Thursday, 20 October 2016

Back to Smallholding

So here we are. The blog I was going to post over three weeks ago!

Charlie, complete with new trendy hair style.
Sue's best friend, another Sue, brought Charlie, Boris's best friend, up to the farm for the weekend. It was the weekend of the Smallholders Annual Produce Show, so on Sunday morning we were out in the garden choosing the biggest Mangel Wurzel. We had a prize to defend.
I stayed on the farm for there was much work to catch up with, so it was a text message which informed me that we had beaten off the nearest competition by about a kilo. VICTORY!!!

Not only that, but Sue had scooped the prize for Best Recycled Object with her turkey feather lampshade.
That evening we had been invited over to a barbecue at our new neighbours. It was a lovely evening. Iain and Carol Ann were too busy for us to get to know them much better but it was a good chance to have a nose at what they've done to the place as well as to chat to our other neighbours.

25th September 2016
A rare sighting of a Muntjac deer today. It nonchalantly crossed the next field along.

I spent the morning fixing up the sheep electric fence. One of the posts had rotted at the base and needed replacing and I needed to put in a proper link to the circuit round Rambo's enclosure, as just tying the electric wire was causing it to arc and burning through the wire.
It was a good opportunity to spend some time in close proximity to the sheep. Some of them are having eye problems at the moment. I've consulted with the interweb and decided for the moment to just wait and see what happens. The two fawn ewes both have crusty, closed over eyes, but it seems to come and go. More worryingly, one of the hogget lambs has both its eyes very cloudy. This is the one which had crossed the fence into the next paddock. When I put it back with the others, they were giving it a fair bit of stick.

(ed. When I returned from Shetland, the sheep's eyes had improved greatly. Now, another week on, they are all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed again).

There was still time to put the roof on the chicken house I've been renovating and to move it down to the chicken pen. The Ixworth chicks have outgrown their accommodation up here so it was great to be able to move them to a pen within the larger chicken enclosure.

As it was chicken moving day, I let the broody and her two chicks out of the stable to explore.

26th September 2016
For the second year in a row, blight has eventually reached the tomatoes in the polytunnel. We have had a very good crop, so I took all the plants out today.

The unseasonal warm southerly wind continues and all day House Martins were heading south. We don't get them breeding on the farm and I only see them rarely on migration.

27th September 2016

The warm wind strengthened today. Four Swallows battled south and there was a late Hobby, presumably following the swallows and martins. I guess they will provide it with occasional tasty snacks all the way back to Africa.

I had a very rare trip to a shopping centre. I hate the places. I was surprised by the proliferation in mobility scooters.

The purpose of the trip was to stock up on warm clothes for Shetland.
I got it over and done with as quickly as possible.

And that's where we're up to. I've since been to the Outer Hebs, Shetland and back, Shetland and back again.
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