Posts Tagged mud

Beat the weather gardening, or sowing seeds indoors when its raining outside and you don’t have a greenhouse!!

Like most of the UK we have been experiencing a lot of rain in the past 2 weeks.  In fact we have had 2 inches of rain in the last couple of days, as well as hail.  Down by the hens it is just mud, it is so wet.  The hens don’t seem to mind too much, they still spuddle around in the puddles and even drink from them.  They do look a bit bedraggled but are still producing eggs,  – we got 13 eggs from 14 hens today, so not too bad.However, for us humans day time rain, although needed as many parts of the UK have drought conditions and hose pipe bans, is just a nuisance as it stops us from getting on with the outdoor work that we want to do.  Unfortunately I don’t have a green house yet, so getting seeds started means either sowing direct into the ground, and it is just too cold at the moment, or sewing indoors.

For ages now we have been collecting the cardboard inners of toilet rolls or kitchen rolls.  The toilet roll inners are just the right size for me to start off seeds in, but the kitchen roll inners I have to cut into 2, hence they are different heights.  I find an old roasting dish and fill each  cardboard tube with compost and then sow one seed into each tube, and put a little more compost on top.  In this way I have sowed Courgette, Sweet Corn, Squash (Petty Pan) and Runner Bean seeds.  The runner beans I put 2 seeds into each tube.  Then I water them.  So here they are:

My seeds in cardboard tubes

Then I moved them onto our south facing window sill in the dining room. You can even see our wedding photo on the window sill, which we still keep there, although we have been married for coming up 18 years now!!

Seeds on the window sill

The beauty of  this method is that without a greenhouse I can still bring on seeds indoors.  When they have germinated and sprouted and the weather is a bit warmer, I will plant the cardboard tubes into the ground, thus not disturbing the roots, and then the plants will grow on from there. So all in all a good afternoon’s work, and all tidied up before our B&B guests get back here. visit us at www.lodgehousebandbsomerset.co.uk

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Chickens in the mud

The chickens are paddling.  We have had so much rain this week that the run outside the hen house is just squelching in mud and puddles.  But do the chickens mind? No not one bit.  In fact they just paddle in the mud and drink from the puddles.  Mind you their feathers get wet and muddy and then the eggs they lay are muddy too.

I think the chickens like paddling.  Earlier this year we put out large trays of water for them, as they were drinking their water drinker dry daily, so we wanted them to have access to more water.  Rather than perch on the side of these trays to drink, they get right in, and stand in the water to drink. They are funny creatures.

Anyway Neil is trying to cure the problem by creating a new drain to drain water away from the hen run.  He has dug a big trench, about one foot deep, running from the hen house down the hill to the french drain.  He is going to get some porous drain pipe to put in the trench to lead the water out to the french drain.  Hopefully this will stop the land around the hen house from being so squelchy with sitting water.

It’s strange to think that in the East of England there is still a drought, with reservoirs short on water for this time of year, and here we are with an excess of water!!

The mud has not stopped the hens from laying.  We are regularly getting 6 or 7 eggs a day, and the blue ones have begun to get bigger as the Cream Legbar gets more developed.  We  have 2 Cream Legbar hens, so hopefully the other one will come into lay soon, and then we will get 2 blue eggs at a time.

If you want to taste blue eggs visit us at www.lodgehousebandbsomerset.co.uk

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