Sometimes I feel the urge to write, mostly I don’t, writers block predominantly caused by the need for a nap, a glass of sherry or pony cuddles, but sometimes things happen here at magical Purbeck I want to remember and out comes the quill pen.
Happily, as we’re both knocking on a bit, Mr C and I have both had our first Covid injections and with the lifting of restrictions Mr and Mrs C snr are once again allowed to come and toil the land, I don’t even pay them peanuts although I do palm off rather a lot of rhubarb on them, I have 3 huge very productive crowns that were here when we moved in, and I don’t really eat the stuff. It’s a bit chilly sitting down for lunch outside though, I think I need to invest in some heated blankets and long extension leads.
I love the fact that even in the middle of winter there are still bits and pieces about the place for harvesting, I was eating leeks and Brussel sprouts till the middle of March and this knobbly looking specimen is a horseradish root, it made a lovely sauce to go with our Sunday lunch. Yes that is a glass of sherry, stop judging me…
As Spring is here, the birds are once again nesting, it had a hive of tree bees in it last year, this year it looks like we’re having blue tits in the bird box. We also have crows nesting in the eves of the house, right next to my bedroom, they are extremely vocal, especially at about five in the morning. Every year I mean to block off the entrance so they can’t nest there anymore, and every year I forget until I get a raucous early morning alarm of million decibel screeching. This year I WILL block it off, I am not a morning person, I’m not really a night person either, the sweet spot is about 11am to about 3pm, before that, just don’t speak to me unless you’re bearing a cup of tea and after that I need a nap, preferably a 12 hour one.
Mr C had a bit of a project, every now and again something utterly random will irritate him and he’s off on a mission, that usually involves power tools. This time it was the house sign (which to be fair to him was a rusty mess) the sign is horribly ostentatious and not something we would have chosen, but it’s part of the character of the house so it stays. One of the ladies in the village said it used to be even more ostentatious as it was mounted (Dallas style) on an arch at the end of the drive (shudder).
Mr C wrestled it off the front of the house, it’s been there a while, it was quite the battle and lo, he set to with the powertools to remove the rust. Then he painted it gold (not ostentatious at all) with a black border.
The plan had been to stain the boards behind the sign, but we suspected that there might be bats living behind them, so that’s a job for another day. I think it looks rather nice!
As far as the ponios go, Little Louis is basically made out of love and rainbows and generally he expresses his happiness with dangly manparts. I’d noticed that he wasn’t hanging as free and loose as much as normal which is a general indication that he probably had “beans” in his sheath (this is a build up of smegma, a combination of grease, sweat and general “that area” fluids). As it’s been about 30 years since I last did a sheath cleaning, I decided I’d let someone else deal with crusty horse dick and hired a professional to come and sort out his dangly and not so dangly manly parts. I was right, he did have sheath beans, so that’s another annual job on the pony maintenance list. Owning horses is definitely a bit weird at times, that fact that someone has an actual job driving round the countryside cleaning horse willies is an indication of just how bloody weird we are!
A big thank you to my friend Gillian who came over to hold Louis as I got rescheduled at work and couldn’t be there, we might be weird us horse people, but we look after our own.
Louis, seemed to rather enjoy himself, definitely no signs of stress or upset whilst he was being “sorted out”.
When I planned on getting a couple of ponies (sorry hub, that was one pony, just one pony, of course), I went to a great deal of expense to build them a pony palace that I stuff full of fluffy straw and tasty hayledge, and they do this!!!
Rosie has nothing to report except a moustache that could probably win awards.
In the garden work on this years veggie crop has started in earnest, the first early tatties are in, the onions/garlic and shallots are looking good and behind some fencing that seems to be keeping the deer out thus far (thank you Michelle, your cast offs are my treasure!
The raised beds have been weeded, netting restored and some limited planting started and the bean cages are up!
It’s that time of year again, the annual cutting and burning of the Miscanthus, I had help with this!
I’ve got a bit of a project going on too, I’ve been going on and on for ages about the new little reading/deer proof garden I’m planning on and work has finally begun. I had a couple of weeks holiday from work and rather than sitting about napping (alright, there was a certain amount of napping, and sherry and more napping, I have made a good start on the reading garden.
I’ve lifted the turf (hard work that with just a shovel and a wheelbarrow). The soil has been rotavated, raked and then stomped down. Mr C did the rotavating (I’m not allowed to play with powertools due to being an idiot who is capable of causing significant damage to myself with a packet of tissues…) and then Mr and Mrs C snr helped with the stomping, they have much previous experience at this!
Then the weed suppressant fabric was laid, I love gardening, but anything that cuts down on the amount of weeding I have to do, I’m totally going to take shortcuts.
Work then came to a bit of a halt as the next step was to remove the conifer that was leaning over the greenhouse and the new garden. Although Mr C has become skilled with his chainsaw, this was a job for the professionals (mostly due to if it did squish the greenhouse, they’d have insurance!). The conifer has been safely taken down and chipped (I will use the chippings to cover the weed suppressant fabric once planting is complete.
Next to do is the fencing and the planting and then the reading and relaxing!
I wish we could get past the frosts, I have much planting to do and I need the space in the greenhouse and polytunnel for summer crops!
Hopefully next blog you’ll get to see the reading garden completed.
It’s not all huge undertakings round here, I find a lot of joy in the little bits and pieces that make the place look nice, really happy with these little planters I did to brighten up the garden tables.
I’ve been listening to the radio as per usual, it keeps me company while I’m digging and grooming and weeding, today there was an article about bloggers and Instagram and what not and how they’re influencing people in the wrong way, so listen up peeps, if you, even slightly, feel I’m in anyway influencing you, give yer head a wobble, unless your deepest desire is to be covered in a patina of horse detritus and general dirt, I am definitely not influenceable in any way shape or form. (Underpants by M&S, eggs by my mate Michelle, veggies sponsored by Mother Nature and a large smothering of horse crap, sherry by Croft – this latter is of no importance, but if you were thinking of popping by….)