Ann's Farm Journal
Keep up with all of our updates from the farm including what’s new in season!
Less daylight these days
Hands up if you can’t believe it is November already and only seven weeks till Christmas?!
The evenings are really dark now…bit of an understatement…so our delivery boy (Bob), will be delivering to some of you, our lovely customers, in what may seem the middle of the night! Unfortunately, it is what it is and there is no way around it. Between now and March it is dark. The good news is that from Christmas onwards it does get to be a little lighter each day. We just have to enjoy being cosy indoors, planning and eating menus and watching Strictly till then.
As the days draw in, here on the farm we tend the plants, weather permitting, outside and when it is bad the tunnels are tended. This week has seen torrential rain which should have meant time spent under cover, however the most rain came on harvesting day! Typical! We will have to just get used to it…changing clothes even after wearing waterproof clothing. The crew did look like drowned rats at one point. Me thinks I shall have to start the hot chocolate elevenses soon.
The website does have new crops for you to eat. Lots of good traditional root vegetables, for instance swede, parsnips, beetroot, Jerusalem artichokes, potatoes and carrots are ready for you to cook towards your roast dinners, soups and casseroles. We also have the more unusual like fennel, celeriac and kohlrabi which will add an aromatic or peppery addition to your meals. The brassicas of cauliflowers, calabrese, kales, chard, cavolonero and cabbages contribute to a healthy and earthy addition to your meals. We still have lots of leaves for salads and sarnies. There are many more leaves about to appear on the website which may make for a more creative menu…rocket, spinach, endive, vivid choi, mizuna, mibuna, komatsuna, tai-sai, mustard frills, giant mustards, pak choi and Chinese cabbage. Some may come as an individual vegetable while some may make up the oriental leaves mix. Our tunnel beds are "chockablock" with really interesting and colourful leaves which will be warming and fragrant in flavour. As you can see in the polytunnel above, we have, from left to right, pak choi, beetroot and cavolonero.. All our Fresh Local Organic Produce will surely spice up many of your cold and dark evenings.
Defra have placed another order on those keeping birds. Birds must be kept under cover as of this weekend. Thankfully, our chickens are safely tucked up inside the chicken runs. We have three runs to choose from. The girls are all placed in one pen at a time, allowing the two other pens to regrow and replenish while having a rest from the chickens. We add a good mixture of grasses and herbs seed to the unused pens. This looks better than muddy ground. More importantly, it is a good feed for the girls. (We also provide any leaves which are remnants of the crops we harvest for yourselves. #nothinggoestowaste on the farm.) The area where the houses are for the girls, which is in the middle of all the doorways into the three pens does not look so good. This area is in constant use, which is not great when it rains as the ground becomes a soggy mess! Great care needs to be taken by us humans when we are in this area as we can and do slip!
The pigs also have a boggy area in each of the pens. They love it! Me, not so much. This is when keeping pigs becomes one of the more unpleasant tasks. This is when wellies can be sucked off the feet coz we get stuck in all the lovely mud created by the rain and the pigs. The water makes the wetness and the pigs wallow in the mud. As much as I enjoy our pigs I would prefer a professional mud face mask, not the smelly one provided by the mud from our pigs when they come across for a sniff and a rub.
This weekend, I am making jars of goodies once again. Thank you for your comments about the jars, greatly appreciated. We are also happy that soooo many of you are saying how you are thoroughly enjoying the vegetables. This is what we want and why we are in the business of growing. Thank you. Also, huge thanks for returning all the boxes and glass bottles #reuse.
All have a great week and thank you for your continued support,