By archmiles, 22-May-2013 20:36:00
See my penultimate post to know that we were happily planting our runner beans a couple of weeks back.
A certain Scottie, Flossie by name, has dug the whole lot up and eaten them. Little devil.
By archmiles, 22-May-2013 20:33:00
Down in Kent yesterday & managed to get time to drop in on an old friend - Majesty, in Fredville Park, nr. Nonington is the largest maiden English oak in Britain - a humungous 40 feet around. It's one of those trees where you just want to keep on taking more and more shots and it really is hard to drag yourself away. You will find other shots of it elsewhere, but I am bound to say that it is on private land, so permission to view is essential. I've put in this shot so that you can gauge the massive scale of the beast. Sadly, a huge bough (just in view on the left) fell to earth last year, but the tree seems fine otherwise.
Check out the face in the bole too. Who says Ents aren't real!
By archmiles, 07-May-2013 11:31:00
We decided the runner bean seedlings were good & ready to pop in the earth yesterday. The hazel sticks we've used for the last three years have now become rather brittle, so a little toddle up to the copse in the corner of the neighbouring field to coppice a few more fresh sticks. Amazing how much it has all grown in three years. Good feeling that we are helping keep the hazel stools producing by occasionally cutting them back, but our meagre needs are still not enough to keep the trees in check.
Here's Jannie back in the garden trimming off the shoots with an old billhook that I found at a car boot sale a couple of years back. Very satisfying to think our bean row is from a sustainable resource.
By archmiles, 04-May-2013 09:40:00
The farmers round here plant a lot of spuds - the heavy red earth of Herefordshire seems ideal for them...apart that is from years like 2012 when so much rain waterlogged the ground and tons of spuds rotted in the soil. Walking over Bodenham the other night we came upon this field of perfect ridges, banked above the waiting spuds. Massive machines, giant deep ploughs, harrows and automated spud planters create this ribbed perfection, more refined than any rough old plough could have made. Let's hope for a hot summer and a dry autumn for lifting otherwise you'll be paying a lot more for your bag of chips by the end of the year.
Bit of news - we have a pair of red kites nesting within a mile of where we live. Last year was the very first time we'd spotted a red kite over the garden in the 23 years that we've lived here. One tends to take the buzzards very much for granted as almost every day there's one or two floating about up there on the thermals, but suddenly there was a different shape in the sky - that triangular tail so distinctive. A month or so back we then saw two kites every couple of days & hoped they might be a male & female & just could be thinking about nesting. We suspected that we knew where they were and soon had confirmation from one of the red kite enthusiasts from the county ornithologists club. We don't know whether these are incomers from the large population some 50 miles away near Rhayader or somewhere else. No matter, it's fantastic news for the species which is really going from strength to strength. The female will be sitting on the nest now, but the camera is ready & waiting.
By archmiles, 22-Apr-2013 18:19:00
For many years I've been entranced by the wonderful etchings from Jacob George Strutt's "Sylva Britannica" - originally published in 1826. Strutt was the first artist to compile a comprehensive collection of 50 great British trees of his day.
So, following in his footsteps I've decided to release some of my own most prized images. At the beginning of May I'm launching a brand new series of signed limited edition (100) prints selected from my substantial collection of photographs of British Heritage Trees.
At only £35 each including delivery I think they represent excellent value - to find out more go to the Print Offer selection on the main menu.
Email or call me to reserve one any time from now onwards.
First in line is the famous Tortworth Chestnut - one of the oldest broadleaf trees in Britain.
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