Potato planting and wallpapering

Rachel and Elizabeth at the allotment

We planted some potatoes at the allotment today. Lately Elizabeth has become interested in gardening because she has idyllic visions of being self-sufficient. I can remember going through a phase like this when I was about her age. At the time it motivated me to try making my own soap which I did with a… Continue reading Potato planting and wallpapering

Clever crow stealing peanuts

I felt bad recently because when I replaced my bird feeders with ones that had a protective cage to keep pigeons away I realised it would also prevent blackbirds from accessing the food. Blackbirds are ground feeders but I did see them occasionally use the hanging feeder. I remember it because there were two of… Continue reading Clever crow stealing peanuts

Allotment produce in January and Veganuary

I got four leeks and lots of kale at my allotment today. There's still a number of leeks left; definitely enough to last us until spring. My pond is filled with leaves and I had this idea that I'd pull them out until I actually tried. They're frozen in! I took this video of it.… Continue reading Allotment produce in January and Veganuary

The wasp and the sticky bun

I had an encounter with the local wildlife on the weekend: a wasp stung me on my lip. It was not a particularly nice experience. I blame the cinnamon bun. I had gone to Bandit Bakery to get some bread. Bandit Bakery is the best artisan bakery on the planet and they make the best… Continue reading The wasp and the sticky bun

Milk deliveries, mung beans, and AstraZeneca

We've been getting oat milk delivered in glass bottles to our home twice a week for a month now and we love it. The milk is made by Oato, a British business using British-grown oats. This week the glass bottles changed and have a message printed on the side. I find it odd that people… Continue reading Milk deliveries, mung beans, and AstraZeneca

Pot-pourri from a Surrey Garden

This book appeared in the post today. It was addressed to me but I have no idea who sent it. Perhaps it's a birthday present? Thank you whoever you are! It's right up my alley. In the forward it says, "Through her writing, she [Mrs C.W. Earle] swayed a wide public away from geometric formality… Continue reading Pot-pourri from a Surrey Garden

Bees in the artichoke

Another Sunday of weeding at the plot has come and gone. It's amazing how much the plot changes from winter to summer. This was the plot back in April. Here it is today. The artichoke has started flowering and it's beautiful. I counted 5 bees in the flower head. Something was decimating my kale (deer… Continue reading Bees in the artichoke

Eating weeds

When everyone was panic-buying in March I saw some stinging nettle springing up in our backyard and decided to leave it there rather than weed it out. Stinging nettle is a highly nutritious food. It has anticarcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties as well as being high in calcium and iron. How do you eat it… Continue reading Eating weeds

Two years at Award Force and the dandelion war

It has been more than two years since I started with Award Force and a year since I became a product manager. I love my job, my role, the company, and all my colleagues. I am so fortunate in all respects and am particularly grateful to have a full-time job at a time when so… Continue reading Two years at Award Force and the dandelion war

Perennial vegetables

I harvested lots of green leafy veg at the allotment today. I've remembered what the cauliflower-looking plant is. It's a perennial broccoli that I planted last summer called Brassica Oleracea Botrytis Asparagoides.  It should continue producing these cauliflower-type heads for five years as long as I continue to harvest them. It's only just starting fruiting… Continue reading Perennial vegetables

Kale, parsnip, and a recipe for bannocks

I went to my plot today to pick some kale. I also found this huge parsnip. It was pretty quiet at the allotments with practically no one there on what is a beautifully warm and sunny spring Sunday. Everything is starting to come to life including the rhubarb. We'll be eating rhubarb crumble before too… Continue reading Kale, parsnip, and a recipe for bannocks

Let the battle begin

We had a nice afternoon at the allotment today planting some tatties and spreading lovely soil from the compost heap over the garden beds. There's something very satisfying about getting your hands stuck into a heap of compost and spreading it around. The kids were initially very bored and complaining until Ben suggested they plant… Continue reading Let the battle begin

Wonky parsnips and the winter solstice

I went to my allotment today having not been there for a few weeks. I picked some leeks and parsnips for Christmas dinner but my leeks are looking a bit wonky. Does anyone know why this happens? It's the first time I've ever grown parsnips so I'm excited even if they look deformed. It was… Continue reading Wonky parsnips and the winter solstice

A cucumber in Scotland in November

Yesterday I picked all these tomatoes at my allotment and even discovered a cucumber! This must be a first for Aberdeen: a cucumber in November. I thought my cucumber plant had died but it's a bit of jungle in the glasshouse and I didn't notice this cucumber until yesterday. I picked all the green tomatoes… Continue reading A cucumber in Scotland in November

Pickings from my allotment and buffet breakfasts

I got a funny mix of summer and winter veg at the plot today. The tomatoes in the glasshouse are still fruiting, although more slowly now, and I harvested the first of my leeks. I also harvested my one and only pumpkin. It has been small and green for several weeks now so I decided… Continue reading Pickings from my allotment and buffet breakfasts

Pitmedden Gardens

Last Monday was a bank holiday here and we took the opportunity to visit Pitmedden Gardens. Despite being only 14 miles north of Aberdeen, we've never seen them before. We visited the café once on a trip to Tolquhon Castle but have never stopped to look at the gardens. Pitmedden Gardens is a recreation of… Continue reading Pitmedden Gardens

An easy vegan meal, shed painting, and slim pickings

I've been making a lot of pasta with pesto lately. The kids love it and on Tuesday and Thursday evenings I have less than an hour between when my workday ends and my General Assembly course begins so I want something that's quick and easy to cook. I buy the pesto sauce which is vegan,… Continue reading An easy vegan meal, shed painting, and slim pickings