banner ad

DIY Projects

How to Make Seed Bombs

How to Make Seed Bombs

Elizabeth McCorquodale looks at the principles of seed bombing – a wonderful method of recolonising impoverished verges and embankments as long as the important dos and don’ts are adopted which includes which seed to spread and which to avoid! Guerrilla gardening first came to light in New York in the 1970s, when a community group […]

How to Make a Straw Bale Bed

How to Make a Straw Bale Bed

Mark Abbott-Compton from www.learn-how-to-garden.com has been using bales of straw or hay for a number of years, either to grow crops or as the framework for some quick-to-construct and cost-efficient raised beds. Here he combines bale beds with the technique of creating a layered no-dig bed. no-dig techniques to both extend his plot and use […]

How to Make a Wicking Bed

How to Make a Wicking Bed

Dave Hamilton, author of Grow Your Own Food For Free, shows how to make a Wicking container, the ideal, permaculture solution to irrigate your container plants, for next to nothing. Container gardening is a very thirsty way of growing, and lack of water is especially a problem for those growing most of their produce in […]

How to Make a Willow Plant Protector

How to Make a Willow Plant Protector

Willow remains a popular choice for making plant supports and with reason. It weathers well, is strong and rustic looking and is often used to make other garden and agricultural structures such as our practical ‘how-to’ posts on making wattles and wigwams. Jayne Neville’s willow plant protector is attractive, practical and portable. It is also […]

Building a Chicken Coop Extension

Building a Chicken Coop Extension

John Butterworth calls this extension that he added on to his chicken shed a ‘henservatory’. It’s a very simple lean-too-extension that goes on the side of a chicken hut. Instead of shutting the birds away at night, the pop-hole can safely be left open, so they can wander in and out at will, and still […]

Revamping Your Flowerpots

Revamping Your Flowerpots

That crafty art of decoupage has all sorts of applications (no pun intended). I particularly like that you can bring back to life rather old objects to make great gifts or just to have around the house or garden. I’ve used wrapping paper in the past to cover clocks and old placemats. Here I’ve used […]

in The Kitchen

‘Day Before the Morning after’ Blackberry Muffins

‘Day Before the Morning after’ Blackberry Muffins

Elizabeth McCorquodale is prolific and always provides more rather than less, so sometimes we end up with a delicious recipe without a home as the pages of her article have been filled with other equally delicious things. This time it’s muffins, and we’ve used cyberspace to make sure no one misses out. The great value […]

By September 26, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
How to Crystallise Ginger

How to Crystallise Ginger

Crystallised Ginger, like candied peel, is a cupboard essential running up to Christmas and is called for in loads of recipes. uses. Here is Elizabeth McCorquodale’s recipe for making your own. INGREDIENTS 250g  fresh ginger, peeled and sliced very thinly 2 cups sugar 2 cups water METHOD Place the ginger in a saucepan with enough […]

By September 22, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Dot Tyne’s Courgette Pickle

Dot Tyne’s Courgette Pickle

Dot Tyne, co-author of Viable Self-Sufficiency writes HF’s popular Smallholder Diary every month. This is one of her ‘go to’ recipes for using up courgettes. CRUNCHY COURGETTE PICKLE This is an easy pickle to make, and it looks particularly attractive in the jar. It can also be made equally successfully using cucumbers. INGREDIENTS (The original […]

By September 19, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Malteaser Truffles

Malteaser Truffles

Like our Custard Cream Truffles and Cherry Berry Truffles this is a spin on the traditional ‘truffle’ which uses a sachet of malteaser flavoured hot chocolate as it’s base along with a small packet of Malteasers crunched up in the ganache as well as the coating. Using these flavoured sachets is really economical way of […]

By September 14, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Custard Cream Truffles

Custard Cream Truffles

This is for all those grown-ups who have fond memories of the much-loved biscuit, Custard Creams. This is a a really quirky take on a truffle. This recipe uses biscuits to make the ganache as well as the coating. I reckon the same principle would work with that other childhood favourite, the Bourbon biscuit, too. […]

By September 14, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Winter Vegetable Chutney

Winter Vegetable Chutney

Gaby Bartai makes her apologies to the market-leading ‘pickle’ brand, but she can do better.  This chutney would go really well with Gaby’s Parsnip and chickpea rissoles. I spotted swede (referred to as ‘rutabaga’ in America) – which doesn’t lend itself to many preserving possibilities – amongst the ingredients on a long-neglected jar, and attempted […]

By September 9, 2016 1 Comments Read More →

Renewable Energy

Is this the end of Fracking…or Renewables?

Is this the end of Fracking…or Renewables?

As the UK government attempts to limit local democracy in the UK to force through fracking, and goes cap in hand to the Chinese to enable its nuclear ambitions, it seems the Americans have done a U-turn – apparently, solar and wind power are surging forward as shale gas and coal falter. It seems that […]

Anaerobic Digestion – Spreading the Goodness

Anaerobic Digestion – Spreading the Goodness

Through the process of combining biodegradable materials, a new fuel was created that produced electricity and other self-sufficient solutions. This not only saved money, but also reduced environmental impacts by making our waste once again useful. Known as Anaerobic Digestion, we saw a reduction in fossil fuel by 50% as we discovered what materials would […]

By August 18, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Going Off-grid

Going Off-grid

So you’ve heard the predictions regarding fuel shortages and you’re fed up with being held to ransom by Tom, Dick and every other fuel provider. Or you’re planning your escape to the big, green outdoors with limited access to on-grid fuel supply. Either way the idea of going off-grid is tempting to most home farmers. […]

By January 29, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
E.Coli to the Rescue

E.Coli to the Rescue

E.Coli to the rescue – probably one of the less likely phrases you might expect to come across. Universally it has quite rightly always been considered one of Nature’s real bad guys, but in the same way that John McVicar became a force for good, British and Finnish scientists have been using E.Coli to create […]

Building and Using a Solar Cooker

Building and Using a Solar Cooker

Article by Joanne Brannan June 2012 Home Farmer Many solar cookers are either complicated to construct, very expensive to buy, or suitable only for climates far sunnier than ours here in the UK. But there is one simple solar cooker design that costs next to nothing to build and works remarkably well, even here! When […]

By December 5, 2013 0 Comments Read More →
DIY solar power projects | For the shed or poultry house

DIY solar power projects | For the shed or poultry house

John Butterworth ‘sheds light’ on a simple DIY solar-powered system for illuminating your hen-house or running an electric fence. See Also: Preparing Poultry for Winter DIY Poultry House Plans Building and Using a Solar Oven   Always a drawback, isn’t it, to have a shed too far away from a mains supply? It makes you […]

By October 25, 2013 1 Comments Read More →

Crafts

Crochet Tea Cosy Pattern

Crochet Tea Cosy Pattern

If you’re going make a tea cosy, you might as well do it in true vintage style. Our special thanks to GMC Publications for allowing us to share this pattern from Tea Cozies 4 by Emma Varnam. This is a great project for using up leftover yarn in any colours which might give the cosy […]

By September 22, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Rich Moisturising Cream

Rich Moisturising Cream

You can spend a small fortune splashing out on hand cream – essentially, though, they all contain the same ingredients and do the same job – rehydrating the skin. City Cottage’s Diana Peacock makes a rich moisturising cream that uses beeswax and pure rose oil. An ingredient which is expensive but gives a luxurious finish […]

Natural Vegetable Dye Recipes

Natural Vegetable Dye Recipes

For many years Claire Boley has run workshops and exhibited her own hand-spun and hand-knitted creations, and here she reveals the exciting colours available from the typical English garden. You may also be interested in our post about dying with kitchen ingredients too. Dyeing both fleece and hand-spun yarn using natural dyestuff can be interesting […]

How to Make a Willow Plant Protector

How to Make a Willow Plant Protector

Willow remains a popular choice for making plant supports and with reason. It weathers well, is strong and rustic looking and is often used to make other garden and agricultural structures such as our practical ‘how-to’ posts on making wattles and wigwams. Jayne Neville’s willow plant protector is attractive, practical and portable. It is also […]

Revamping Your Flowerpots

Revamping Your Flowerpots

That crafty art of decoupage has all sorts of applications (no pun intended). I particularly like that you can bring back to life rather old objects to make great gifts or just to have around the house or garden. I’ve used wrapping paper in the past to cover clocks and old placemats. Here I’ve used […]

Build an Insect House

Build an Insect House

Tony Lush, author of the Haynes Garden Buildings Manual, shows how to build an overwintering hibernation place for garden insects See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/creating-a-wildlife-garden/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-help-hedgehogs/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/building-and-using-a-wormery/   Many gardens are kept unnecessarily tidy and consequently provide few hibernation opportunities for insect life. Most insects benefit the garden in one way or another, so why not provide […]

By March 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

Livestock

Asian Hornet Spotted in UK

Asian Hornet Spotted in UK

Defra have confirmed that Asian hornets (Vespa velutina) have finally arrived in the UK. Two have been found in Tetbury, Gloucestershire, and this suggests there may be a nest. This has not been located, and it is unclear how the hornets arrived. Although the Asian hornet poses no greater risk to humans than the common […]

By September 21, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Keeping Orpington Chickens

Keeping Orpington Chickens

Terry Beebe looks at the Orpington breed of chicken, a breed that came from Minorcas, Langshans and Plymouth Rocks created by William Cook in 1886. It is one of the most popular and attractive, soft feather, heavy breeds, which is bred as a utility bird for both meat and eggs. It is also a popular […]

By September 1, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Can Small Family Farms Survive in the 21st Century?

Can Small Family Farms Survive in the 21st Century?

See also: Butchering your own lamb A viable self-sufficiency checklist It will come as no surprise that small and independent family farms face considerable difficulties, and a major new independent study commissioned by The Prince’s Countryside Fund into the future of such businesses across the UK has revealed a steep decline in numbers since the […]

Keeping Goats in the Garden

Keeping Goats in the Garden

With recent interest in keeping goats we asked reader Carmel Smith shares her experience of keeping goats in her suburban garden. The other day I caught a couple of dog-walking strangers peeping through a gap in my hedge and pointing. This happens to us all the time because we keep goats in our suburban garden. […]

Building a Chicken Coop Extension

Building a Chicken Coop Extension

John Butterworth calls this extension that he added on to his chicken shed a ‘henservatory’. It’s a very simple lean-too-extension that goes on the side of a chicken hut. Instead of shutting the birds away at night, the pop-hole can safely be left open, so they can wander in and out at will, and still […]

Keeping Ducks

Keeping Ducks

Whilst keeping chickens in the garden is popular once more keeping ducks on the same basis is often considered far more difficult yet, as Terry Beebe explains, you don’t need a huge pond or land to keep them and in many instances they are proving to be better and more reliable layers than chickens, more […]

The Kitchen Garden

How to Save Seeds

How to Save Seeds

Tim Wootton guides the novice seed-saver through which seed to begin with, which simply will not work, and where the pitfalls might lie. Saving the seeds from this year’s crop for next year is a fundamental part of the growing cycle. The separation between the grower and the seed producer only really got underway in […]

By September 8, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
The Original Bramley Apple Tree Is Dying

The Original Bramley Apple Tree Is Dying

No one knows whether the chicken or the egg came first, but there is definitely an original Bramley apple tree, which can be found in a cottage garden in Southwell, Nottinghamshire, and sadly it is dying from a serious honey fungus infection. The tree – the original ‘mother’ of all Bramleys worldwide – was planted […]

How to Make Seed Bombs

How to Make Seed Bombs

Elizabeth McCorquodale looks at the principles of seed bombing – a wonderful method of recolonising impoverished verges and embankments as long as the important dos and don’ts are adopted which includes which seed to spread and which to avoid! Guerrilla gardening first came to light in New York in the 1970s, when a community group […]

How to Make a Straw Bale Bed

How to Make a Straw Bale Bed

Mark Abbott-Compton from www.learn-how-to-garden.com has been using bales of straw or hay for a number of years, either to grow crops or as the framework for some quick-to-construct and cost-efficient raised beds. Here he combines bale beds with the technique of creating a layered no-dig bed. no-dig techniques to both extend his plot and use […]

How to Make a Wicking Bed

How to Make a Wicking Bed

Dave Hamilton, author of Grow Your Own Food For Free, shows how to make a Wicking container, the ideal, permaculture solution to irrigate your container plants, for next to nothing. Container gardening is a very thirsty way of growing, and lack of water is especially a problem for those growing most of their produce in […]

How to Grow Lavender

How to Grow Lavender

Ruth Tott interviews Julia Snowball, head gardener at Yorkshire Lavender, to discover why her success rate at growing lavender has been dismal. I look in envy at those perfectly sculpted, round ‘molehill’ type mounds of lavender bushes which people have lovingly cultivated, trimmed and plucked into shape, then look down at my own spiky, woody […]

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This