Saturday 2nd April | Fern Verrow

Saturday 2nd April

What a fruitful and varied week we have had. New workers Jo and Ed have arrived and have hit the ground running so to speak. An introduction to the animals heralded the arrival of five new piglets, first time mum and babies doing very well. Our favourite ewe, on Monday was looking as if she was in labour, turned out she had a prolapsed cervix, poor old girl, but the lovely vet arrived and worked his magic and made things more comfortable for her. We are having to keep a close eye on her and will be having to be hands on literally once her twins(? we hope )are born over the next few days. The new potatoes were planted on Tuesday, quickly followed by onions and lovely shallots. Just as we finished’ the much needed rain began to fall in soft heavy droplets… we were very happy and relieved to have done some sowing and planting. Today we were on the flower beds, cultivating, weeding and planting summer bulbs of pom pom dahlias and tall gladioli.

The hens are laying well and we will have a record number of eggs to sell this week, one of the reasons being that Jane is currently obsessed with finding the so called odd places that the hens like to lay in. Being as free range as they are, and naturally woodland creatures, this can be rather a mission- under brambles, in hedges, tree stumps and frequently on the straw bales. Much clucking alerts us to the hiding place, and the race begins to get the egg before the dogs steal them… that explains the dog’s shiny coats!

Sausages this week are for sale in the arch, bacon, gammon and cooked sliced ham next week. Vegetables from us are rather thin on the ground, we will have lovely rhubarb, swiss chard, red russian kale some herbs including chives, coriander and chervil. Our biodynamic colleagues are bringing us some spring onions, sorrel, baby spinach and some radish. Salad crops this week will be from the Grange ( a camphill community near Gloucester). Organic purple sprouting and lots of citrus from our wholesaler too. Asparagus season is coming, and we are hoping to have a good supply by the middle of April, from an organic farm near to us here. So, much to look forward to in the coming months.

More lettuce plants for sale this week and Demeter seed (demeter is the certifying body for Biodynamic farmers) In two weeks time we will have several varieties of french bean plants for you to plant in your gardens. Tomato plants in a few weeks time, and some beautiful Columbine plants, one of our favourites that grow wild around the farm.  We collected seed last year and have produced many plants. They are truly beautiful dainty fairylike flowers that grow well in semi shaded areas, so perfect for a London garden.

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