Monday, April 21, 2008

Henry Reigns!

Finally sorted out my log in problems and hurray - we're here again.
Well it's starting to get under way. I've got Hywel (hubby) on board and he has built fences - permanent and temporary (wobbly!) through the orchard. We visited our friends' farm in York to get some hay and sheep manure - you never saw people so excited about sheep shit as us that day!

We also got a new rooster - he's a Plymouth something (rock?) and absolutely delightful! He's only young, and came with 2 females (we think). Of course there has been friction in the henhouse the last few weeks as they settle in, but it's getting better. Those nasty old biddies better watch out - 'Henry' is destined to grow a lot bigger than them!

Anyhow here's a picture of Henry (named after the king who also had a number of wives!) he is soooooo friendly and comes when he's called. My favourite rooster ever. Just hope he keeps his nice temperament when his spurs come in.

We also got a stack of seedlings and put them in. Yes we plan to grow from seed but wanted to get a head start. So, bought seedlings are in, seeds are currently being propagated - and hopefully will go in as a successive planting in a month or so.

Here's the plot! OMG! I did a double take as I accessed this photo just now. It was taken a few weeks ago - and already looks quite different. I will definitely get out there tomorrow and take some new photos.

Since this one we've put in a crop of potatoes a la Peter Cundall - which means just plopped them on the ground with a few sheets of newspaper under them, then layered them over and over with sheep poo and straw. It looks a burial mound but hopefully will give us heaps of potatoes. The kids just loved looking for the treasure (aka spuds) last year.

Today's highlight was buying a male and a female kiwi fruit vine. I think they're called Chinese gooseberries overseas. I was inspired by a You tube video I saw last night about a man who designed Forest gardens Robert Hart? - may need to edit that name, can't quite remember. In any case we've planted them against an old apricot tree that isn't producing and has several large old dead branches. Hywel was going to rip it out but I convinced him not to. It's still providing a frame/canopy and therefore might be useful in some way. Anyway - the vines might be a flop there - but you can only try and see. I think it should be ok - some protection from winds, but not enough foliage - due to the dead branches - to block out the sun the plant needs. Time will tell. Photos tomorrow!

While mentioning You Tube - I found a heap of Bill Mollison documentary segments there, and some inspiring clips from the Dervaes Family. Well worth a look. The stuff these people are achieving is amazing.

Anyway, thanks to those people who commented so far - I learn HEAPS from other people's info on the web - I hope some of what I learn is useful to you. :)

1 comment:

TheCrone said...

Hiya,

It's the Crone here ;) Yes, Robert Hart was the amazing Englishman who devised and planted a food forest.

That's the concept which I am following here at Wit's End. Getting the fruit trees in, then then middle layer followed by the understory.

I must admit that the fruit canopy and the understory are happening but I still need to get my act together for the middle lot!

Off to read more of your blog!