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DIY Projects

All your Electric Poultry Questions Answered Here

All your Electric Poultry Questions Answered Here

If you’ve not worked with electric netting before setting up a new system can appear daunting. But there is lot’s of help and advice available and the systems in use now are safe and easy to install. We’ve asked the experts at Electric Fencing Direct to answer some of the most commonly asked questions about […]

Setting up and Looking After Raised Beds

Setting up and Looking After Raised Beds

Mark Abbott-Compton guides us through setting up and preparing the ideal growing environment for your veg. One of the commonest things I am asked is, “How do I increase the amount of vegetables harvested from the garden?” Well, over the years, gardens have become smaller and smaller, and many people no longer want to devote […]

Make Your Own Seed Tapes

Make Your Own Seed Tapes

Here’s a quicky garden hack which makes a practical alternative or a great gift. Seed mats and seed tapes seem to be a popular feature in gardening catalogues but using basic kitchen items and seeds you can easily make your own. Using seed mats and tapes helps you to place your seeds exactly where you […]

By March 27, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Pallet Hack

Pallet Hack

Thanks to reader, C. Roberts, who emailed me this info on pallet deconstruction. A useful skill if you are planning to make use of the wood for projects such as our chair. Or seek out further inspiration from ideas on our Pinterest board dedicated to all thinks pallety. The different uses to which pallets can […]

By March 21, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Living with a Septic Tank

Living with a Septic Tank

If you move away to your perfect country idyll, it’s highly likely that it will have a septic tank. Heidi M. Sands ‘steps in’ with a layman’s explanation of the system and the ‘dos and don’ts’ Like a lot of people with an older property, we live with a septic tank. What this means is […]

By February 23, 2017 1 Comments Read More →
How to Make a Vertical Step-ladder Garden

How to Make a Vertical Step-ladder Garden

Making the most of a small garden or beautifying an outdoor area? Ladder stands are ‘stepping’ in to help. John Mason and the staff at ACS Distance Learning investigate and build one As gardens and outdoor spaces are diminishing in size, many people are looking at ways to make the most of their available space. […]

By February 14, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

in The Kitchen

Rosehip Wine

Rosehip Wine

Rose-hips from the wild rose (Rosa rugosa) have been used for centuries for food, drink and medicine. They can be found in many hedgerows, but health food stores and brewing shops also stock rose-hip shells, and you only require small quantities. Rose-hips don’t have much flesh beneath the skin, and are filled with tiny seeds […]

By September 20, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make Scotch-Eggs

How to Make Scotch-Eggs

The humble scotch-egg has received a bit of a make-over of late. Stalls selling all kinds are abound at food fests up and down the country sporting flavours such as black pudding, haggis and chilli have inspired me to finally have a go. I used meat out of good quality sausages, after all they’ve already […]

By September 14, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Antonio Carluccio’s Mushroom Strudel

Antonio Carluccio’s Mushroom Strudel

Autumn is here, and it’s time to explore the world of mushrooms with Carluccio’s ‘Festival of Funghi’. Throughout September and October, Carluccio’s will celebrate the mushroom season with a special range of artisan deli products, pop-up markets, with appearances from Antonio Carluccio, and a menu devoted to flavoursome funghi. Pimp your pantry this autumn and […]

By September 12, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make Jam Doughnuts

How to Make Jam Doughnuts

Not quite as daunting as thought although next time I will have a production row ready for the frying, filling and rolling in sugar at the end of the process as this has to be done quickly. You can experiment with the sugar, adding vanilla sugar, cinnamon etc at the end as well as the […]

By September 5, 2017 2 Comments Read More →

Homemade Custard Creams

If you like custard creams, then you will just love LizzieB’s home-made versions made with real proper custard! They are made with a white chocolate/buttercream filling, and will keep for up to three days in an airtight container stored in a cool, dark place. Also try our Custard Cream Truffles. Also try LizzieB’s Bourbon Biscuits […]

By August 30, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Preserving Fruit with a Steamer

Preserving Fruit with a Steamer

Paul Courtney from Vigo waxes lyrical about the benefits of preserving with his steamer A proper steamer is a real state-of-the-art bit of kitchen kit. I am not talking about one of those colander-style steamers you put inside a pan, or even a bamboo rice steamer. A proper stainless steel steamer looks a bit like […]

By August 30, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

Renewable Energy

Offshore Wind now Cheaper than Gas and Nuclear

Offshore Wind now Cheaper than Gas and Nuclear

There are consistent howls from the likes of Jacob Rees-Mogg and Owen Paterson whenever renewable energy is mentioned, together with a patronising comment that it has its part to play in the greater scheme of things, but will never meet the mass needs of the UK. It’s often suggested  that wind turbines are more damaging […]

By September 14, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Solar Power for the Shed

Solar Power for the Shed

John Butterworth checks out recent developments in solar panels as he provides solar-powered lighting for a tractor shed I wrote about using a solar panel to power a hen-house light in a previous post, so now it’s time to see how things have moved on, and to get up to date with a newer, bigger […]

By February 8, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
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 […]

Crafts

Knitted Christmas Tree Decoration

Knitted Christmas Tree Decoration

This Christmas stocking to hang on your tree or fill with a few sweets is super easy and quick to knit. Use bits of DK wool. For a three dimensional look, pad it with filler and patch the top with felt to keep it in. Using 3.75 needles and main colour cast on 18 stitches. […]

By September 9, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Pallet Hack

Pallet Hack

Thanks to reader, C. Roberts, who emailed me this info on pallet deconstruction. A useful skill if you are planning to make use of the wood for projects such as our chair. Or seek out further inspiration from ideas on our Pinterest board dedicated to all thinks pallety. The different uses to which pallets can […]

By March 21, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Getting Started on a Rigid Heddle Loom

Getting Started on a Rigid Heddle Loom

Ann Dishman is the Chair of the East Sussex Guild of Weavers, Spinners & Dyers and a gifted weaver of Scandinavian-style rugs. Here she explains her technique and how to source the material I have loved spinning and weaving for many years – not the intricate and beautiful weavings of my fellow weavers but the […]

By February 13, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make a Fancy Planter

How to Make a Fancy Planter

John Butterworth makes an attractive planter – a bit fiddly (his own words) but well worth the effort. Plus it will last a few seasons due to using good quality wood and preservative. Here’s a little project that will cost very little in materials, and it’s ideal for those long, winter days, but I have […]

By February 2, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract

How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract

So many recipes for extracts are designed to produce amounts which could keep the WI going for months on end, so I’ve reduced the typical quantities here to make this a bit more realistic for the average-sized kitchen and the requirements of a ‘normal’ person. In each case the preserving of the extract in vodka […]

By January 26, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Simple Clock Make Over

Simple Clock Make Over

I spotted this rather sad and dated clock in a charity shop, the mechanics worked fine, it even had a working battery so well worth the £2 being asked for it. Here’s how I brought it ‘back to the future’. YOU WILL NEED Coarse, clean scouring pad Wrapping paper (strong, good quality ‘Kraft’ type is […]

By November 24, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

Livestock

UK Officially Free from Avian Influenza

UK Officially Free from Avian Influenza

Nigel Gibbens, the Government Chief Vet, announced on Wednesday that the UK has now met international requirements to declare itself free from Avian Influenza, although he reiterated earlier calls for all poultry keepers to remain vigilant for signs of the disease, as there is a real and constant threat as it continues to circulate in […]

By September 14, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Double Award Success for British Hen Welfare Trust

Double Award Success for British Hen Welfare Trust

A hen charity which has saved more than 570,000 birds from slaughter is celebrating being shortlisted for two prestigious awards. The British Hen Welfare Trust is one of five charities to be shortlisted in the Small Charity, Big Achiever category in the Third Sector Awards. The winner will be announced on 21st September. Further good […]

Funny Shaped Chicken’s Eggs

Funny Shaped Chicken’s Eggs

Eggs can be different sizes, and different colours, but you would expect them mostly to be egg-shaped. However, that’s not always the case, and Terry Beebe explains why. Laying eggs is a normal process for hens, and not laying is indicative of a problem, which should be investigated. Exceptions are during the moult and in […]

Keeping Pygmy Goats

Keeping Pygmy Goats

                            Christine Fuller from Kent Smallholders Group passes on her experiences of keeping pygmy goats, describing her first encounters as well as giving some valuable dos and don’ts for anyone considering keeping them. Our first goats were ‘pygoras’ – pygmy goats crossed with an angora goat. Their names were Lillie and Rosie, and they […]

All your Electric Poultry Questions Answered Here

All your Electric Poultry Questions Answered Here

If you’ve not worked with electric netting before setting up a new system can appear daunting. But there is lot’s of help and advice available and the systems in use now are safe and easy to install. We’ve asked the experts at Electric Fencing Direct to answer some of the most commonly asked questions about […]

How to make Cider Vinegar

How to make Cider Vinegar

There are always some free apples for the taking in autumn, writes Elizabeth McCorquodale, whether from wildings, community orchards, or through social media sites like Freecycle, and making up a batch of apple cider vinegar is a cheap way of acidifying soil or making your own spot weedkiller. You can of course use it for […]

The Kitchen Garden

Chase Organics Awarded Royal Warrant

Chase Organics Awarded Royal Warrant

Congratulations to Chase Organics, producers of the Organic Gardening Catalogue and best known to gardeners and horticulturists for their extensive range of organic seeds, seaweed plant nutrition products and garden supplies. The company has recently been granted the Royal Warrant to HRH Prince of Wales. Founded by Major L. H. Chase, the inventor of the […]

How to Graft Tomatoes (and other veg)

How to Graft Tomatoes (and other veg)

Grafting brings the strong points of different varieties to a single plant – disease resistance of hybrid rootstocks and the flavour of heirloom varieties, for example. Mark Abbott-Compton investigates A BRIEF HISTORY OF GRAFTING Grafting has been common practice for centuries, but the grafting of vegetables only really took off in the 1920s. The first […]

By August 24, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Weeds – friend or foe?

Weeds – friend or foe?

Whilst acknowledging the inconvenience of weeds in a garden, award-winning gardening and environment author, John Walker, extolls their wider and more important value to our ecosystem in his latest book, Weeds. (Please see the offer at the end of this article)  @earthFgardener www.earthfriendlygardener.net Weeds are amazing. When I stumble upon a clump of creeping thistle, […]

Setting up and Looking After Raised Beds

Setting up and Looking After Raised Beds

Mark Abbott-Compton guides us through setting up and preparing the ideal growing environment for your veg. One of the commonest things I am asked is, “How do I increase the amount of vegetables harvested from the garden?” Well, over the years, gardens have become smaller and smaller, and many people no longer want to devote […]

How to make Cider Vinegar

How to make Cider Vinegar

There are always some free apples for the taking in autumn, writes Elizabeth McCorquodale, whether from wildings, community orchards, or through social media sites like Freecycle, and making up a batch of apple cider vinegar is a cheap way of acidifying soil or making your own spot weedkiller. You can of course use it for […]

Zen and the Art of Pricking Out

Zen and the Art of Pricking Out

For Elizabeth Arter pricking out seedlings is one of the real joys of gardening not a tedious task that seems to drag and drag. Instead make it a time for calm, made calmer by doing a bit of planning and using a bit of common sense. Each season I extend the range of kitchen garden […]

By April 27, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

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