Despite our usual New Year optimism for
the gardening year ahead, an unexpected combination of care duties, hospital treatment and Covid, meant that we are having a very slow start to our spring at The Secret Acre. Continue reading
Posted in Garden, Greenhouse |
Tagged Alison, asparagus, bluebells, chitting, dog, Emma Alesworth, field beans, Greenhouse, grow your own, Noodle, Paul Rainger, Phil, planting out, potatoes, seed sowing, seedlings, seeds, Smallholding, The Secret Acre, veg beds, veg growing, veg planting, wild garlic |
It’s now two years since we said
goodbye to fossil fuels, and went fully electric with our Renault Zoe.
And despite some periods of Covid travel restrictions, we have been very happy with it, driving the length and breadth of the country, discovering the rapidly increasing numbers of charging stations in lovely spots off the motorway. Nice, like driving used to be.
Posted in House |
Tagged electric car, electric charging, Emma Alesworth, EV, EV charging, fossil fuels, home charging, MyEnergi, Paul Rainger, Renault Zoe, Smallholding, solar panels, solar PV, The Secret Acre, Zappi |
January tends to get a
bad rap as a month.
We blame Pilot for letting the rot set in when they sang in their
1975 No1 hit single “January, sick and tired, you’ve been hanging on me”.
Josephine Nuese, author of The Country Garden pointed out, gardening really begins in January, with the dream. So come last year’s cold snap, or this year’s unseasonably mild weather, we kind of quite like January here at The Secret Acre. Continue reading
Posted in Garden, Good Life, Kitchen |
Tagged bread making, brussel sprouts, crocuses, crop rotation, Emma Alesworth, field beans, gardening, green manure, grow your own, January, Josephine Nuese, kitchen, leaks, mushrooms, New Year, Paul Rainger, planting plans, seeds, Smallholding, The Good Life, The Secret Acre, veg beds, veg growing, veg patch |
September harvest with its late summer sunshine gave away to increasingly damp and cool autumnal weather, we gathered in the last of the crops at The Secret Acre and started clearing down the veg beds.
Here are a few pictures from October and early November’s gradual decent into autumn.
Posted in Garden, Good Life, Greenhouse, Kitchen, Orchard |
Tagged apple juice, apple pressing, apples, autumn, courgette, Emma Alesworth, fruit crumble, grow your own, lockdown, Paul Rainger, peppers, quince, Smallholding, squash, The Good Life, The Secret Acre, theatre, tomatoes, Tromboncino, Turkish Eggs, veg beds, veg growing, veg patch |
In between this year’s growing season at The Secret Acre, from
Flaming June to September’s Harvest, we have also been carrying on with our project to rebuild the Pig Sties.
completed the demolition with family help earlier in the year, we enlisted ‘Bob the Re-Builder’ for expert guidance in the shape of Al from Omnijob. Continue reading
Posted in House |
Tagged barn, Brexit, carpentry, diy, eco makeover, Emma Alesworth, garden office, Omnijob, Paul Rainger, Pig sty, rebuilding, renovation, sheds, Smallholding, stables, The Secret Acre |
Here’s our quick pictorial look at some of September’s harvest season action at The Secret Acre.
As is so often the case now under climate change,
awful August gave way to warmer days again in September, as soon as the school had gone back ( September was second warmest on record for the UK), before autumn could return again properly in October.
In the garden, flowers, fruit and veg all continued in abundance as we moved into this
harvest festival and apple pressing season. Continue reading
Posted in Garden, Greenhouse, Kitchen, Orchard |
Tagged apple pressing, apples, aubergine, autumn, basil, bhajis, climate change, courgette, crop swap, dahlias, dehydrator, Emma Alesworth, figs, Greenhouse, grow your own, harvest, kitchen, orchard, Paul Rainger, pears, Pink Fir, potato, raspberries, September, Smallholding, sweetcorn, The Good Life, The Secret Acre, tomatoes, veg beds, veg growing, veg patch |
You might remember that
last year, Emma tied on points with another competitor for first place overall as ‘Best in Show’ at our local Fruit and Veg Show.
We are nothing if not competitive here at The Secret Acre, so as the start of Village Produce Show season loomed again at
the end of August, Emma was plotting to go one better this year.
And that she did, claiming the ‘Best in Show’ trophy as outright winner this year, picking up the section winner cups for Best Baker and Best Brewer en-route. Continue reading
Posted in Garden, Good Life, Kitchen |
Tagged baking, best in show, brewing, Emma Alesworth, grow your own, harvest, onions, Paul Rainger, Smallholding, The Good Life, The Secret Acre, veg growing, victory, village show, winner |
It seems to us that more and more August is becoming the start of autumn in the UK under
climate change. Certainly our green roof seems to think so!
In the last few years, summer heat seems to have started too early in spring, with an awful August (in time for the school holidays!) before the sun often returns again in September before a final slide into full autumn.
July’s veg patch bounty continued to accelerate in August, aided by our usual school holiday influx of visitors, put to work on the growing harvest.
Here’s a few of our pics from our August at The Secret Acre.
Posted in Garden, Orchard, Wildlife |
Tagged climate change, Emma Alesworth, field beans, green roof, grow your own, harvest, orchard, Paul Rainger, plums, potatoes, seed saving, Smallholding, The Secret Acre, veg beds, veg growing, wildlife |