Sunday, 29 March 2009

Pesky Frost...

Oh dear, last night we had a bit of an unexpected and hard frost. Our courgettes didn't like it at all - not even in the polytunnel. I fear some of them may have had it, I've brought them in for a bit of tlc, but I think some of them may be past that.

The straggly tomatoes of a couple of weeks ago are really bad! Have planted a shed load more seeds, but these haven't started coming up yet - hope they make an appearance soon or their care routine might be a bit too demanding for our house-sitters!

On a brighter note, the chillis and some runner beans are coming along nicely, and the bean and strawberry bed looks ace, Tom's special compost doing the trick nicely! Dad stuck some potatoes out in the field last week - I'm wondering what we will come home to in a few weeks though!

Monday, 23 March 2009

Carmarthenshire Sheep Farmers ...

Well this is what they get up to just over the border .... click here, and its well worth a look!

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Spring has sprung at Clun Farm

Well the last week has truly been a blast of beautiful spring. I heard the first cuckoo a couple of days ago, as I remember last year he sang his heart out for weeks on end, and quickly became quite irritating! Given that we moved in in May means we could be in for the long haul this year...

All sorts of interesting and lovely flowers are bursting open, and with the sun going down later and later we are managing to get some jobs done in the evenings and beginning to retackle the field. The weeding has started ... as has the accompanying backache!

There is just so much to get done, and not enough time to do it. Still you have to marvel at the lovely things that despite being neglected for year are popping up all over the place...

Thursday, 19 March 2009

The Sherman Solution

Introducing the Sherman Soil Sieve .... the speedy way to work your way through 6 tonnes of soil. An ingenious contraption I'm sure you will agree, skillfully assembled out of "stuff" we had laying around.

Check out the wheelbarrow too! Rhys isn't too keen on the colour but I think its the best wheelbarrow I've ever seen. As he got it for me he can't really complain!

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

John's birthday party

What a bunch of miscreants!
Paintballing and fondue ... have a good one fella!

The 6 tonne problem

The polytunnel is starting to look interesting again. I say starting because we started work on the raised beds a couple of weeks ago. Using old pallets we have cobbled them together into something that that we think looks pretty good, and even more importantly will work pretty well too.

Being quite large and sitting on a double layer of weedproof membrane meant we needed a pretty large amount of stuff to fill them with. Not being short of manure thanks to Tom and his four legged friends down the road was a good start but sourcing topsoil proved difficult - the internet was throwing up suppliers charging £100 a tonne!

Luckily the company we have been using for skips, Greenacres Skip Hire, had a load so we had 6 tonnes delivered...

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Dad laughed ...

So mum and dad visited on friday, bringing a huge supply of grow bags and compost (thanks!). He took one look at the tomato seedlings and burst out laughing, suggesting they looked like something you might see growing on stage around christmas time! So I've started some new ones. I'll keep the others going but I think he's probably right they will be a bit on the leggy side! Apparently airing cupboards not required for seed germination afterall!

The chillis have started poking through though, so lesson learnt from the tomatoes - after checking them everyday the minute any of them started showing signs of life they were wisked from their very warm spot and put on the windowsill instead. I'm hoping they will grow a big chunkier than their 1st lot of tomato friends.

Friday, 6 March 2009

Yeah we've got tomatoes ....

well little tiny scraggly shoots anyway! I only planted them at the weekend I checked them on Tuesday and there was nothing, didn't look on wednesday and then on thursday they looked like this....

I'm hoping they'll beef up a bit in the next week!

Still no sign of chilli shoots yet. Will keep you posted.

Thursday, 5 March 2009

The story so far...

I really couldn't say where the last 10 months have gone - other than in a blur! So to bring you up to speed here is a quick resume of our life at Clun so far:

In May we moved in and quickly got to work ripping out the kitchen - what we hadn't thought about is how hard it is to live without one, even in the short term! By August we had laid a new slate floor and installed all the units, for a fully functioning and lovely kitchen!

Needless to say with a project of this magnitude, we couldn't just focus on one thing so at the same time we juggled work in the garden; copious amounts of weeding, our first attempts at growing our own veg and enormous amounts of grass cutting! Dad's moving in present to us was a number of tomato and runner bean plants and grow bags which quickly made progress in the poly tunnel - keeping us stocked rights through the summer.

Rhys made a start on the compost bays, and we began harvesting the currants and raspberries from the field, and stocking the freezer. Delicious!

Then we got visited by a barn owl with a bust wing, after several hours trying to catch it our very helpful neighbour got a hand to him and the next day he went off to a local bird of prey sanctuary to try an fix his dislocated elbow joint.

Back in the house for Autumn, the bedrooms got a full remodel with new walls, wiring, plastering, decorating and carpets. We just have a few little finishing bits to do up there before we get drawn outside once more, hopefully to enjoy a glorious summer! And that's where we are now, written down it doesn't look like we've got very far but for those of you in the know its been eventful...

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

About the name....

Clun means Meadow in Welsh when relating to place names, and for those not in the know and slightly confused by the title of this blog the house is pronounced cl-ee-n

U as the 'i' in pitaWelsh words: ganu (ganee); cu (key); Cymru (Kumree); tu (tee); un (een)

Ironically, whichever way you look at it, the place did not live up to its name. When we moved in last May the field was not meadow and the house was not clean! But more on that to follow ...