June 2007RSS feed

Accommodation crisis looming

Sunday 3 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 9:07pm in Poultry 3 comments Comments closed

I think I have an accommodation crisis looming. No, Dan hasn't given me my marching orders!

We have two poultry arks - a big one and a little one - and an extension run. The nine layers and Hobbes are in the big ark and the three big cheeps (now nearly six weeks old) live in the little ark with the extension run. This is all fine and dandy but the little cheeps, now almost two weeks old, are going outside, so the big cheeps only have the ark, while the little cheeps have the extension run and the cat carry case. The wee cheeps come in at night and stay in the puppy cage. Hope you're following all this - the wee cheeps don't know if they are chickens, cats or puppies!

Busy gardening weekend

Sunday 3 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 9:17pm in Gardening 5 comments Comments closed

We've had a busy weekend in the garden. Dan's done loads of grass cutting; thinned the swede; dug out the asparagus, since neither of us like it much; trimmed some rampant plants - hydrangea, ivy and comfrey. I've planted bedding plants, weeded endlessly; worried the brassicas (which need planted out or potted on but certainly need something.) It doesn't look like much written down, but seemed like loads when we were doing it!

We've also been working on the "three sisters" bed. Dan's dad is constructing a fence round the bed and the patio - hopefully, it will be finished tomorrow. Mainly, it's to keep the hens out. Not only do I get fed up scraping hen poo off the table and bench, it also allows us to use the patio for outdoor tomatoes, cucumber and herbs, without the hens feasting on them. The "three sisters" bed now has two courgettes, two marrows, runner beans and sweetcorn in. The squashes and pumpkins are in the greenhouse until the last frost is passed (how do you know?). We'll see how it goes - should look nice, anyway.

Smokey's bath

Thursday 7 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 8:46pm in Equines 3 comments Comments closed

Smokey's just had a wee bath. It wasn't a big bath - he was kind of topped and tailed, so he's white at both ends with a dull brown bit in the middle. He's awful itchy. I had hoped the immunotherapy had worked, and early in the season it looked like it had, but he's awful itchy now. His mane is thin in one place and the top of his tail is rubbed. He's also rubbed his face.

So tonight he had his face, mane and tail washed with insect repellant shampoo, and loads of soothing lotion applied. I don't know whether to put a fly mask on him - I suspect it's too late and sometimes the seams cause more rubbing than they prevent.


Friday 8 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 7:48pm in Anything goes Comments closed

For those not in the know, SEERAD is the Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department. South of the border, it's DeFRA.

As I work in local government, I am well aware of our shortcomings.I am also well aware of central government's i.e. said Scottish Executive drive to "modernise government" and make evertyhing electronic.

I was rather surprised then when I phoned our local Animal Health Office in Perth for some advice about sheep tagging. The duty officer was not available, so I asked the person on the phone is she had an email address. I really didn't want to get into a series of missed telephone calls and since I wasn't going to around at my desk for long periods of time, I thought "email"."Yes", I was told "she has an email address, but we're not allowed to give it out."

Stirling Show tomorrow

Friday 8 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 7:55pm in Agriculture Comments closed

Stirling Show's on tomorrow. It's not very well publicesed - I didn't see it in the Scottish Farmer today and there's nothing on the web that I can see either.

Anyway, I THINK it's beside the A907 between Tullibody and Manor Powis - it's had so many sites in the last few years, I can't keep up. There will be all the usual livestock classes, horses, ponies, dog show etc etc.

I think the weather forecast is good, so if you're at a loose end, go along. Just don't say I sent you!

It's also Stirling Farmers' Market in town, so two outings for the price of one.

Stirling Show 9th June 2007

Sunday 10 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 9:28pm in Agriculture 4 comments Comments closed

Lorna and I paid a visit to Stirling Show on Saturday. The weather was pleasant, so we had icecream and looked at all the exhibits, including the vintage tractors, Clydesdale horses, beef cattle and sheep. There were lots of horse classes, and a few competitors that I knew from my previous livery yard, so it was nice to catch up with them.

I almost bought two rain hats and a deerskin, but the stallholder didn't take either credit or debit cards, which I found a bit bizarre in this day and age.

Second Airborne Division

Monday 11 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 6:00pm in Poultry 3 comments Comments closed

The second batch of cheeps are growing up fast. They're now out all day, but come in at night. They don't have the lamp on now - but our spare room is quite warm!

They are quite obliging at getting into the cat basket to come in at night - and they zoom out of the box into their "bedroom", which has lead to them being called the "Second Airborne Division". You can see them here in action.

The breakfast patio

Monday 11 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 8:45pm in Gardening 2 comments Comments closed

The fence round the breakfast patio is now complete. It's on the east side of the house and gets the morning sun, and is awfully nice to take breakfast on, hence the name.

Here, I keep my herbs, a lovely lilac bush and, for now at least, some pots of lavender (Hidcote). It's also home to tomatoes and cucumber, and has the "three sisters bed" to one side. The runner beans are off and running (pardon the pun) and the courgettes, marrows and sweetcorn all seem fine, although some of the sweetcorn will get a feed of comfrey tomorrow. I'm waiting for the last frost before I put out the squashes and pumpkins!

Courtyard garden

Monday 11 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 8:50pm in Gardening 2 comments Comments closed

The courtyard garden has been an ongoing project for a couple of years (see entries from March 2005 and May 2006, Dan). It's an area to the west of the house that was slabbed but got a bit overgrown. I decided to turn it into a secluded courtyard garden, with a green and white theme. I lifted three areas of slabs to create flower beds.

The garden delivers!

Monday 25 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 8:16pm in Growing 2 comments Comments closed

Hip hooray! This weekend, we've had new potatoes, peas, broad beans, gooseberries and raspberries from the garden. Oh, it was lovely.

The goosebarries have gone mad - we've NEVER had a crop like this before. We did manure the bed this year, so that's probably what it was but it's a bumper crop and huge berries, to boot. Lorna and I finished the gooseberry crumble tonight for tea.

We had fresh raspberries on our Bran Flakes this morning, too. What luxury!

We've got wee, tiny courgettes and the tomatoes are starting to fruit - so small I needed Claire to point them out to me!! Dan got the squashes and pumpkins out yesterday, into the three sisters bed (in the rain). It's sunny today but blowing a gale and it's not very warm. Still, it keeps the midges away!

RHS in the rain!

Monday 25 June, 2007

by Rosemary at 8:22pm in Agriculture Comments closed

Dan and I had a day at the Royal Highland Show on Saturday. It was wet, but OK if you were prepared, as we were. Sun hats weren't selling well, but waterproofs were. I predicted at 9am, as the rain teemed down, that the sun would be out by lunchtime. It came out at 2pm - so I wasn't far wrong. As we left at back of 5, the heavens opened again though.

The poultry marquee was abit disappointing. There was no poultry equipment for sale and nothing really to promote smallscale poultry keeping. Although tere were some interesting birds, there was almost no information about them, not even the breed. So for the inetersted lay person, it was a bit of a letdown (IMHO).

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