Monday, 19 October 2009

It's all gone a bit quiet

Ah yes, it's pumpkin time again. Here's a selection of this year's pickings - some pumpkin potimarron (small orange ones), prostate squash, with tasty seeds (stripey green and gold one) and some blue banana squash (the long one). We also have some butternet squashes that need just a little more time to mature.

Apart from all things edible it's been very quiet here for the past week or so. For reasons beyond your control, and our imagination, we have had to stop building for a while.

Long story short, the previous planning permission for the site had an error, so we are technically without planning permission for our build and having to seek 'retention' and aren't allowed to do ANY building work until this is sorted.

This has been quite a shock to say the very least. Yet, life goes on. (It has also been an interesting lesson in 'living in the now' and not forever 'waiting' to be done and 'in'. After all, the journey is everything .. and it's quite some journey!).There's still the polytunnel to look after and chickens and ducks to feed here etc. We can still sort out some technical details, make plans etc

I'll still be blogging - just don't expect any pictures of work going on inside the house for a while.

So, here's what we HAVE been up to.

As well as the joy of squash ...

... on the last day of September I got some seeds started and now we have pak choi, lettuce and rocket etc growing really well in the tunnel. I'm also in the middle of setting up a watering system for the tunnel, with seep hose running from water butts. Watch this space to see if it works. (You can see the brown pipe has already been laid out between the plants)

I've also been collecting seed from those massive sunflowers.

Also, this week, we have installed an automatic pop hole for the bird house. It's very useful for when we o out before it gets dark and don't want to either lock the girls away really early or leave them out late without having the door shut.

It seems to be a great success. Luckily, the door goes down slowly (I was concerned that if it went down too fast and a chicken was going through at the time that it could get messy!) There is a battery powered light sensor that closes and opens the door at dusk and dawn. Very clever.

The days are really drawing in now and shortening, but they birds are still all laying really well.

We're getting some 'free' mushrooms from our latest load of spent mushroom compost - and very tasty they are too.

We also found that there's a lovely hazel on site that has been giving us lovely nuts.

I may still mark out my raised beds this month rather than waiting until Spring, if I prepare them now and then cover them with black plastic the soil could be nice and warm by Spring. (Don't you just love a bit of optimism).

Anyway, normal building work WILL be resumed, hopefully fairly shortly, so do keep checking in.