One for the Vine

Last month, inspired by our Turkish smallholding/winemaking experience this summer, we visited our local vineyard – Woodchester Valley – for a tour and tasting. Continue reading

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A Win and a Score Draw

September marks the start of Produce Show season, even if the football season, rudely earlier every year, has already kicked-off too.

Our history of mixed results continued this year…. Continue reading

Smallholding Turkish Style

Visiting Turkish friends this summer, we were told we must visit their Uncle in Urla who, like us, has built a house on an acre of land and is growing his own. And what an inspiration it turned out to be.

Alongside the veg, figs and olives, smallholding Turkish style means a small personal vineyard, about 10 rows of vines producing about 250 bottles a year, which of course we felt duty bound to taste extensively whilst discussing the finer points of our respective wine and cider making. Continue reading

Yesterday’s Veg Patch Harvest

Particularly pleased with our first ever crop of Padron Peppers (bottom left), continuing our Mediterranean weather themed summer. And one of our favourites in the kitchen.

At this rate of climate change we’ll soon be able to supply our favourite local tapas bar!

139 Days Later…

Has The Secret Acre gone to rack and ruin since our last blog 5 months ago?

In short, no.

What has gone to ruin, we’ve realised, was our resolve to only work part-time since moving to the smallholding. Both our hours have slowly crept up again over the last two years, almost without noticing. Continue reading

Three Wassails and a Burns Night

Chepstow Wassail & Mari Lwyd

Once again, January came and went, before we actually put into action any of our good intentions to make an early start in the garden.

Not that it was all just lounging around in the house after Christmas drawing up planting plans and ordering seeds.

As the snowdrops started to emerge, we got down to making another year’s supply of marmalade, following the award-winning formula we accidentally hit upon last time round. Continue reading