gardening, homestEAding

summer garden snapshots…

Despite the dismal weather at the moment some parts of the garden are looking good and I managed a few photos after work one sunny evening.




Since we came back from our holiday in Scotland we have had quite a bit of rain and have hardly sat out in the evening all summer this year or had need of the parasol…


but the hanging solar lightbulbs that clip onto the cherry tree branches have looked really pretty in the garden when they light up at night.

I am really pleased with my peas in the pot…

and courgettes…

just enough to make a summer quiche with a few mushrooms and tomatoes.



Delicious with a crisp salad.

bEAching, cottage garden

On the Mill Pond…

Heron in the Mill Pond

I went for a short walk recently with my sister in law around a local Mill Pond in Holmfirth (Last of the Summer Wine Country) which had an abundance of Cow Parsley all around the edge.  We came across this Heron hovering on a log waiting to catch his tea.  They are one of my favourite birds – so elegant and when they stay exceptionally still you can often mistake them for the statues people place by their pools to keep the real ones away.

We will be on our way to Scotland soon for our jolly hols (and a lot of hard work too!).  This visit we are having the new fence and farm gates erected – weather being kind to us.

Here is an update on our compost bins from the last visit.

Making compost the ‘Where the journey takes me’ way…

Collect a load of twiggy stems for the bottom layer to allow air to circulate at the base.  This will rot down slowly.

Compost -twiggy  base layer

Add some already rotted compost or garden soil…

Compost - 2nd Layer

Add a green layer of grass cuttings…

Compost - Green Layer

Now add torn pieces of wet cardboard and newspaer or shreddings…

Compost - Brown Layer

and another green layer of  nettles /fern leaves  or such like.  ( I have thrown in my dropped flower petals from my Camelia bush)

Compost - Green Layer 2

and a further brown layer of dead matter with a straw like consistency.  This is dead ferns and bamboo grass and Hydrangea cuttings.

Compost - Brown layer 2

Now add a soil layer and keep going layering up like a lasagne until the bin is full!

You can also add a scattering of one of the compost maker products you can buy to help it on its way.

I am hoping to find that the bin is less than half full when we get up to the cottage which will mean it is rotting down nicely.

See you soon…

For those following Re-routed read about my 3 for 2 purchase

beach cottage, bEAching, cottage garden, mEAndering, out and about, sEAsons

Beach Cottage garden update…

Before I did my disappearing act recently I had promised a post update about the work we managed to do at the Beach Cottage during Easter.  We set off from home on Easter Sunday around lunchtime and had a lovely journey up to Scotland calling at Tesco in Dumfries to stock up on a few items.  As we went along the coast road near to Creetown the sun was beginning to set across the bay and I managed to capture one or two atmospheric pictures of the Salmon nets.

Wig Bay Sunset

It was dark by the time we reached our cottage and so it was a surprise in the morning to look out and see the snow-capped hills across the bay from us above and beyond Port William.  The snow in this area just before Easter had been so bad that our village and many others down on the Mull of Galloway had been without electricity for 3 days and this had completely disrupted our heating and I can tell you that the cottage was extremely cold.  Many people had been marooned in their homes and quite a number of sheep died from being buried in the snow.  One lucky ewe had been pulled out alive after 11 days and made the headlines in the local paper.

Luce Bay

We had a lot of work to get through outside.  The rubble pile is now removed with the help of two friends and and their large trailer…yeah.

The Rubble removed

This is the corner of the garden where about 8 trees fell in the winter gales of 2011.  We now have an open view and a badly damaged compost heap.  So we set to and dug out the useable rotted compost and then levelled the site ready to take the new super-duper compost bins.

The Compost Heap 2

The pile in the foreground below is the rotted compost for the garden, the bins have been placed over to the right of the old compost bins, which were only made of netting,  and will soon be removed.

New Compost Bins 2

The paving slabs are to stop the wildlife from burrowing up into the compost.  On our next visit we will be slotting in the front slats and adding some lids then we can transfer the compost into the new bins and hopefully it will rot down fairly quickly.

New Compost bins

Of course we generated quite a lot of garden waste from all the weeding that I did and this will have to be taken to the local tip on our next visit because we had to hire a car for this holiday and it didn’t have a tow bar for our little trailer.

The rubbish

However things are moving on slowly and on our next visit we intend to try to prepare the seaside garden to put down a lawn and remove the old hedge, put up some fencing and replant.    Now that the weather is becoming warmer it will be a battle against the weeds!

You might like to read the most recent post on Re-routed -my blog tracking the challenge to Reduce the things in my life


April / May Challenge