Thursday, 17 August 2017

Clean quailhouse

quailhouse Aug 17

The quailhouse is cleaned out every three months or so. It had its latest clean on Monday. Quail droppings quickly become dry and dusty. The muck has gone into the manure bin which is now full. Anyone in the Sunniside area is welcome to take some natural fertiliser for their garden.

Apple branches for the goats

apple branches for goats Aug 17 (2)

A friend chopped down a couple of apple trees in his garden over the weekend. He let me have all the branches. A bit of a feast for the goats. After the leaves and bark were eaten, the branches were chopped for firewood. No waste!

apple branches for goats Aug 17 (1)

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Lots of logs

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (17)

The recent work to clear the pile of branches on the Whinnies resulted in lots of firewood which is now being stored to dry out. All we need is a heating system that uses them as fuel. Getting that done is still on the to-do list.

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (19)

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (24)

Is Georgina pregnant?

pregnant goat Aug 17

There is a possibility that Georgina, mother or grandmother of all our goats except for Pinkie, may be pregnant again and possibly even due in the next three weeks. She has been getting bigger for some time and I am no longer able to put that down to her being "gassy"! The father can only be Spotless who died in April, a couple of weeks after Georgina gave birth. If events turn out as we now expect, we clearly made a mistake leaving Spotless to roam freely with the nannies when they are due to give birth. I much prefer to give the nannies time to recover from a pregnancy. Fortunately, Georgina is in excellent condition. Watch this space for more news.

Rained off at Swalwell

Swalwell Fayre Aug 17 5

We set up our stall selling preserves at the Swalwell Community Fayre yesterday, just in time for the rain. Alas, the wet conditions were not helpful for jam sales but the two goats we took - Pinkie and Snow - proved to be popular with visitors as we sheltered under trees.

Swalwell Fayre Aug 17 3

Creating space

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (1)

On the Whinnies Community Garden, in the bottom end of one of the old allotments, was a huge pile of sticks, branches and tree trunks. It was a bit of a hindrance to get into our Farside allotment. Over the past week, I have been helping the volunteers to shred branches and chop logs. The end result is a large new space that can be used by the volunteers in the future, a heap of mulch and better access to our allotment.

Photos before (above) and after (below).

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (21)

And a few action shots:

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (9)

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (2)

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (16)

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (12)

shredding branches on Whinnies Aug 17 (3)

Friday, 11 August 2017

Rhubarb, apple and cherry jam

Rhubarb, apple and cherry jam Aug 17 (1)

Our huge surplus of rhubarb and cherries is being put to good use this morning. I am making rhubarb, apple and cherry jam. The cherries have been boiled and strained (life is too short to stone each one individually). The resulting liquid (1.25 litres) was added to the jam pan along with 2kg of chopped rhubarb and 2kg of chopped apples.

Boil the whole lot until everything is pulped and then add 4kg of sugar. Bring to setting point and them put it into hot, sterlised jars.

Rhubarb, apple and cherry jam Aug 17 (2)