separate from our herd for the time being. Current home for them is our Nearside allotment. I give them three sacks of hay a day which I bring from our farm. Alas, yesterday I forgot to bring back the hay. The goats therefore got bamboo instead. Fortunately, this is one of the winter greens that the goats love.

Free fuel


Yesterday, the energy regulator here in the UK announced that the cap on household bills will be reduced by about £200 on average per household per year. It still means that average household energy bills will be about £1800 a year. The costs we pay are much lower. We have a woodfired stove which we use to heat our house and the fuel is free. We gather up dead branches from our farm or chop them off our trees and hedges. The fuel is sustainable as well, as is the electricity we generate from our solar panels. We remain plugged into the electricity and gas grids however. And that means we have to pay the rip off standing charges.

Wednesday 21 February 2024

Ricotta cheese flans


We still have a freezer full of ricotta cheese so I used some of it to make 6 flans. They are being used for lunch and dinner this week although we may freeze some (something I am reluctant to do as we need the freezer space for other things).

Wednesday 7 February 2024

Avoid toxic leaves


Some garden plants, such as rhododendron, are very toxic to goats and sheep. If you are composting them, make sure they are no where near any goats or sheep. In this video we were given 20 sacks of leaves but some of them were toxic. We put the sacks of leaves onto our Farside allotment as we keep no livestock there. The leaves will be left in their sacks for a year to rot down.