Monday, 26 October 2009

Rob's main job for this visit was to install three velux style windows in the roof of the garage. There is a large space above the garage about 9 x 6 meters which Rob is intending to use as an artists studio. Saturday Rob and Richard work all day but installed the windows with relative ease. They bring in lots of light and also mean we can see out across the fields.

Richard and Rob satisfied with their hard days work!

View of garage windows from the garden - they look as though they have always been there.

The garden is looking good, there are still some vegetables to eat
and others which were ready to be harvested have been cleared such as butternut squash, marrows, courgettes, aubergines, peas and runner beans. The areas which are now free of plants and weeds have been covered with either black plastic or with the cardboard packaging from the new windows. Hopefully this will prevent the weeds from taking hold this winter.
The eating apples are beginning to fall - so I have been using these windfalls to make apple juice. Not sure what the variety they are but they make good eaters and good sharp yet sweet juice.

We had rain on our journey down here, and the ground is now damp. With the damp and the mild temperature we were hopeful that mushrooms might have started to poke their heads out of the ground, so we went out yesterday to our usual spot but we weren't very successful, we did find a few which we ate with our supper last night. We did find an interesting beast, just 5cm long which we have now identified as a fire salamander, however not before posting it on the Autumn Watch site for identification.

The fire salamander

The grapes have ripened well and they are good to eat if full of pips. After our last attempt at wine making we will just enjoy these grapes fresh and leave the wine making to the experts.

All around us pear picking is in full swing, these are the small round pears used to make poiré (perry) which is a speciality of the region. These pears have to be picked of the ground by hand while they are still fresh, unlike the apples for cider which can be gathered by machine and can already be beginning to rot for the cider. It is really hard work, and apparently they don't know yet how much they will get per kilo for the pears, but it has been a good year so there are plenty to gather.

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