Settling into Autumn

We are well and truly hitting Autumn. We have had the fire going quite a bit, the nights and mornings are chilly, the garden is on it’s very last legs. Just in time for fellow blogger Anthony and his family (from Australia) to visit tomorrow, the garden has exhausted itself!! But we are very excited and looking forward to meeting them 🙂

Either dead or dying

Image

Image

Image

When your garden looks like this on a very large scale there are several reactions all at once. Glee for one, lol. Things will slow down now and we can get to enjoy some other aspects of life and hopefully paint our lounge! Sorrow because we do love summer and horror, because that’s one grizzly mess to clean up!

But we do have sunflowers and we are still waiting on fruit and pumpkins to ripen.Image

There is still plenty to preserve. I have continued buying sauce tomatoes for pulping, cooking till concentrated and freezing. I did 7 jars of pickled garlic.

Image

A lovely fellow blogger 🙂 sent me a link one day for an easy way to peel garlic that was on You Tube. It was bashing it to break up then putting in 2 stainless steel bowls and shaking it rapidly for 5 minutes. If anyone ever tries this and gets it to work please let me know HOW? because it didn’t work for us!

Still pickling beetroot

Image

Roger picked me some peaches to do…..Bless him she says, between gritted teeth 🙂

Image

Capsicums are still coming and being frozen, as is, for stuffing with whatever over winter

Image

We have plans now for our marrows. I got given a recipe by a friend for Marrow Rum (Fran?)

You take the top off, de-seed it, and fill it with good brown sugar and let it ferment for 2 months in a cool place. Apparently it makes very good booze! I hate rum but am keen to try it, I am sure we will find takers for it.

Image

A large batch of apple sauce was made and frozen and another batch of cider vinegar is on the go.Image

You could be mistaken for thinking we either a) had a white telly-tubby call in or b) we were visited by martians – Roger’s first visit on the bees 🙂

.Image

He is really enjoying them and we are both becoming quite fascinated as we read more about their community living, work, and lives.

Image

Our kitchen window is the most used window in our house. Roger will often appear at it, grin, tell my to hold out my hand and pass me the first fig, strawberry, tomato…bird’s nests he has found etc. All sorts come through that window, or get passed out of it, often a beer or a fresh baked something. Twice in one week he bought these to show me 🙂Image

Image

AND FINALLY!! A source of great excitement arrived.

Image

Last year I inherited by Mum’s new oven when she went into a rest home. A year later it’s arrived via my sister and hubby on holiday. It was a 3.5 hour ferry trip and over an hours drive away but was bound to get here sooner or later. The decrepid old thing we had was near it’s last legs, half the elements no longer worked and the racks caved in occasionally. You have no idea how welcomed this appliance was!!! It will make preserving and drying a whole lot easier that’s for sure.

Many of you are heading into Spring, I wish you a long and productive two seasons!!

Advertisements

Other residents of the garden :)

Image

Hedgehogs used to be nocturnal creatures but we see them alot now during the day, it is though now there are few wild predators to stay away from that they are now adapting to daylight hours. This little man survived a terrible incident a few weeks back – hubby went down to the garden one morning and found him swimming in the bath of seaweed water we have there….he had climbed up onto the compost heap next to it (now removed!) and Roger found him worn out and very cold. He rinsed him off and bought him inside where he sat in front of a fan heater sneezing for a couple of hours 🙂 Once he had eaten and had recovered he was put down under the trees by the chook run.

Twice a day when we feed the chooks he comes out to eat with them. He lets Roger pick him up, doesn’t roll himself into a ball or show any fear, and appears to be very content living with the chooks…there are places he could get in and out but he stays.

We had relations from Australia staying last week who had two wee kids, one a four year old girl. They don’t get them there so she very much enjoyed seeing a different one sitting in the front garden one night eating his way through a large dog biscuit.

IMG_3071

We have a resident blackbird family. We think it is the same parents who every year nest in the macrocarpa hedge opposite our lounge windows. For four years we have been watching them go in and out of the hedge, we hear the male bird singing at the top of his voice for weeks when they are hatched and then watch as the babies eventually come down into the garden. They are now coming into the chook run when we feed the chickens as well, their parents get the food then feed it to the babies who are almost as big as them.IMG_3065

IMG_3064

IMG_3060

I had a lovely experience last weekend when a homing pigeon came and sat in the garden with me for a couple of hours. It was a really hot day and he flew down beside me to drink from a puddle left by the hose.  I tried to tempt him to stay by feeding him chicken pellets and wild bird seed and he was content to follow me around the garden but Syd, our big black dog, frightened him away barking at him. I soooo wanted to be able to keep him – I dearly would like some doves but hubby does not, a stray homing pigeon would have done nicely!