Bridget

Posts Tagged ‘farmyard manure’

As September Ends…

In Gardening, Off the beaten track. on September 28, 2011 at 10:00 am

At last the Hollyhock decides to bloom. Worth waiting for though. I got three of these as a gift last year but alas two were killed in last Winter’s hard frosts. I think it’s fab!

It is growing beneath this Twisted Willow which I grew from a cutting. During the recent winds I tied it to the tree which saved it from being destroyed.

In the polytunnel Salvia Hotlips has decided to flower again. Pretty!

Whilst weeding a flower bed the other day I cam across this Frog. Look at the size of the tum! I wonder if they fill up with food before hibernation or have they eggs already formed in there for next Spring? Beautiful colours! I put her by the pond in the polytunnel. She promptly jumped in and went to the bottom so I presume she will hibernate there  for the Winter.

Cabbage plants have been planted out in the veg garden. These are Savoy, a crinkled leaf variety which is Winter hardy. These will mature next Spring. A barrowload of farmyard manure went into this bed as it is continously planted year round. Onions grew here in the Summer. These are now drying for use throughout the Winter.

 Andy has been building a new shed onto the chalet, it will be used as a fuel and animal feed store. Here he is putting on the tin roof. Shortly after he finished the heaven’s opened and torrential rain fell. Good timing on that one!

And finally a pic of this lovely little church which is opposite the gates to Killegar where we attended the Mushroom Festival on Sunday. Does’nt it look lovely amongst the trees! It is still in regular use.

Production and growth @ Prospect Cottage.

In Gardening, sustainable living on April 18, 2011 at 8:02 am

3 Cauliflowers ready for harvesting.

There has been incredible growth in the last week. We were away from Tuesday to Saturday but it felt more like 2 weeks from the growth spurt that occured. Cauliflower to cook, cauliflower to freeze and more to come.

Tomato plants.

The Tomatoes are ready for planting out. I’m sure they grew a few inches last week! These will be planted in the small tunnel later in the week. They will be fed with farmyard manure, dug in under each plant at planting time, later when the first trusses have set they will get a weekly feed of a nettle and comfrey liquid fertiliser which we make ourselves. The farmyard manure as well as feeding the plant also helps to retain moisture.

Early Potatoes.

The Potatoes planted in sacks on St. Patrick’s Day have come on well. Today I will top up with more compost to encourage more Potatoes to form on the stems.

Damson in flower.

Yippee, at long last the Damson is flowering. I’m really pleased about this as I grew this tree from a stone of a wild Damson which grows locally. That was about 6 years ago, so, yes, patience does pay off. Much more gratifying than buying a tree from the garden centre ready to go.

Mrs. Perry in bloom!

This little tree I bought 2 years ago, it was just a whip. It is called Mrs Perry and I bought it on a visit to Irish Seed Savers in Clare. It is a self-rooter so I might take some cuttings from it in the Autumn. The fruit is dual-purpose and ripens in September, apples said to be very juicy and the tree is an abundant cropper.

Rhubarb is a fruit @ Prospect Cottage!

In Cooking, Gardening, sustainable living on April 11, 2011 at 7:31 am

This little Saxifrage has just come into flower, the blooms are small but so numerous they make a big impact. The Saxifrages are a great choice for a difficult area. This one is growing under a tree on dry, stony ground. They can become over invasive but easy enough to pull out what you don’t want.

Rhubarb, the first welcome fruit of the season is classified as a vegetable in all gardening books. To me it will always be a fruit, usable in jams, chutneys, cakes and crumbles or just plain stewed. ITS A FRUIT! Nothing was harvested from these plants last year, they were planted the previous year and left to develop. We can reap the reward this year. Mulched well with farmyard manure in the Winter they have produced a great healthy looking crop of thick chunky sticks. Rhubarb contains vitamins A and C plus calcium and iron. The leaves are poisonous but can be composted. A natural insecticide can be made by boiling the leaves for about 30 minutes then using the resulting brew against aphids and other pests. 1 and a half kgs of Rhubarb leaves to 3 and a half litres of water.

In the polytunnel yesterday morning, before it got too hot, I pricked out the Cabbages into modules. They will be kept in these until the roots fill the spaces then planted into the earth. By then they will be a good size and less likely to be damaged by slugs!