Connecting to Earth~Grow your Own

Caterpillar loveHonour the sacred.
Honour the Earth, our Mother.
Honour the Elders.
Honour all with whom we share the Earth:-
Four-legged, two-legged, winged ones,
Swimmers, crawlers, plant and rock people.
Walk in balance and beauty.
~ Native American Elder ~

Just where have the last few days flown too? These last few days seem to have been hectic with my day job, harvesting, and granny sitting which I just love.  Above you can see how my little granddaughter not yet 3 loves to interact with nature… I am trying to teach her not to be afraid of the creepy crawlies and she had this little fellow crawling up over her arms for over 20 mins as she helped us in the allotments…The caterpillar got safely put back in the grass as she gently lifted him, and now knows that caterpillars poo too Smile as she discovered Open-mouthed smile

I seem to have discovered my love of cooking all over again too, and even Hubby who is usually the head cook, has opened his eyes wide at my new found urge to bake more often.. Maybe its the changes in energies as my creative mood seems to have had another boost… So  I will share a couple of recipes with you later in the post.

Ok so remember those Lovely butterflies we have had over Summer?

Peacock

Peacock Butterfly in our Garden

well we also have had our share of the caterpillars and while some in the allotments have sprayed chemicals to get rid of them, we do not use anything like that so its been a case of share and share alike!.

Devoured by Caterpillars

Devoured by Caterpillars

Remember this when I showed you the lattice leaves on the Brussels sprouts ?

Caterpillar Heaven. Herbert the scare-crow, couldn't scare the caterpillar's :-)   The sprouts are just visible below

Caterpillar Heaven. Herbert the scare-crow, couldn’t scare the caterpillar’s 🙂 The sprouts are just visible below

Well my hubby set two and stripped off the leaves which were covered in our little friends and then I went and did the same along the cabbage row.

The potatoes are now all dug up, we had  around 10 rows, and some are still drying out in the shed awaiting to be sorted, but we should have around 8 large sacks full.. These sacks hold up to 25kl and have only been filled half way or we would not be able to lift them ..

Potatoes Drying

Potatoes Drying

5 sacks of potatoes, onions and Apples in store

5 sacks of potatoes, onions and Apples in store

Yesterday we gathered the last of the sweetcorn in, and that is now all safely frozen. we cleared weeds and hoed where the onions were and potatoes were harvested from

Below you can see the sweetcorn patch along with the Leeks and spring onions we set between them. 

Harvest clearance ... Click for more info

Harvest clearance … Sweet corn Patch and leeks in background- Beets in foreground 

 

Blackberries

We are lucky in the fact that we have some wonderful Blackberry brambles around the back of our Allotment shed and have had an abundance of Berries we have picked this year.. In fact upon my travels I have seen many brambles in hedgerows, but would not fancy picking them from the roadside with all of those exhaust fumes which are deposited upon them.

Preserving in air-tight Jars

So I made a wonderful Blackberry and Apple Chutney, the recipe you can find HERE. as I added it to my recipe pages you can find on the top bar under Home Cooked Recipes

Potato and Beetroot Gratin

Then as we have had an abundance of Beetroot my daughter has been adding them to her smoothies and I tried out the Potato and Beetroot gratin which I had never tried before, and we loved it, and I will be making it again..  You can find this recipe HERE upon my Recipe Page.

On the home front in the green house the tomatoes are coming along now nicely as they are ripening, so that green chutney may not be needed. 

Green house Tomatoes

Green house Tomatoes

Ripening Tomatoes

Ripening Tomatoes

I may be quiet again for a time as another busy couple of days coming up again.. I hope you give those recipes a try I was amazed how easy they were to make and they both add that little extra something special to a meal.

Until next time take care and be good to each other..Oh and I am still wading thought the back log of all of your posts 

~Sue~

Autumn Gifts ~The Pantry is Always Full.

Woodland Walk

Autumn has already begun as we feel the morning chill. Here in the last days of September in the UK we have had record rainfall as a months worth of rain fell in one day. My heart goes out to all those whose homes were flooded yet again in this unpredictable weather of 2012. 

But today the sun is shining as it once again lifts our spirits to the beauty of an autumn day, as the blue skies and golden leaves start to form upon the trees.

I’m just recovering from a virus infection which knocked me sideways for a while, but I am back to feeling better again and wanted to share with you some of the beauties of Autumn as I took a walk on the 12th of September.. seems an age ago now as I walked among my favourite Trees.. I snapped a few pictures along my walk. Blackberries 

Here are some of my all time favourite bramble fruits the Blackberry, I like nothing better than making a Blackberry Pie with a few Apples mixed in with either custard or cream..

Blackberry and Apple Pie

Here is a Pie I baked a while back as we have lots of Blackberries in our allotments, which I freeze..This one is one I made earlier Smile..I hope to add the recipe on my Recipe page shortly for those interested.

IMG-20120916-00158

 I just love Wild Roses and here are the Rosehips which are a very good source of vitamin C. Did you know that you can dry Rosehips, making a herb tea? ( which often get added to commercially produced herbal teas ) Also if you like a Winter Tipple  how about Sloe Gin? I personally cannot stand either the taste or the smell of Gin. But to make Sloe Gin go to my Recipe page I have added a simple recipe there which you can find Here if you scroll down far enough.. Hawthorn

Hawthorn grows in abundance in our hedgerows here, They delight us in the spring with their white blossoms and are full again this year of the Haws the red berries, a sure sign that the birds will have plenty to eat as Winter approaches. I didn’t know until I read in my Tree Book that you can eat the flesh of the Haws if you get rid of the stones, you can make a jelly by simmering the fruit with a few crab apples..

Elderberries

Elderberry is another hedgerow fruit well known for making Elderberry Wine. I well remember an Aunt of mine who made both Elderflower Wine and Elderberry Wine another good source of vitamins.

In my childhood and when my children were small We would often go Hazelnut picking, My Dad never went anywhere in late September without nutcrackers in his pocket Smile.. I loved picking the nuts and couldn’t wait until they had turned from their green to brown in their husks. And my childhood treat was to painstakingly shell these sweet nuts often immature to sprinkle with salt on a saucer and demolish in a matter of seconds.. I so love the memory of nutting with my Dad.. Along with collecting Chestnuts and walking in the early morning mists to find the Field Mushrooms… here is a nice link to the kind we used to find.

Dad was something of an expert in collecting Wild Mushrooms and he would provide many a villager with a heavy bag of field mushrooms, and I have known them to be as big as the frying pan . ( Note when eating wild Mushrooms you must be experienced in identifying them as there are many poisonous fungi which unless you know can be wrongly identiAcornsfied )

Lastly I took a few pictures of the Acorns.. From young Oak trees which lined the walk you see in the first picture, we noted that many had a fungal disease and seemed to be dying an many had these peculiar malformed Acorns on them and they were not like anything I have seen on trees here before. Deformed Acorns

Here are the growths on the Acorns in this Picture , I Googled Deformed Acorns and apparently its  known as a ‘Knopper Gall’ caused by a tiny gall wasp Andricus quercuscalicis. it is a recent colonist to Britain in the last 30 yrs or so, and was first spotted in Northamptonshire in 1961. You learn something new every day!..

I hope you enjoyed a little walk with me today… Its great that the Rain has stopped at last and its promising to be a good day tomorrow Saturday so I’m making the most of it and intent to go out in the Fresh Air again to blow the last of this Virus away before more Rain on Sunday.. 

Take care and Have a great weekend all of you ~Sue

 

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Sue Dreamwalker

Sue Dreamwalker

Each of us, carries within us the capacity to change the world in small ways for better or worse. Everything we do and think affects the people in our lives, and their reactions in turn affect others As the effect of a seemingly insignificant word passes from person to person, its impact grows and can become a source of great joy, inspiration, anxiety, or pain. Your thoughts and actions are like stones dropped into still waters, causing ripples to spread and expand as they move outward.. I hope that I can send a few ripples out via the web of life, as we each of us weave the threads together... Welcome to my Sanctuary of Peace and Love... May we each spread our Lights around our World....Sue Dreamwalker

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