Sunday, 19 September 2021


 Dora came to visit and help out for 10 days.  We finished the tyre wall renders and mosaics and got started on weeding and planting near the entrance.

Elderberry season.  Dora made all sorts of jams .... with the elderberries, rose petals and raspberries from the land.

Some photographs that Dora took of some of the little creatures that share the land here: 

Kerterres in Brittany

 Little spaceship like pods made with hemp and lime nestle amongst a 'jardin-jungle' on the far West coast of Brittany.  They have been sculpted by a pioneering woman called Evelyn with the help of countless volunteers and people attending her on-site construction courses.  They are part of a wider initiative to demonstrate low impact living that is closer to nature.  The pods are surrounded by trees, shrubs and other plants that provide shade, food and building materals.  Hopefully we can build one here next year.

Loulou de Toulouse

 At least I think it was Toulouse - anyway, certainly the South and somewhere hot.  Loulou arrived on her bike and gave me a bouquet of dried wild flowers that she had collected on her way.  A charming start to a productive stay.

Lou helped me to patch our tyre wall up - it had lost some of its lime render and mosaics due to a bad mix for the top resulting in water infiltration.  I had already re-done the top with stones from the land and NHL 3 lime and sand - nice and waterproof.  Lou added a feminist logo ....

... and helped to weed around our extremely productive thornless brambles.

She also did some fabulous vegan cooking  AND we went to visit the kerterres in Brittany (see next post)  on a wildcamping weekend.

Thursday, 25 July 2019

The kitties

Our rescued kitten from last year had kittens a few months ago ... and here they are spending quality time with me and their mum in the garden....

TO BE CONTINUED - more kitty photos to follow

The tyre retainng wall

Well it's been another mammoth project - a retaining wall at the entrance.  We decided to do a rammed earth tyre method having been inspired by looking at books on earthships.  A few images to show the procedures and progress ... it's still not finished!!

After digging the shape we started to lay out the tyres
that we were given by various garages and tyre
companies.  Actually it's not easy to find tyres now
as most companies have contracts with companies
that recycle them.

Placing more tyres.  The pile of earth is what we dug
out of the banks to get the shape we wanted.

Once the tyres were filled we built a low wall with
stones from the land and a lime and sand mortar
and then filled behind it with broken terracotta tiles
from a barn that had to come down last year.  This
will keep the humidity from reaching the earth and
lime renders that will go on the tyres to hide them.

Voila - gaps filled!!
We than attached chicken wire to the tyres to create
a 'tooth' and rendered them with cob.  We also embedded
stones from the land into a cob mixture on the top.

Using old broken bits of tiles and
slate lying around here, we are
creating a mosaic embedded in
a lime mortar ... including symbols
related to peace and nature themes.

Iva came to stay with us for a few day. She
is involved in the extinction rebellion
movement to try to get governments to
urgently act on climate change.  We are
including their logo in the mosaic.

PART II TO COME ............

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

Gardening and solar dehydrator

Alex the lawyer "I'm not a lawyer" spent a few weeks here with Simone from Germany earlier this year.  We did lots of exotic vegan cooking and debated debated and debated ...

Alex fell in love with kitten

White cat watched from afar

Helping to create supports for the beans

Harvesting something

Hello kitten

Being a keen vegan cook, Alex helped create
some exotic dishes


Creating or first solar dehydrator
A trip to collect woodchip and an opportunity for
Woodchip run - It's free and it's just round the corner from us
Simone in the greenhouse
Creative communal cooking
Simone making a chocolate dessert
Simone did lots of seed sowing



Rouxbe vegan cooking course

 I spent the earlier part of this year doing an online professional plant based (vegan) cooking course with the Rouxbe school.  I honed my vegan cooking skills and learned a lot about health and food.  Some highlights:

Spiralised veg.  Purdy

Chocolate torte with a redcurrant coulis (berries
from the garden) and nusturtium flowers also
from the garden.  Yum!!
Fun with agar agar

Brownies made with kidney beans

Cucumber rounds with cashew nut cream 'cheese'

Gaspacho shooters

Lots of organised 'mise en place'

Raw lasagne (nasturtium pesto, fermented cashew
cream cheese, marinaded mushrrooms and raw
marinara sauce ... a work of art!!

Nasturtium pesto ingredients

Chickpea something or other

Thai soup