Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Winter Wednesday #2

There is nothing that sums up winter more at the cottage than the bare branches of the giant (weedy) poplar, and the growing patches of lichen on the 70 year old slate roof.

This part of the roof and weatherboarding is showing its age, but in such a charming wintery way!  

Head over to Hazel's for more Winter Wednesday thoughts...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Winter Wednesday #1

Winter at the cottage means lots of wood chopping!
With only a small wood burning heater to keep us warm axeman's skills are essential!
Thank goodness Joel and Ollie are experts.

Pop over to Hazel's to see what else is going on this Winter Wednesday.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Veggie Garden Update

Winter hadn't really set in here at the cottage until today. Hail, icy wind, rain and gloomy skies. Not so conducive to veggie growing, but things are still growing in the patch, albeit slowly!

I have had a lot of trouble with snails and slugs eating the seedlings and my transplanted seedlings often don't make it. I'm wary of baiting the snails and have gone with beer traps, which seems to have been OK so far...

The broad beans I planted way back in April are coming along nicely. I planted a secessionial crop a week or so ago which is just germinating now. The broad beans haven't been bothered by the snails and nor has the resident possum had a go. Fingers crossed it stays that way!

Mix of sad peas.
The peas have had a terrible time fighting with and losing against Mr possum and the snails love them too. ARRGH!! I have planted more seeds and constructed a hefty yet flimsy barrier around them, in the hope that when Mr Possum tries to climb in, he will be freaked out by the unstable footing and forget about his pea eating urges.  hmm. Wish me luck!

In order to brighten my spirits, I went to the nursery and bought a few punnets of seedlings to add some green to the veggie garden. Some dwarf Broccoli and Wombok. I haven't had a good winter planting season this year, and I hope these babies will make up for it.

Another frustration has been the lack of germinating Sweet Peas. Has anyone else had this problem? I have soaked the seeds before hand and others I have not just to compare and out of the almost 20 that I planted I have had 4 germinate, 2 of which the snails ate to the ground! These too I have supplemented with a punnet from the nursery. I can't go through Spring without Sweet Peas! Does anyone have any growing tips?

 Surprisingly the Elm next door still has its leaves. It is such a huge tree that it suckers everywhere in the garden. I have suckers in the veggie garden which is nearly 20 metres away! We even have suckers coming through the floor in the laundry (it is a brick floor) but gosh those little suckers are tough!!
I thought this little shot of the house was pretty. The house is so ramshackled looking and I never really noticed!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Flower Garden AKA Alcatraz

My lovely fluffy bottomed girls have thoroughly enjoyed having free range of the garden these last few months and have even regularly enjoyed jaunts in the veggie garden! As well as this, they have done their best to thwart my efforts to create a flower garden, scratching huge sections of the mulch away and digging up precious little seedlings and EATING THE SEEDS!  That's a chicken no no girls!

So, finally, with the assistance of my handy man Joel, we constructed a chicken, rabbit (and human) proof fence!

I know its not the most attractive of fences, but It does the job and I'd like to think its temporary. At least I hope so. Somehow I cant imagine having a flower garden and free range chickens...

But, so far its proven to be quite the effective animal barrier! 

Here's Julia and Dumpling, coming to check out their favorite scratching ground.
Hmm, whats this new silver thing?

Well it certainly doesn't taste like yummy worms!
Juila couldn't care less because she has a new secret hang out.

Yes, that's her in the neighbours yard! Whoops! I might have to donate some eggs as a peace offering! The fallen Elm leaves are a wonderful haven of strange prawn like insects and sluggy things and now that they have worked out how great it is, they pretty spend most of their time there!

Dumpling, Julia and Melanie, scratching up the side passage
as viewed from the top of the stairs!
The side area is still a work in progress and pretty much everything I plant gets eaten by snails. Plus, the soil is very compacted and I haven't invested the time in preparing the soil before I plant... I am my own worst gardening enemy!

And now Ollie wants in on the chicken scratching action!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

And the winner is...

Drum roll please!

I did it the old fashioned paper way, I hope no one minds!
Joel had the honour of choosing randomly from the bowl...

Congratulations Mrs B!!! Please send me an email, to discuss postage for the seeds.
(pcouyant (at) gmail (dot) com)

I hope everyone is having a great weekend. I'll be back to regular programming soon folks!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

First day of winter

This was the view through the bedroom window this morning:

Hello Winter! Can you please not leave ice on my car in the morning please? I like to have at least some feeling in my hands!

Check out Hazel's Winter Wednesday Posts!
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