Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Old Wisdom

Wednesday 4th April 2012
The rain continues in ernest.
With my plans for the Scillies postponed and no prospect of working outside today, I came up with a new plan.
My father has been in hospital for a few days and more, so today we 'did' the animals early then headed over to Essex. I must admit to not being the best at keeping in touch, so it was nice to see my mum and my uncle and aunt. Dad seems to be slowly on the mend. Unfortunately his sense of humour has survived! - Look after yourself dad.

The Blog Effect
I may not be very good at keeping in touch with people, but since I started blogging, everyone knows what I've been up to. It can be quite disconcerting. I start telling people about something and they tell me the rest!

Wisdom of Old
I hadn't realised, but when my grandad moved his young family away from Liverpool, he had worked for the queen's surgeon, looking after his country home. So he had bought himself a book, The Smallholder Encyclopaedia, edited by S.A. Maycock and John Hayhurst. This explains why mum knows so much about gardening and keeping animals.
I think grandad would be proud of what we are trying to achieve here and it's a shame he couldn't be around to see it.
Anyway, my aunt had managed to dig out his smallholding 'bible' for me, and I am sure it will contain many nuggets of old wisdom. Funny to think that I will be referring to the very same book which my grandad used 60 odd years ago.

I couldn't find a section on polytunnels, though, nor did the beekeeping section offer any advice about how to manage varroa.
There was some useful advice on insect control though!
It was also lucky that we read the section on Bacon Coupons. We hadn't realised we needed to surrender 104 coupons when we sent Squiggle and Curl off!

But, joking aside, there will be a wealth of knowledge in this book for me to peruse and soak in. In fact, sections on Jerusalem Artichokes and growing dandelions for their leaves seem to be touching the trends of today. The internet may be a wonderful source of information and opinion, but it is wonderful that nuggets of wisdom, almost forgotten, can be rediscovered by opening the musty pages of an old book.

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