Thursday, 16 August 2018

Coca Cola Cans Plant Pots.

I am always short of plant pots.  I spent a rainy yesterday (all of it)in my poly-tunnel office,sieving my homemade compost, potting up and making new cuttings for my ever increasing perennials plant nursery.  I have even started using Coca Cola cans. 

All I did was cut the top off with a tin opener and discard that and punch a couple of holes in the bottom with a knife. Bobs your uncle!  

Aluminum (American) or Alluminium (English) plant pots that will last for a very long time.  

We bought some coffee cups the other day and this worked out at eight Cents a cup.  They make good plant pots but they aren't cheap or free like the Coca Cola plant pots.

Makes you wonder how much we pay for our packaging?  I think manufacturers should print the price of the tin or plastic packaging on our groceries.  Do you think they should?    

Sunday, 12 August 2018

Butterflies On The Butterfly Bush.

I was visiting our pet cemetery in the garden where three of our dogs  have their graves.  I noticed the butterflies on the Buddleia  bushes.  I brought the Buddleia over with two wheelie bins of plants when we emigrated to Ireland seventeen years ago last month.  It was one of my successful cuttings that I made.  We have made lots of Buddleia bushes since then.

If you want to plant a bush that will attract butterflies, plant a Buddleia.  They are name after a vicar and Botanist: the Reverend Adam Buddle. He lived near Peterborough in Deeping St James.  I saw some Buddleia growing in derelict land near Temple Mead railway station when I went to Dorset in June.

My mental juke box started playing when I watched the butterflies.  Here's a song called Dog and Butterfly by the American rock band Heart.  I was lucky enough to once see them play live at Birmingham NEC in about 1988?  Enjoy.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Making Cucumber Soda Bread And A Funeral For A Canine Pal.

We have been looking for different recipes for cucumbers.  I found Cucumber Bread on the old Tinternet and T'web.  Of course we tinkered with the recipe and came up with Cucumber Soda Bread.  

Here's what we did:  We picked a cucumber.  Sliced it vertically in half.  Scooped out any seeds and pith with a spoon.  Then peeled the skin.  Then we grated the cucumber.  Then we strained the juice out with a spoon pressing the cucumber through the sieve.  You should end up with a cup full.  

Then you get a brown bread mix.  We used Oudlum's Traditional Brown Soda Mix.  Followed the instructions to make the bread which is written (printed) on the back of the mix paper bag and added the cup of cucumber.  

Bob's your uncle:  Cucumber Soda Bread.

You can see the pieces of cucumber shinning and glistening through the bread.  

Makes you wonder what other vegetables you can put in your bread.   We enjoyed our cucumber soda bread and would definitely make it again.

On a sad note:  Poor old Fido our Jack Russell who I often post pictures and write about on this blog.  Decided it was time to go to Doggy Heaven last week.   

Number two son wrapped Fido in her blanket with the paw prints printed on it and he helped me dig the hole next to her dad Toby's (Jake Russell, obviously!)and Zeta the Border Collie's grave.  I was very proud of our son and realised he's not a child any more 

Fido is missed very much like our other departed four legged pals. She was 16 in our years or 112 in dogs.  We've still got Scamp the pint sized Jack Russell and Domino our white cat with the black tail.  He's always sat on the window sill every morning looking through the kitchen window, waiting for his breakfast.  Hope you're all OK?

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Cucumbers Grown From Lidl Goodness Gang Seed Pots.

Do you remember when I posted a blog about Lidl giving customers a free seed pot every time they spent twenty euros?  Well here are the Cucumbers.  We harvested and ate the first one today!

 A Cucumber resting on an upturned plastic plant pot.  This is to stop it rotting on the ground and hopefully keep the nasty slugs and snails at bay.  You will notice the blue slug pellets sprinkled around the plants.  We found thirty slugs and one snail the other morning.  I think their eggs must live in the soil.  Also the regular watering makes the perfect conditions for snails.
 Cucumbers and Tomatoes growing up bamboo canes with old Budweiser cans placed on top to prevent anybody poking their eyes!  Notice how healthy the plants look.  That's my cow poo and Nettle tea mix.  One pint pot of the plant grog to a full watering can of well water does the trick.  Who needs to buy chemical Tomato food when you have your own organic plant fertilizer?
Our first Cucumber of the season.  It tasted like, Hmm..., Cucumber.  We ate it with a tin of  Chopped Pork and Ham.  Not Spam but a very nice Dinner.  

Anyway well done Lidl for encouraging folk to grow vegetables.  We are really pleased with the results.

Remember  this?

Monday, 30 July 2018

"Can You Ride Tandem?"

Rachel's been drawing some wonderful pictures (camper vans on precarious pinnacles..) of the Tour De France on her blog over the last week or so.  I mentioned the following TV chimps advert on a comment last night.  So I wonder if this jogs your memories.  I couldn't believe it was made in 1971!  

I think its time the chimps were back on our screens, don't you?  Wonderful tv advert nostalgia!

Sunday, 29 July 2018

"Samosa Pie For Tea. Save All Your Samosas For Me."

We have been watching Nadiya's Family Favourites on BBC 1 on Monday nights, I think?  
The other week Nadiya made Samosa pie.  So we (the missus) made a Samosa pie for our tea.  If you go to BBC Food you will find the recipe there.  

I did help grow the peas, podded them, grew the onions and peeled them and I am still looking to purchase an onion gas mask. 

We didn't have a cake tin so we used a loaf tin instead.  Here's how it turned out:

We also had enough ingredients left over to make a small Samosa pie.  I really liked the pie.  The rest of the family thought it a bit too hot and spicy.  The wife says I have an asbestos mouth.  Just because I had hot spicy sauce with my pie!  

I left the small pie for a couple of days and it seemed to mature and tasted even nicer.  I love spicy food.  Just wish I could make a good Donner kebab.  Donna kebab?  Who's she! We make Shish kebabs but never really mastered a Donner.  Have you?  

Monday, 23 July 2018

Under Our Hedge.

Apparently this summer, 1976 and 1941 are the warmest summers on record.  Although I believe it was 33 degrees in Kilkenny in 1887 or something?  

There are hose pipe bans in Ireland if your on mains water.  Luckily for us we have our own private well.  I dowsed it with my dowsing rod and the well borers drilled it 220 feet.  It's that good a well that it comes up the pipe without the need of the pump and we had to dig a trench and pipe a drain for it.  

Some of my new plant cuttings have still suffered and some have given up the ghost.  So the other day I decided to place some of them in trays on tiles underneath one of the hedges.  The cuttings, new plants love the shade and I water them every morning and night.

How do your plants cope with the sunshine?  The weather is supposed to change to more typical Irish mizzle this week.  The plants and the fields will return to their Emerald green and we can start moaning about the rain.  

Coca Cola Cans Plant Pots.

I am always short of plant pots.  I spent a rainy yesterday (all of it)in my poly-tunnel office,sieving my homemade compost, potting up and...