Monday, 2 September 2013

Surprise! Surprise!

   We had a surprise at Watermeadows. One of our ewes gave birth. That was not expected at all! We also have had three chicks hatch out another surprise arrival.
Mother ewe and lamb August 2013
   In the garden the battle against the weeds continue. I am now picking running beans along side the haricot vert and I fear it will not be long and we will not be able to eat them quickly enough! The freezer is calling. There are lots of tomatoes ripening so it will be out with roasting tray to make peseta. Since writing that sentence the tomatoes are being picked by the seed tray full! 

   Other produce is being picked/cut on a regular basis and in increasing amounts. Cucumbers have been a success again this year (La Diva outside, Watouma in the poly tunnel). We are overwhelmed again with the summer squash, patty pan, despite planting out less plants. Lots of courgettes but I think about the right number of plants (5). A very good crop of haricot vert with too many to consume! A couple of melons have finally ripened but it is proving hard to determine when they are ripe! Another success this year has been aubergines. A poor start but the plants have produced a good number of aubergines. Just starting to harvest sweet peppers again they had a poor start and I thought that the crop would be poor. The weather has cooperated and there is now a good crop. Will the Champion of England peas produce? They are looking good but is there time for them to produce? The plum tree in the house garden has suffered from over producing and has several broken branches. There are lots of plums which are now ready to pick. I believe they are damsons. 
   I am trying to save seed and have collected moss curled parsley seed to add to my broad bean seed. I will try to save seed from the haricots and very probably others.   
 Our first round of eleven table chickens have been processed and the freezer is well stocked with chicken. The grass refuses to stop growing and once more "The Beast" has been in use. I managed not to break it this time though!
   I started to write this entry on the 15th August. It is now the 1st September. In those two weeks the weather has changed. The mornings are now cool (6 - 8C or less) with day time temperatures more in the lower 20's. Autumn/winter crops planted in hot sunshine are now picking up and growing well. The Marie Bois strawberries are in flower and producing another crop of strawberries. I just love this variety. 
   More new arrivals at Watermeadows. Another twelve table chickens and eight "point of lay" chickens. Hopefully we will re-establish our egg laying flock. A good sign is that the new hens are already laying, some what small, eggs.

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