Spring is in the air!!

The weather has been beautiful this past two weeks, lovely blue skies and sunny days. We are still in winter and traditionally this has been a very cold month but we’re getting a taste of things to come and work is starting on the summer garden again.

Roger has been getting all the berries sorted. He transplanted another row of raspberries this weekend so we now have 3 rows of 8 plants. He grows these up rows of wires with drip irrigation at the base, these still have to go in the latest row.Image

The blackberries have spread right down one side of the boundary fence so he removed the currants that were in front and transplanted to an area where he dug up a bit of what lawn remains. There are two red currant and two black – last year the birds got all the red so this year they will be covered in netting, that ain’t happening again!

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The garlic finally got planted and I have been busy weeding and tidying up the front gardens, the cranberries, strawberries and herbs. Hopefully we now have escape proofed the chook run properly. ย We now have 14 and I came home one day to find all of them in the winter garden eating our broccoli and brussell sprouts down to ground level. The past two weeks I have had to buy green vegetables and have not been happy about that. Which leads me to mention how we feel we have managed with our first year of storing enough food from summer to last through winter – how have we done? Well, darn good I think ๐Ÿ™‚ We still have quite a bit of some things left however have just run out of tomato pulp and paste though still have plenty dried ones left. ย We are having to buy potatoes, meals have needed alot more creativity to be based around what’s left but all in all we are pleased with how things have gone. However, it’s not going to be enough to last until new fruit is ready to process etc so next summer will need alot more work to get us through next year.

We do finally have drinkable wine, lots of red and it’s very drinkable! For our first effort we are very happy, should it be being drunk yet?…nope! but what the heck, if it’s drinkable it’s ready. I have been doing this and I can see it’s going to become something I want to try alot more of. A friend is brewing me up some vodka so I can make fruit liquers, something I have been wanting to try for ages.

Hubby has painted the first coat of the $22 glasshouse, he just needs to do the contrasting window trims. It’s already producing wee salad greens and baby spinach and we are about to start our tomatoes, peppers etc off here. He’s already collected enough for 3 walls of a bigger glasshouse for the bottom garden.

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Yesterday he rung and asked if I would like to come out to work with him for the morning. He was driving out to “the back of beyond” to mend fencing and thought I would like it. We are still experiencing aftershocks here and had had a pretty decent one through the night so my nerves have been on edge, I had a very serene 5 hours in the sunshine in a lovely little valley between hills, listening to bell birds and collecting gorse petals for wine, until I decided that was not going to be a happening thing. ย A necessary 10 litres of gorse petals means alot of ouching, I think I got 2!!

Anyway I took these, that dirt bank is the road we went down. My poor husband works hard, look at this fence he had to redo through swamp…. and he loves every bit of it ๐Ÿ™‚

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19 thoughts on “Spring is in the air!!

  1. Lovely greenhouse! And that fencing job sure impressed me, too! . . . and the berry bushes! Lucky you, heading for spring! Don’t envy you the quakes, though. Hope they are over soon.

    Since you are growing berries, etc., I thought you might like this link: http://acerecipe.com/recipes_food/all_network/13407/Bottomless-Brandied-Fruit-Crock.html

    My RN sister used to have this on the go in her pantry and it was so lovely spooned over ice cream or other desserts . . . I like it with either rum or brandy, but haven’t made it myself. Good thing I don’t have any just now; I’d be head-down in the crock about now . . . ๐Ÿ˜‰ ~ Linne

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    • Ooooh, yum, brandied berries!!! That sounds soooo good Linne, I will have to remember this when they start.

      Yeah, I look at a job like his fencing one and think “Oh my God, he has to do that!!?” look at him and he rearing to go. I prefer gardening with a hand trowel sorta work lol

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  2. I love your greenhouse too and the price was perfect. I am like your husband, if there’s a job outside I will do anything you ask of me but please don’t ask me to work inside.:-) Lovely pictures, and I’m glad your aftershocks are coming less frequently.

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  3. RT says:

    “how we feel we have managed with our first year of storing enough food from summer to last through winter โ€“ how have we done? Well, darn good I think” …

    I am Very Impressed with your success, too. What a great accomplishment!

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  4. PHEW! It’s NOT too late to plant out my garlic ;). I have some I planted ages ago and a bag full that I really REALLY should get into the ground. Our studies have had me chained to the PC chair and away from the (tantalisingly close) internet for over a week now. I cringed when I opened my cram packed RSS Feed Reader ;). Catching up now and am really enjoying your varied and interesting posts I missed. LOVE that glasshouse…still thinking about import export when it comes to Roger ;). Might give us the motivation we need to get out into the garden again. You have discovered the “delights” of chooks eh? They scratch EVERYTHING here. They remove every shred of mulch I put around plants, they scratch it all over the driveway and make it look like something invaded Poland. “BAD CHOOKS!” and besides that, they are off down in the area of the garden that we NEVER visit because it is fecund with blackberries and have all made their nests in the middle of them…I am starting to put chooks into the too hard basket and we might need a new freezer to store all of the new protein sources that our hens are going to emerge triumphant with over the next month :(. That fence is terrifying! What a gorgeous view you have around your area ๐Ÿ™‚

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    • It is a lovely area, he works only a few minutes from home.
      Yes, chooks can be hard work! Honestly, their run looks like Fort Knox and some are still getting out, their fence is 7 foot high and all have their wings clipped, no holes anywhere….?! They can do some damage that’s for sure.
      I love our glasshouse too, it’s pretty cool – he’s a clever lad ๐Ÿ™‚

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      • We had 5 young pullets that kept getting out of our own personal fort knox. The fence was 3 metres high!!! We kept seeing the little buggers outside the enclosure and it took us 5 days of solid watching (one of us sitting on a chair and watching them for hours on end!) before we worked out that they were actually tunnelling out! They had found a small bit of netting under a rock that they were able to squeeze out of and were making a mass escape. I had to admire their chutzpah at that because it was like digging your way out of fort knox and we were amazed that a chook, let alone 5 of them, would want to squeeze out under rocks etc. NEVER underestimate chooks folks, they might be dumb clucks but they are full of animal cunning…I know they are…ours are all nesting in a HUGE tangle of blackberries…right in the very middle where someone is going to have to lay waste to the blackberries before they get the eggs sigh…

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  5. Hi Fellow Kiwi! I’m now well settled in Oz, retired and have bought my little cottage in the country, no land to speak of but enough to potter. Am trying as best I can to walk lightly on the earth (solar power and hws, compost and all that) but am (so far) HOPELESS at growing veg. I will still persevere though, in between other passion of wildlife care and community theatre. Love your blog, find it inspiring! Cheers, Jenny.

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    • Well hi there ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ Your life sounds pretty neat to me! We would love solar power but it’s terribly expensive, unaffordable for most here, it’s a major peeve for me that governments won’t subsidise. I am pleased you find my blog inspiring, thank you, that’s what I aim for. When I started it I had no idea about blogging and intended it as a photo journal for ourselves (to keep ourselves on track more than anything!), I got such a surprise when people started following it lol. Good luck with your veges in the future and your wildlife care, a passionate animal lover here and that must be very rewarding ๐Ÿ™‚

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