Sunday, 15 April 2012

Edible hedge here we come - stage 1

Well I have had a brilliant day today because I spent the majority of it in the garden doing some major renovating whilst the children had fun with their friends.  As part of my master plan for a big portion of the garden to become a forest garden, Dave bought a large selection of new hedge plants.  The hedge that is at the end of our garden and all the way down the LHS as you look down the garden is horrible.  It is overgrown, ugly, and too thick, doesn’t encourage wildlife and doesn’t produce fruits or anything else edible.  Also no one has any idea what it is!!!!  Luckily for us our neighbours who share the hedge hate it too and so they are happy for us to pull it up and replace it with edible hedge plants.  So today we began!!  And this picture shows how much hedge Dave removed and the newly planted (very small) hazel, june berries and blackthorn plants.

Whilst Dave was busy digging and planting I was chopping up the old hedge for kindling and logs or disposal.  The kids got involved, our neighbours got involved and we even had a visit from the neighbours at the bottom of the garden to investigate what we were doing.  They unfortunately didn’t want us to take down the hedge at the bottom of the garden so we have had to slightly change our plans.

We had some box hedge which we decided to keep but having planted over the kids hedge hole to get from our garden to next door we had to make them another way in so they weren't tempted to trample Dave's newly planted hedge.  Here is the new way in wonderfully modelled by my next door neighbour and cunningly positioned to match the climbing frame!!!  Obviously that was totally planned that way and not just lucky.

We have loads more to do but I am very happy with the start.  I now have one of the huge cardboard boxes that the hedge plants came in full of kindling ready for the winter and some great bigger firewood.  Even more fantastic was the fact that all the kids who dropped in during the day were asking about what we were doing so we could tell them that hedges can grow food,  be productive and encourage wildlife.  Hopefully in the coming years they will be able to see that for themselves and enjoy some of the harvest.  

Here's hoping that these little plants grow to be productive, attractive hedges and make a wonderful border to our ever growing forest garden.  And that we can pay the neighbours back for their help with fruits and nuts on their side too!!!
It was good fun and a brilliantly productive day.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Skydive, allotment and ransom

Yep - that is correct - I did a static line solo parachute jump last weekend for a laugh.  I did injure myself (see below) which is a laugh as I had more injuries from the bramble clearing on the allotment the previous week! Thought it was quite funny that clearing the allotment is more dangerous than jumping out of a plane so thought I had to share.
Anyway the allotment clearing went well so we had a bonfire there last night with some neighbours.  We had s'mores and I took pens and paper so that people could write their wishes and/or things that they wanted to forget on paper and burn them.  It was good fun with lots of laughter, running, giggling and acting round the bonfire (see the collage photo to see the fun.)
Toasting marshmallows and Indie in the trailer ready to be cycled home.
So today I thought I should get on with planting my ransom which arrived in the post from a lovely friend yesterday.  I had always planned that it would go under the trampoline but that meant that some clearing needed to be done (as can be seen from these photos.)

I got going though and the result can be seen below with a large stack of kindling ready for the woodburning stove so I am very pleased.  I also had very happy chickens who got all the cleared vegetation.  There is still more to do but I am very happy with the start.

It was very therapeutic sitting under that trampoline clearing wood and planting ransom.  Can highly recommend it!!
Happy Spring everyone