Free range chickens: once you cluck, you can’t stop!

  So it turns out that having chickens about the place may well be addictive. I find that I’m really enjoying having them around. They burble imperiously at me when I bring them corn, and I like the pompous way in which they strut. Yet I have to say, I don’t feel actual affection for them, […]

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Smallholding dreams for 2018

New year’s resolutions have always seemed a bit big when they’re a total lifestyle change, so for years we’ve tried to make a list of smaller things we’d like to achieve in the next twelve months. In that vein, I’ve started to think about all the things that we want to do on our smallholding […]

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Planting an orchard

In our rush to become self-sufficient, we somewhat madly placed an order for 32 bare-rooted fruit trees, 160 raspberry canes, 36 fruit bushes and 10 rhubarb plants the day that we exchanged on our little smallholding and a couple of weeks ago, they arrived. Faced with all these bushy twig things and a finite dormant […]

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Chilly chickens

It’s cold here at the moment. I mean seriously, nose-achingly cold. We can’t have had ice covering the car more than twice in the last three years that we lived in London but here it’s been almost every day for at least a month and as I type this the thermometer already reads less than […]

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Chickens, chickens everywhere, but three are on the blink!

When we first adopted our ex-battery hens I had visions of finding ourselves knee deep in eggs. The reality (as with most of the things I had idealistic, city-person thoughts about) is somewhat different. We do actually get a steady daily supply of eggs from our girls but at a rate of exactly one egg […]

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Country course review: cider making with Rural Courses

I’ve always loved Autumn; the crisp bright sunshine, the first fires at home, the crunchy leaf walks, the harvest and the glorious foliage. I love it so much that years ago, Mr Land Girl and I decided to have an autumnal wedding in a Portuguese vineyard near where I grew up. It’s unfortunate that neither […]

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I hate my Aga, and this is why it has to go

There are so many things that come to mind when one pictures stereotypical country living in England. Traditional old houses, be they stately piles or thatched cottages. Boot rooms. Gravel driveways. Wellies everywhere. Open fires welcoming home cold but exhilarated walkers. And Agas. For those of you outside of the UK, an Aga is a […]

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