A Year on the Green Roof

We love our green roof here at The Secret Acre. Everyone should have one.

July is one of the best months with an outbreak of small white and yellow flowers, although this year’s display is less pronounced than last year, possibly due to the very dry spring compared with 2016’s deluge. Continue reading

Advertisements

Pole Dancing – Part 2: Laid to Rest

It’s not just tyres we’ve been recycling recently to create new garden borders at The Secret Acre.

For two years the old electricity pole has been languishing under the woodpile.

In April we finally laid it to rest, fittingly close to where it used to stand, as a new garden border along the edge of the patio. Continue reading

Green Roof, Yellow Roof

Green Roof - 3 July 2016The green sedum roof remains one of the highlights of our eco-makeover at The Secret Acre.

Visually striking, it is a daily joy to behold as it changes and evolves across the seasons.

In June and July a profusion of small white and yellow flowers have blossomed in the green, attracting a mass of bees and insects.

Finishing the Landscaping

Landscaping 1 - Dec15Apart from the snagging, The Secret Acre’s eco-makeover feels pretty much truly complete now the external landscaping around the house has been done too.

First up (below) was removing the old tarmac front drive and replacing with a permeable pebble surface, to provide sustainable drainage, and extending it down the sides of the house. Continue reading

Show me the (renewable heat) money!

MCS CertIt seemed wrong, in the season of goodwill, to title this post ‘Fuck Off George Osbourne’. Although perhaps it would have been understandable given you can argue this is currently the worst period for UK environmental policy in 30 years. Certainly the Tories, unshackled from partnership coalition and driven by the Treasury, are not a pretty sight.

Their well documented proposal for an 89% reduction in the Solar PV ‘Feed In Tariff’ may well effect our own plans for a PV array next year. And today’s ‘climbdown’ in the face of a storm of criticism, to just a 64% cut, will do little to reduce the damage. Boris Johnson is right to be “very concerned” that up to 20,000 jobs could go in the next few months. But ultimately the economics of solar will defeat oil whatever the Tories do now. Just a shame those jobs will have gone to other countries by then, sacrificed on the alter of political ideology. Continue reading

Our new Energy Performance Certificate

EPCsIt was with some trepidation recently when Neil from the Severn Wye Energy Agency came round to assess The Secret Acre’s new Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). This was after all the independent validation of our smallholding’s whole eco-makeover!

When we found The Secret Acre in 2013 its EPC stood at a lowly score of 44 (in band E). Continue reading