Dyeing and Spinning Workshop

I’ve been being a bit quiet on hear recently because I’ve been having a bit of a rest. Things have still been happening and growing and I’ve just been in my studio painting! Yesterday though I went on a bit of a slow adventure and felt I had to share.

I went on a dyeing and spinning workshop for the day 🙂

We first cooked all the things that had been collected on site on the fire.

Some created quite a good colour like this fresh Alder bark.

This is some of the fleece that we dyed hanging up to dry.

We were shown how to make our own spindle out of Hazel wood….

….and were given some washed fleece so that we could learn to spin.

This is what I came home with. Some swatches of fleece that we’d dyed, our handmade spindle and a small skein of our very own spun yarn!

It was a very good day, but I was really tired when I got home. I think all the fresh (smokey) air did me good 🙂

Latest Produce report

Despite the major neglect of the garden it is still producing wonderful things for me!

I think it’s the best year for beetroot in a long time and my carrots haven’t had carrot fly this year 🙂

produce-1

…and the first proper fruiting of a young apple tree. The apples are still quite sour so have to stay a bit longer, but I must keep an eye out for scavengers!

produce-2

We’ll soon be building a new chicken house, so watch out for that 🙂 I’m very excited!

Peppers

Here’s a long awaited update from the green house.

These are red sweet peppers from bought seed.  I don’t want to speak too soon but I think they are doing alright.

peppers 1

These are chilli peppers I got free from a magazine. ‘Demon Red’ There were only five seeds and I have three healthy plants from them. By the sound of their name, they are gonna be hot!

peppers 2

These are ‘Scotch Bonnet’ chillies, from my own saved seed. They are looking good. If you look carefully you can see little buds forming on the top of the plants 🙂

peppers 3

These are common red chillies, medium heat, from my own saved seed. I dried some of these before and they keep well.

peppers 4

Can’t wait until they start turning red. I must look after them carefully now so as not to loose the fruit!:-)

New Life

I’m so excited with the prospect of spring, when the sun comes out I feel so energized! I have started tidying up in the garden and sowed my first few seeds. New life is starting to appear.

One single tomato seedling,Life 1
this is rocket on the left and to the right of that you can just see some radish coming through.Life 2
We are heading for a wonderful time of year! 🙂

Free fruits

We’ve been enjoying our fruit harvest over the last few weeks P1030231
and yes, the wonderful thing about it is all these luxurious fruits are free!P1030237
The small initial cost of buying the plants is minimal compared to the amount of fruit you get each year. So if you have to, or are choosing to live a frugal life these lovely plants are a must for your garden 🙂

Free Planters

Having a big garden is lovely, but the downside is that you need big planter to make any impression at all. So anything I can up-cycle is great. Thanks to a friend of ours, we acquired these three old builders wheelbarrows. I bought some very good value plants to go in them. I always buy plants that will last me more that one year, to gets seeds or take cuttings. I don’t think, if you are on a budget, bedding plants are a sensible option.  Look how beautiful they are, thanks Jeremy!

Wheelbarrow 2 WheelbarrowWheelbarrow 3