How can we live by creating a sustainable biodiverse world, instead of by consuming and destroying the one we have?

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Aging of Wood Chip Garden and Autumn Migrations

The Winter is slowly but surely closing in. The migrating birds are heading South towards warmer locations. We are left behind wondering where are they flying to ... some warm spot in Africa maybe, how does it feel to migrate I wonder with envy and amazement. I will not know, at least not in this life time ;) but I do know what Winter feels like ;)
One might say that kitchen gardens are dead for the year but that is not entirely true :) my new wood chip garden is teaming with life! Here you can see Fungi growing on the surface and creating a mycorrhizal web under it. Earth warms, various beetles and myriads of micro-creatures are moving into this friendly environment. All life prefers some sort of Cover. We have skin, fish has scales, trees have a bark, animals have fur and the soil has cover materials. At least in the wild it has but not on a man plowed field. Looking after the healthy soil life is my main objective, vegetables are just a bonus ;)

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Making ketchup and green tomato pickles

Its time to bring the last harvest to the end and prepare some food for the winter. I have taken in all the ripe and green tomatoes to make a home made ketchup and pickled green tomatoes. As per usual I will not write down the recipe for these since there are hundreds of good ones on the net and its all about personal taste any way :)
Chop chop chop
 Squeezing out the tomatoe juice
The roughage is being fed to chicken
 Evaporating the water content takes ages. It makes me think this ketchup is not that sustainable ...
 ... because out of all this work and energy I've got only this much
 Green pickled Tomatoes.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Harvest season ends with sowing

 A few days we had a frosty night so I made a decision to harvest all the Tomatoes and Cucumbers from the greenhouse. We will make pickled tomatoes from the green ones and the ripe ones will be ketchup. 
We didnt get many pumpkins this year. I have got these from a friend who got many. We will make pickled pumpkins for the winter use. I will make sure to keep many seeds for the next year sowing.
The wood chip kitchen garden has began to sprout with life :) I have sown many garlic cloves which have started to poke out of the wood chips. I have sown the garlic in the soil which I covered with wood chips. Wood chips will keep the weeds at bay and will make sure the soil is always moist which will benefit both vegetables and the soil food web.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Creating a Forest Garden

 I was cutting down some young Alder trees in the Willow shrubbery because they are simply taking over this ground. Alder is very invasive and spreads fast. During this adventure I found many young Blackcurrant bushes :) I know the previous farm owners had grown Blackcurrants, which they have removed to grow Wheat and Oil Seed Rape. These must be either grown from the seeds spread by the birds.
 So I move them out of shade into a place with full sun. Our forest garden area got 2 more rows of berry bushes. Will mulch this area with wood chips soon.
This forest garden area will be filled with edible berry bushes in the future, I hope :)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Building a sheep shed

 I have begun building a sheep shed. We are planning to get 2-3 pregnant sheep in January and this will be their shelter from strong winds and rain'n'snow. Apparently the land-race sheep called Spelsau we are to get are outdoors even when its rainy or windy but still they should have a shelter in case they need it.
So far the structure is up and the roof is on. I am using reused planks.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Collecting materials for composting

I have two large patches of Jerusalem Artichokes which are withering. I have cut them down with scythe
I ran the stalks thorough the garden shredder before placing onto the compost pile to speed up decomposition. I have coppiced many small Alder trees and now they are sending out new shots. Alder is a very good at fixing Nitrogen so I will make sure to cut them all down together with leaves and run them through the shredder. I have need for lots of compost soil and I better make that happen :)

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Harvesting the blight resistant Sarpo Mira potatoes

I have planted Sarpo Mira potatoes in 2x2 meter raised bed and I did plant them very close to each other. But this didn't cause any issues and they once again (3rd year) didn't get any blight problems :) Truly this sort is blight resistant!
 These will be used for planting next year in our large kitchen garden.
Lots of potatoes from a 2 square meters raised bed :)

Friday, October 10, 2014

The newly sown White Clover is growing well

 We have sown white clover and grasses on 1 hectare for our sheep and bees. They are growing very well. This is the south side of our small forest.
and this is the west side of our forest. To the right you can see a long row of well established Willow
Some of the clover has started to bloom already :)
We will get the sheep in January or February. I must start building a sheep shed soon and fixing the electricity fence.