7 September 2014

Mutant Ninja Tomato Plants

This morning, as I was outside feeding the chickens and moving their run around the garden, I noticed what I thought were some very large weeds. Now this is not entirely unexpected as my garden is sort of overgrown again. I haven't really had time to mow the lawn in the last few weeks because I have been sewing like a maniac to keep up with the market stall. On closer inspection, it turned out that the "weeds" were not weeds at all, they were tomato plants. Three of them in fact and the only way I can think of them having appeared there is that the seeds must have been eaten my the chickens, who have a particular fondness for tomatoes and when the seeds had been pooped out, they have managed to germinate and grow into fine healthy plants!! They even have flowers on. I am totally amazed because the tomato plants I have been growing all summer are now almost finished but these wild, mutant ninja plants are flourishing. 

If you look closely, you can just see the flowers on this next picture ..... amazing!

The question now, is, what do I do with them? Is it possible to dig them up and keep on growing them or will they not produce anything because it's the wrong time of year? Have any of you had anything like this happen before? I have heard of people having rogue potato plants growing from a spud that has not been dug up and of course apple trees sprouting up from discarded apple cores but has anyone ever had tomato plants growing in weird and wonderful places??? 

1 September 2014

Holly Berries in August!

When I went to the train station yesterday, to pick up one of my daughters who has come to stay for the weekend, I was stood waiting for the train to arrive when I saw this.

A holly bush with berries already appearing! Now, this morning, I did a little bit of research on the internet and found that a holy bush normally gets it's berries in mid autumn, not late summer as we are supposed to be now. I was amazed. You can even see that some of them are starting to turn red, this isn't supposed to happen for ages yet. I know that autumn is coming early this year because the blackberries that we usually pick at the market have been out and ripe for at least 3 weeks now but I had no idea just how weird the weather is actually being. It's as if Mother Nature is totally confused and I get the feeling that it's this odd weather that is responsible for my nesting and hibernating instincts kicking in. Having said that, the weather down here in Cornwall is turning nice again. So confusing :-)

Time for a walk on the beach I think :-)

I found this awesome piece of driftwood but sadly had to leave it behind as it was impossible to lift and it wouldn't have fitted into the car. I really wanted it though :-)

And I love the colour of the bright green seaweed against the rocks

My daughter discovering why I don't wear my Joules wellies ....... they have holes in them and have done since the week after I got them. Beautiful but useless ...... the wellies not my lovely daughter!!

My gorgeous hanging basket is still going strong.

29 August 2014

Three Dogs and a Hedgehog

As you will know, if you read my blog, I have lots of animals, including 3 dogs. Metro is a 10 year old collie who I re-homed from a rescue centre 8 years ago. He is the loveliest, sweetest, gentlest dog you could ever imagine, who prefers sleeping on the sofa to running around in the field, hates getting wet, hates being muddy even more and he sleeps with me on my bed at night. 

Then there is Levi. He's a 7 year old Dalmation who we got as a cute little teeny puppy. He's mad and boisterous and his tail never stops wagging. He's an incredibly sweet natured dog who loves to play fetch although it's somewhat hit and miss as to whether or not he will actually bring the ball back to you, he will chase after it for hours. He has only 2 speeds, 8,000 miles an hour or fast asleep and has the attention span of a gnat!!

Photos with Levi in them are always a blur I can never get him to sit still long enough to get a decent picture 

Indie and his bestest buddy Levi .... another blur :-)

Lastly, there is Indie. A 4 year old Alaskan Malamute. He is cuddly and affectionate, doesn't know his own strength, regularly falls over his big, hairy feet and for such a big dog with a massive bark he's a big old scaredy cat, scared of his own shadow.

Indie loves water ..... especially bubbly bath water 

Now, last night, as I took the dogs out for their final trot around the garden before bed, I discovered the cutest little hedgehog sitting on the patio. Amazingly, the dogs all reacted differently to the little hedgehog but all acted true to their nature. Metro wandered over and gently licked the startled hedgehog on the end of it's nose just as it curled up into a tight little ball, Levi charged past it, ran round in circles for a couple of minutes and then charged off having been distracted by a bat flying overhead and Indie took one look at it, tucked his tail under his bum and ran back inside, refusing to come out until I had relocated the big, scary, spikey thing to the top of the garden.

Cute, isn't he :-)

27 August 2014

A Room Full of Smoke!!

Well, in order to try and appease the hibernation yearning, I had a good look in my food cupboards and began to compile a list of all the things I needed to stock up on. I then took my list off to the shops and started the mammoth task of filling the cupboards. As a rule I try and buy local as much as possible which, to be honest, is really easy for me because I just buy it at the market where I have my stall but, there are things like pasta and rice that I can't get from there that I have to go to the local supermarkets to get. I'm quite fortunate in that I live quite close to a couple of big shops and so I visit both in order to get the best bargains on offer because, lets face it, there is no point in paying more than necessary for things if you don't have to. Anyway, shopping done and stored away I then made a list of the things I wanted to make to fill up the freezer.

This morning, I was busy making more cakes and pies and casseroles ready for the freezer when I thought it might be a good idea to light a fire in the living room so that when I finished cooking, I could go and sit down in the warm and have a nice cup of tea. I lit the fire, popped the fire guard in front of it and went to check on the cakes in the oven. When I came back, the living room was full of black smoke which had blown back down the chimney and into the house. Try as I might I just couldn't clear it without opening all the doors and windows as wide as they would go but, in order to do this, I had to round up all my cats and take them to the spare bedroom because they are indoor cats and the windows have window locks which only allow them to open a certain amount.

So, after herding 7 cats upstairs and wrangling them into the bedroom, I flung open all the doors and widows and finally managed to clear the smoke in about 5 minutes. In the middle of all this, one of my neighbours banged on my door with the electrician, to have a look at their water pump and give a quote for some electrical work that needs doing. The neighbour's pump lives in a pump house in my garden where the borehole is, along with the pump that serves my house so, I pointed out where the pump lived and followed them over to make sure everything was ok. I was slightly miffed and more than a little concerned when he started poking around and tugging on random wires before commenting that the whole thing looked as if it needed replacing and that my cable was looking a bit dodgy as well. He then gave my cable a massive tug and a wiggle and asked if I'd had any trouble with the water pump shorting out. It was obvious that he was angling for more business and if he had caught me on a normal day I would have politely pointed out that I hadn't had any problems with things shorting out and that I'm of the mind that if it's not broken then there is no need to interfere but, as I was mid crisis, with a house-full of smoke and he kept on tugging on my cables I'm afraid he got a snippy reply of "well I'm sorry but I'm not having it done at the moment and could you please be careful and not damage my cable". I wouldn't mind but it wasn't even my pump and cables that he was supposed to be looking at.

He gave me a most unpleasant look, gave the cable another hard tug and put the lid back on. I have to say, I'm hoping that my neighbours don't use that particular electrician because I'm not sure that I trust him around my electrics! As for the chimney, I'm sure it's just the wind blowing down the valley the wrong way but before I light another fire, I think I'm going to get the chimney swept just be sure there aren't any blockages up there so ....... I guess I will be freezing for a while until I can get it sorted.