Monday, 16 September 2013

"Ryton We Have A Weed Problem."

If you ever want a great day out.  Go to Ryton organic gardens, near Coventry.  I last visited them about 14 years a go.  The organic vegetable gardens are a credit to them.  I grow my vegetables in a similar way.  Wish I could say the same for the rest of the smallholding.
Mr or Mrs Rabbit observing the Red Shank ("Fat Hen") growing in my field of Kale.
Regular readers will know I set this field after leaving it fallow for several weeks.  One thinks that the weed seed came with the Kale seed.  It's far too uniform for the seed to have been there already.  Perhaps I should have sprayed the field with weedkiller first?  If it had been a field of grass.  One could just mow it and the Red Shank would soon disappear.  The idea was to sow some Kale seed and strip graze it with the electric fencer.  We would also place a bale of straw in the round ring feeder to give the cattle a bit of roughage to go with it.









Any road.  Me and the missus have decided we are going to hand weed the whole field.  There doesn't seem to be any other way.  Red Shank contains Oxalic acid and is therefore poisonous.  Rather like Rhubarb leaves are.  All we need now is for it to stop raining.  Enjoy your weeding.  We won't!

14 comments:

  1. That's a massive task you have set yourselves, good luck. Bet afterwards tho you will feel so proud.

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  2. A really daunting task, it looks to have a really good hold. Pity you can't borrow Steves WWOOFers for a few days.

    Looking at the amount of the stuff with the kale and the lack of it where there's no kale, I'd agree it might not be beyond the bounds of believability that the seed was indeed mixed with the kale seed.

    Is that not a hare in the picture?

    Bit brighter here today, colder and breezy but only showers.
    Gas man's coming tomorrow for annual service and fire the boiler up, could do with a touch of heating for an hour or two.

    Raggy cat in early, it must be getting cold for it. feeding well on the remnants of a roast chicken that provided 2 days full dinners and chicken curry today, still a feed left for it, a nice plump 4 lb one it was, best I've had for years.

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  3. It is a really daunting task, Ronnie. Suppose the easy way would be to top it with the tractor and topper and then spray it off and plough it in for a green manure.

    Not had time to do any more hand weeding. Hopefully it will stop raining too.

    Thanks!

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  4. Hi Cumbrian, I would be glad of the help at the moment. Mad busy trying to get the cow stall finished.

    Yes it could be an hare.

    I forgot about the beauty of gas and instant heat. We are use to getting up and having to light the range in winter.

    We had one of those mobile calor gas heaters but it's too dear. Last bottle I bought was 27 Euros.

    Was it an organic chicken. We bought one recently from M & S in Killarney and it was brilliant!

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  5. Hi Cumbrian, I would be glad of the help at the moment. Mad busy trying to get the cow stall finished.

    Yes it could be an hare.

    I forgot about the beauty of gas and instant heat. We are use to getting up and having to light the range in winter.

    We had one of those mobile calor gas heaters but it's too dear. Last bottle I bought was 27 Euros.

    Was it an organic chicken. We bought one recently from M & S in Killarney and it was brilliant!

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  6. Yes, the gas and instant heat, one of the marvels of modern technology.
    But, people might think I'm a bit strange, I really miss my open fire, thanks to smokeless zones not an option in some parts. I opened up a fireplace in my last residence, iron basket would take 2' logs, and burned just about all our household rubbish. I also really love the smell of wood-smoke.
    Gas bottles are expensive I know, but mains gas isn't cheap either. We had town gas a long time ago here, a by-product of the steelworks, with the old gas street lights were on every corner, and the house I grew up in was lighted by gas mantles until the electric came, late 50s if I remember correctly. It was cheap then, with the shilling slot meter, but the North Sea gas is getting very expensive.
    Wish I could go back to burning wood, I can forage my own logs but I've got to buy gas. As usual, now they've got everybody converted to cheap gas they shove the price up.
    Suppose the big up-side is all the work I don't do lighting and cleaning, and the time not spent foraging and sawing.

    Think it must have been at least free-range, plump legs which I doubt cage-reared birds would develope. Remember growing up, chicken was only seen on the Christmas dinner table, it was a special treat then, a nice plump capon; it seems to be a cheap option now, probably thanks to factory farming.

    Looking grey this morning, cold damp and breezy, but not actually raining. Yet.
    Waiting for the gas man, between 8 and 12 they promised.

    Raggy cat waiting to come in this morning, straight to its nice warm nest.

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  7. Could you not bale it and burn? It wouldn't tackle the roots of course. Hand weeding will take you till 2015.

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  8. I know exactly what you mean about the open fire, Cumbrian. Yuletime logs, gazing at the embers, buttered toast or crumpets on a toasting fork...

    Every new house in Ireland curiously still has to be built with a chimney. Ireland goes smokeless in 2015? We only buy smokeless solid fuel. Imported coal is full of impurities.

    I believe the local gas company used to give Creosote away for free.

    We have to leave the stove go cold because it's got an electric pump. Could do with something for the winter mornings. Electric fires are too expensive.

    I think a lot of cheap supermarkets are raised on cheap grain in Korea. They are usually only about twenty days old.

    Blown a gale here today.

    Terrier and cat were waiting at the kitchen door this morning. Must have been a rough night. Spent all day sleeping, just like Raggy cat!

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  9. I suppose you could Cro. But it's become a dear field already with fertilizer, seed and paying somebody to rotavate it. The Kale is worth saving. It's just a matter of the rain stopping and me getting my weeding head on. I weeded many an overgrown allotment with a bucket, fork and wheelbarrow.

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  10. I suppose you could Cro. But it's become a dear field already with fertilizer, seed and paying somebody to rotavate it. The Kale is worth saving. It's just a matter of the rain stopping and me getting my weeding head on. I weeded many an overgrown allotment with a bucket, fork and wheelbarrow.

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  11. Houses without chimneys do look a bit strange, but it's been the norm here for a good few years to build new without, electric heating or gas boilers with with balanced flues. A few individual designs have started including proper flues and chimneys, there's a resurgence in the popularity of wood-burners, some of the modern designs are very efficient and don't look out of place in a modern house.
    Yes, I really miss my open fire, loved to roast chestnuts under the iron basket, I got a blacksmith-made roaster specially for the job.

    Creosote was a by-product and used for all sorts of things here, there was even a tanalising plant where they could pressure impregnate the wood with creosote, made it last a long time. Horrible smelly stuff it was, everybody painted their sheds with it, getting the stuff off your hands took days (no gloves then, no H & S)

    Windy here, showers and cold. Gas man came this morning, it turned out to be a very attractive young lady, made the British Gas issue uniform look sexy. Did the job efficiently and in good time, radiators set to come on for a couple of hours morning and evening.

    Vermin exterminators must be working hard, suppose the vermin are moving into the buildings now the cold weather starting. Raggy cat following its usual pattern, diced lamb today so no remnants, the hock bone was well picked though. Asked to go out early, must have some pressing business.

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  12. Creosote is supposed to be very good when mixed with old engine oil. I use old oil to paint the cowshed roof timbers. It kills the Ringworm that lives in the wood. We also use old vegetable oil to paint the locks and catches on the doors and the crush. I use vegetable oil because it is harmless when the farm animals lick it.

    I have heard stories of people placing coal in wood burning stoves and they crumpled up like a drink tin. We have a multifuel stove in the front room (Lounge) and a Stanley stove in the kitchen.

    You are never far away from rats and mice. Cats are superb vermin exterminators.

    Nice day today. Supposed to be an Indian summer over the next few weeks. We will see.

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  13. Oh my you'll need some good music to do all that hand weeding - you could try the new artist Lorde - I'm biased because she's a Kiwi but she is getting international attention. Cheers

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  14. Thanks for telling us about Lorde, Carole. You can't beat a good song in your head when you are weeding.

    I have only managed to see one concert so far this year: Roger Waters (ex Pink Floyd) performing "The Wall." I counted 18 articulated trucks to carry his equipment and the wall itself. You don't get to see much good music living in the countryside. At least we have good old You Tube to watch and listen .

    Thanks!

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