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DIY Projects

How to Build a Cane Wigwam

How to Build a Cane Wigwam

HF contributor Mark Abbott-Compton creates a sturdy wigwam to support peas, beans and squash. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-grow-beans/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/grow-vegetables-small-space/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-your-own-hotbed/   One of the best ways to increase the amount of growing space we have in the garden is to use wigwams or frames to create a vertical growing space. These wigwams can be used for […]

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 →
How to Whittle Your Own Garden Dibber

How to Whittle Your Own Garden Dibber

Peter Benson, whittling enthusiast and author of The Whittling Handbook due to be published April 2016, shares his simple instructions for how to whittle your own useful dibber – a great first time project for anyone wanting to have a go. See also: how-to-make-a-walking-stick how-to-whittle-a-spoon how-to-whittle-a-bread-spreading-knife   This is one of those implements that you […]

How to make a Chicken Coop

How to make a Chicken Coop

Terry Beebe engages in a little DIY to create a useful multi-purpose coop to house a couple of birds, provide a backup for a broody with chicks, or even an introduction or isolation pen for new or poorly birds See also: chicken-housing how-much-does-it-cost-to-keep-chickens   Whether you are starting with chickens or just increasing your flock, […]

By February 22, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make a Three-Tier Planter

How to Make a Three-Tier Planter

Stephen Chilcott shares with Home Farmer his plans for making a three-tier planter. An ideal solution when space is short. See Also: How to Make a Chair out of a Pallet DIY Liquid Compost on Tap Invention   Planters filled with loose, friable earth, packed with nutritious compost should mean that roots plunge downwards and […]

By February 11, 2016 5 Comments Read More →
Orchard Maintenance

Orchard Maintenance

We’ve asked Paul Courtney, a local cider and juice maker and owner of Vigo Presses, for a few hints on good orchard practice to be carried out at this time of the year. See also: Planting a Micro-Orchard A Guide to Pruning   Not only did we have one of the most fruitful apple crops […]

By January 29, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

in The Kitchen

Apple Pie Cake

Apple Pie Cake

Caitriona Wallace shares her recipe for Apple Pie Cake See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/lemon-crumble-tray-bake/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/lemon-curd-bread-and-butter-pudding/   As soon as the season’s apples are ready to cook with I’m baking apple tarts and crumbles. They are such a freezer-friendly dessert to have on standby in case of visitors, or for a rib-sticking pudding when you need warming up […]

What Cottage Economy says about Making Bread

What Cottage Economy says about Making Bread

In the second part of her series on the relevance today of William Cobbett’s seminal work on self-sufficiency, Cottage Economy, Dot Tyne, co-author of Viable Self-Sufficiency,  considers the role of bread as a staple in the self-sufficient diet, both then and now. See Also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/relevance-cottage-economy-today/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-much-land-for-self-sufficient-living/   William Cobbett, author of Cottage Economy agreed that […]

How to Make a French Rustic Bread

How to Make a French Rustic Bread

Guest blogger Jules, is writer of the Butcher, Baker blog and her recipe for Pain d’Epi, a rustic, French-style bread uses very fine flour usually used in pasta rather than bread. The recipe below makes 2 small loaves and the snipping of the shape gives it that real rustic flourish. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/white-crusty-bread-rolls-recipe/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-tiger-bread/   […]

Five Must-make Wines to Make

Five Must-make Wines to Make

Wine making enthusiast and author of the entertaining blog, Ben’s Adventures in Wine Making, Ben Hardy suggests five must-make wines for the newbie winemaker. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/orange-wine-recipe/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/dandelion-wine/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/strawberry-wine-recipe/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/spiced-beetroot-wine/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/christmas-tutti-frutti-wine/   Each year I have my regulars, and these I make without fail. They are, in calendar order, Orange, Rhubarb, Elderflower, Gooseberry, Strawberry, Blackberry, […]

How to Make Pickled Ginger

How to Make Pickled Ginger

I’m a recent convert to sushi, introduced to it by my daughter, Gwen, now living in Australia where sushi is to Oz what curries are to the UK. Small sachets of pickled ginger are readily available to accompany your dish and was an absolute revelation and thankfully dead easy to make. Simply divine added to […]

Hot Cross Buns

Hot Cross Buns

Diana Peacock’s recipe for Hot Cross Buns shows just how easy they are to make. This recipe makes about 12 buns. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-crumpets/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/white-crusty-bread-rolls-recipe/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-mincemeat-chelsea-buns/ Ingredients 450g strong white flour 1 sachet fast action dried yeast 1 level teaspoon salt 220ml warm milk 100g currents 50g sultanas 25g candied peel 2 tsp mixed spice […]

By March 24, 2016 0 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

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 →
How to Make Perfume

How to Make Perfume

Here’s some instructions for making your own, unique, light scent. Do use brown bottles to store your perfume and invest in plastic pipettes as well as 100% vodka at 37.5% vol to use for the base and distilled water. Plus you’ll need various essential oils. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-real-soap/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-natural-beauty-treatments/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/make-your-own-radox/   Distilled water is available […]

By March 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
How to Darn

How to Darn

Julie Butterworth picks up needle and thread to rediscover the lost skill of darning stuff as part of our series on fixing things. See Also: knitted-slippers-pattern making-felt-the-dry-method   First, you’ll find this far easier if you invest about £3 in a ‘darning mushroom’ – available from craft stores, good old haberdashers or online – or […]

By March 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
How to Whittle Your Own Garden Dibber

How to Whittle Your Own Garden Dibber

Peter Benson, whittling enthusiast and author of The Whittling Handbook due to be published April 2016, shares his simple instructions for how to whittle your own useful dibber – a great first time project for anyone wanting to have a go. See also: how-to-make-a-walking-stick how-to-whittle-a-spoon how-to-whittle-a-bread-spreading-knife   This is one of those implements that you […]

How to make Dishwasher Tablets

How to make Dishwasher Tablets

This ‘recipe’ makes at least 50 tablets. Do leave them out to dry thoroughly – this can take 48 hours. When I made my first batch I thought they had dried out after 2 hours. They quickly crumbled and got sticky in the jar. If this does happen you can pack it back in the […]

By February 23, 2016 1 Comments Read More →
How to make a Chicken Coop

How to make a Chicken Coop

Terry Beebe engages in a little DIY to create a useful multi-purpose coop to house a couple of birds, provide a backup for a broody with chicks, or even an introduction or isolation pen for new or poorly birds See also: chicken-housing how-much-does-it-cost-to-keep-chickens   Whether you are starting with chickens or just increasing your flock, […]

By February 22, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

Livestock

Pigs in the Cottage Economy

Pigs in the Cottage Economy

As part of her series on William Cobbett’s Cottage Economy, Dot Tyne, co-author of Viable Self-Sufficiency, looks at Cobbett’s view of the pig as a source of bacon for the self-supporter, and considers his advice in the light of 21st-century tastes and technology. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/cottage-economy-says-making-bread/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/relevance-cottage-economy-today/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-bacon-at-home/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-sausages/   Pigs can be kept in […]

Auto-sexing

Auto-sexing

Terry Beebe looks at how you tell the sex of a chick and explores the curious and slightly confusing world of auto-sexing and sex-linked birds, and looks at a familiar bird with this useful characteristic – the Cream Legbar. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/common-poultry-problems/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-a-chicken-coop/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/know-your-hybrid-chickens/   The term ‘auto-sexing’ describes when pure-bred, day-old chicks can be […]

Bees MOT

Bees MOT

Claire Waring, Editor of Beecraft magaine and author of several books on keeping bees describes a typical colony inspection – an essential part of a beekeepers job in spring. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/lighting-a-smoker/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-get-bees/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-extract-honey/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/keeping-chickens-happy-in-hot-weather/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/feeding-bees-in-winter/   You have your personal kit; you have your apiary; you have your bees. Now your real bee-keeping experience […]

Beekeeping Training Courses

Beekeeping Training Courses

Learning the art of beekeeping is a fascinating past-time, but beware it can become addictive from the very first time you open a hive and peer inside! It is an interest that can just keep growing, as you begin to understand more and more about how these little insects work as an incredible and complex […]

Common Poultry Problems

Common Poultry Problems

Terry Beebe, author of The Healthy Hens Handbook gives some practical advice on what to look for if buying new stock and keeping an eye on your poultry’s health See also: old-cures-for-poultry-ailments chickens-with-dirty-bums/   Whether you are new to keeping chickens or already have some experience, it can be difficult not to get caught out […]

Could you keep a house cow?

Could you keep a house cow?

Dot Tyne, co-author of Viable Self-Sufficiency views the cow as the hub of any smallholding, and guides us through the planning and acquisition of a house cow See also: how-much-land-for-self-sufficient-living/ viable-self-sufficiency-checklist/   The house cow should be the hub of the enterprise, and her presence will set the pace of many other smallholding activities. This […]

The Kitchen Garden

Home Made Fertiliser Recipes

Home Made Fertiliser Recipes

Feed your soil and the soil will feed your plants, and if that feeding can be done almost for free and naturally, then all the better, says Elizabeth McCorquodale See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-have-liquid-compost-on-tap/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/organic-soil-improvement/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/making-your-own-liquid-fertiliser/   Look around any home or garden and you will find a host of raw materials that are perfect for being […]

How to Build a Cane Wigwam

How to Build a Cane Wigwam

HF contributor Mark Abbott-Compton creates a sturdy wigwam to support peas, beans and squash. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-grow-beans/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/grow-vegetables-small-space/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-your-own-hotbed/   One of the best ways to increase the amount of growing space we have in the garden is to use wigwams or frames to create a vertical growing space. These wigwams can be used for […]

How to Grow Vegetables in a Small Space

How to Grow Vegetables in a Small Space

Elizabeth McCorquodale considers the techniques used to maximise veg production during the war years and asks how we can learn from the techniques See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/your-guide-to-green-manures/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/mock-orange-marmalade/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-your-own-hotbed/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/vegetarian-pie-recipe/   Nobody starved in Britain during the First World War due to lack of supplies, and this was largely down to the government encouraging the gardeners […]

A Guide to Heated Propagation

A Guide to Heated Propagation

  Dave Hamilton, author of Grow Your Food for Free (almost)  understands the importance of planting seeds early to enjoy a long, rich harvest, and here he outlines the heat-assisted options available, including recycling your own waste heat. See also: https://homefarmer.co.uk/terry-waltons-germination-tips/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-grow-peas/ https://homefarmer.co.uk/how-to-make-your-own-hotbed/   YOUR FIRST DAY OF SPRING The growing season officially starts when […]

By March 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Keeping Chickens on Allotments

Keeping Chickens on Allotments

Andrew Homer considers the pros and cons of the allotment for any wannabe chicken keepers limited by space See Also: How much does it cost to keep chickens Looking After Chickens   With chicken keeping increasing in popularity, and back gardens seemingly becoming smaller with every new build, keeping a few back-garden chickens can, for […]

By February 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make a Pallet Garden

How to Make a Pallet Garden

Here’s a crafty idea for raised garden beds without the fuss from James Trundy Verrill which we feel compelled to share. Both practical and versatile this pallet garden allows you to move the pallets around at the end of each season. See Also: Raised Garden Beds It would be useless, of course, for carrots and […]

By February 17, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

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