Who Knew Parsnips Are So Versatile?

The humble parsnip is a vegetable that only EVER was roasted in our home before we started our smallholding lifestyle. Like most things in our home we use the phrase “Waste not, want not” every day so we do much more with parsnips now.

Our Mixed Chicken Flock

We breed Buff Orpington chickens and anyone familiar with our social media accounts will be very familiar with the chickens either running towards us, or after us. Fiona’s accounts on both Instagram and Twitter as @theflooflady is totally devoted to the hens and cockerels stampeding across the field. In the sea of golden fluffballs thatContinue reading “Our Mixed Chicken Flock”

Blackberry Bliss

We have a large fruit cage in our field where we grow raspberries and blackberries. I appreciate it’s not pretty, but who needs pretty when we really need fruit. It’s very productive with early golden raspberries, late red raspberries and right in the middle of the summer we have lots of glorious blackberries.

Our Cheap Fruit Cage is Paying Off!

Over this last winter here in the UK we were required by law to keep our lovely chickens either indoors or in fully netted enclosures due to Avian Influenza Restrictions. We bought three 3m x 6m polytunnel frames that we connected up and covered with bird netting. It was much less space than they wouldContinue reading “Our Cheap Fruit Cage is Paying Off!”

Sometimes it can be Overwhelming…

Our home is our wonderful sanctuary. It gives us so much joy and our move to the smallholding lifestyle has been amazing, but…. yes, there’s a “but”. The work on the smallholding is dictated by the seasons and sometimes balancing this with earning money as well as supporting friends and family can be overwhelming.

An Unexpected Chick

We breed Buff Orpingtons chickens here on the smallholding and we love this friendly and animated breed. Each year we buy in a small number of hatching eggs. This is so we can select an unrelated cockerel from the chicks that hatch as our breeding cockerel for the following year. This helps keep our flockContinue reading “An Unexpected Chick”

Strawberries Everywhere!

I love strawberries. I really, really love strawberries. To feed my love of these fruits we’ve planted 300 square feet of them in our field. At this time of year we spend LOTS of time picking them and processing them so that we (OK, I should really have said “I”) can enjoy them all yearContinue reading “Strawberries Everywhere!”

For the love of Elders

This week we have been making elderflower cordial and its made me think about the underappreciated Elder tree. We have lots of elder trees on our smallholding and we make maximum use of their flowers and berries in season. There are so many uses for the flowers, berries and wood too it’s baffling that theseContinue reading “For the love of Elders”