Thursday, September 19, 2013

Making Progress, Rabbit Problem.

The Straw Bale project is so far going well,
a lot of the rubble that was lying around has been incorporated into the floor base
The floor is laid, it looks good.
and the slate floor has now been laid, the door posts are also in place. There's still a bit of work to be done before the fun side can be started, maybe later next week we will be ready for the bales.
We have also decided to have a small window per wall, these windows will be for ornamental and light only, they wont be opening, the ornamental part will be my project, glass painting, I did this when we lived in Spain in the kitchen that we created, originally cattle housing, as is normal in Spain with old farm houses, the people lived above the animals. Ventilation was from arrow slots, these lent themselves beautifully to small windows just begging for crafted glass work.
We just hope the fine weather continues, I have memories of our Straw bale house building, starting work in November in Ireland is not a very good idea, especially that particular year as we had very heavy snow on St. Stephens day.
Last bottling this year.
All the bottling has now been done, pears from which I had a lot of juice left over, never wanting to waste anything I added some gooseberries and turned it into fruit jelly for our desert, it was yummy, far better than any commercial jelly.
The Sweet peas and Dahlias continue to bloom despite strong winds, and the Runner beans still keep producing,
First of the leeks, plenty more to come.
we have had the first helping of leeks, they also have done very well.
The wind removed what little fruit we had, two apples and a plum, at least there's enough to make an apple pie or maybe apple cake, the plum we will share, we also had two figs! Hoping for better next year.
Our spring bulb order is now placed, quite a big order as I wish to get everything planted once, and not keep adding to the garden. Our garden plan is now completed,  there will be no more room for more. Just to keep the flower garden maintained will be good, with permanent plantings.
If the vegetable garden does as well next year as this year we will be happy, although we had ordered three types of potatoes, somehow we only ended up with two, I'm not sure which earlies we had, they were nice but nothing exceptional, the main crop was excellent, Sarpo Mira, they have very good blight resistance, although they have been around for over ten years now they really have not caught on in Ireland, probably because they are not a 'flowery' potato which the Irish prefer, Golden Wonder and Records are the two which are grown in Ireland, we find them dull, and yes, very 'flowery' described in green grocers as 'Balls of Flour' , if I want that I will make some dumplings.
Yesterday we were going to mate our rabbit Flopsie, unfortunately on picking her up Simon discovered large lumps on her belly, we were certain that it was cancer, but to be certain we called the vet, she confirmed it. It appears that a doe should be matted every ninety days, we had not wanted to over breed her,  it was the worst thing we could have done, so Flopsie has now been put out of pain.
 It appears from further research and talking to our vet that this type of cancer is common in does which are not breed frequently, and rabbits kept as pets should be neutered, so we have learnt something from this unhappy event.
  Her replacement is a twelve week old New Zealand X Californian , she will be ready for breeding the end of December. Lets hope it all goes well for her.   


  1. If it's still the Ratte you missed, don't grieve too hard. Ours came out of the ground at a good weight but looking a bit warty and discoloured on the outside. Now that we are using them, all this staining hides brown, hard discoloured flesh under the skin and we are struggling to get any useful spuds for eating, probably throwing 2/3 of the crop away at the food-prep stage. Looking at my books this seems most likely to be early-stage blight. Our Foremost and Mira are good and clean. Definitely not going with Ratte next year.

  2. Was there no sign of blight on the leaves? I have never seen blight that has not affected the leaves first.

  3. Me and Jason are keenly the straw bale house progression!! The floor looks great. Sorry to hear about Flopsie, I had no idea that not breeding could cause cancer in rabbits. xxx

  4. The floor looks great. Poor old sad. You're right about Irish people liking the floury spuds. My Mother hates the Sarpos and she is a typical Irishwoman...taste wise anyway.I

  5. Yes we are please with the floor we inherited so much left over slate it would be a shame not to use it,we still have quite a bit so will probably use it for pathways.