Saturday, August 2, 2014

Jungle warfare.

Venturing into the tunnel today I felt as though I should be armed with a machete, it is a total jungle.
Polytunnel Jungle (very productive)
Tree Spinach which had self seeded is over eight feet tall, it is supposed to grow to a metre. Cucumbers which had been allocated one bed have taken over two and are heading for the third one. Physalis  ( Cape Gooseberry) are making a bid for freedom through the door, ditto the Tomato plants at the other end of the tunnel. Amid all this chaos are Strawberries, now having a second flush of bloom, French Beans, Mangetout Peas, Cucumbers and lots of Tomatoes all ready for picking, even the herbs have gone crazy. All this without any irrigation, as everything is so tall I assume that what moisture is in the soil is trapped and  can't evaporate in the hot sun that we have been having. At least with jungle growing if there are weeds I can't see them! Tomorrow I will set forth and crop things, I may never get out of the jungle but there is plenty to eat in there.
Next year I will do better, maybe?
Oversized Hubbards.
The Hubbard table birds are now all in the freezer, although we feed them exactly the same way as last year and culled at the same age they are far too big, most have had to be cut into portions, we have no need for birds that have averaged out at six and three quarter pounds, the heaviest was 7lb 13 oz and the smallest 6lb 5oz cleaned weight.  We will have to do a re-think next year, maybe find a different breed of bird. Although none of them had leg problems one did have large cyst on the breast, although the feathers were still intact and the skin was not raw, presumably from laying on the ground rather than perching at night. Even though we are not that happy with them we have tried a couple of thighs which were very tasty and I suppose that is what counts, plus they had all the freedom that they wanted.
Kittens have found the baskets.
The kittens are growing fast and into everything, the other cats love them
Suzy (Too much dignity to share a basket.)
with the exception of Suzy, he just does not like kittens. The older cats are quite happy to play with the kittens and share their food.
Misty (alias Shadow and Twinkle)
The black kitten had been called Shadow but she didn't seem to like that name, we tried several other names to no avail, then the name Misty came up and she responded, I expect she was wondering what took us so long to call her by her correct name,
Freddie we got right from the start.

Freddy has more photographs as he stays still longer.
The weather has at last cooled and we have also had some real rain, the garden needed it not least the flowers, the roses have been very short lived this year, maybe we will get a second flush now that we have got some rain, I hope so,
This weeks table decoration.
I do like to have cut flowers in the house and would prefer not to buy them.
All the small birds have now made a reappearance, we know that the nest boxes we made were used although  we not  sure by which birds, we have lots of
Robin on bog oak.
Robins and Hedge Sparrows around plus the wagtails and wrens, it seems as though it was a good breeding year for all the small birds.


  1. Shall we send out the search parties? Are you still hacking your way through the jungle? We have a long-handled slasher you could use as a machette......

  2. Found my way out again, I must give the tunnel some serious attention and get stuff started for the winter.

  3. Do you hand pluck all your birds? How long does that take?

    Freddy is adorable.

  4. Yes Cole we pluck by hand, wet method, it takes about ten minutes for the main pluck and five minutes to finish, quite hard work on the fingers.

  5. Oh my how those kittens have grown. The are adorable and I love Misty she is a beauty and so is Fredie. I hope to get two kittens sometime in the future. I want a tunnel I think it would really extend my growing season.. Cheers

  6. The kittens are an absolute delight, we are so pleased we got the two of them, Tess adores them. If you get a tunnel Carole go for the best that you can afford,, thick walled large diameter frame work, we find that a ground rail rather than trenching the cover is better, you can get the cover far tighter this way.