Winter’s work is never done

Venturing outside in filthy weather to plant anything during the dormant season surely cannot be called anything but a giant leap of faith. This should be the season for languishing inside with a hot cup of coffee and eagerly checking the post every morning for the arrival of seed catalogues which allow us to fantasise […]

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Raspberries and other fruits

Raspberries make me absolutely furious. Well, supermarket ones do at least. Paying a ridiculous number of pounds for a few sad berries in their plastic punnet that inevitably rot in the car on the way home makes me livid. So it was always the case that our new kitchen garden would have a sizeable berry […]

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Sowing green manure in raised beds

It took me many years to realise that the bits of garden that actually poke out of the soil are the fripperies really and that the soil itself is the bit that requires the most work. Green manures are often recommended to stem tide of weeds in the spring until you’re ready to plant, as […]

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Winter in the polytunnel

Winter in the poly tunnel should be a time of leaves and carefully staggered late crops of things but mine looks a bit like the half price sale at a garden centre that’s going out of business. We’ve been so very busy lately that we haven’t been able to find the time to get some […]

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Slaughtering livestock at home: our first sheep are killed

Yesterday I watched as our four store lambs were slaughtered and went from bouncy vivacious sheep to hung and carved carcasses. It had a greater impact on me that I could possibly have imagined and so I wanted to write about it. When we moved from London to the countryside and decided to keep animals […]

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Top 10 Christmas present ideas for gardeners

All I want for Christmas this year is more time in the garden. Oh the pleasure that can be found in the idle pottering about of a summer evening, or the power harvesting of an autumn morning after the school run. I revert to childlike status, begging my family for “Just five more minutes” as […]

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Winter in the kitchen garden: planting a future

The arrival of winter should surely herald hedgehog-like behaviour in all of us. We no longer shuttle too and fro from the kitchen garden to the house laden with gluts that we don’t know how to process fast enough, but rather wish to laze by the fire with a good book. Most flowers fade and […]

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