The Domestic Princess and her Larder

(19 Posts)

Hallo , anyone fancy joining me in my quest to be a Domestic Princess , stocking my larder with lovely home made preserves , baking bread and growing vegetables ?
About 6 months ago we moved house and now have about 10 acres ( fields ) a large greenhouse and an over grown vegetable garden .
We've grown courgettes , tomatoes and runner beans ( don't mention the disastrous potatoes )
What shall we try next ?
I've made jam , and have some sloe gin and blackberry brandy on the go .
Any tips and all chat welcome .

HelgatheHairy Fri 28-Sep-12 14:38:08

Me, me, me. I'd like to join even though I have no clue what I'm doing. I live on a farm but its currently all being grazed by cattle and my "garden" is just topsoil. Missed the weather to set grass seed this year so have to wait till spring now.

I'm here to live vicariously through other people!

longjane Fri 28-Sep-12 15:16:20

what a lovely idea

don't really have a garden as it is a dogs den really
but do go walking near a river so it is sort of countryside
most of the black berries have gone here and i have no idea what a sloe looks like
re garden

i like the idea of fruit bushes that don't need much work and plants like herbs that you can just tear bits off .

longjane Fri 28-Sep-12 15:16:21

what a lovely idea

don't really have a garden as it is a dogs den really
but do go walking near a river so it is sort of countryside
most of the black berries have gone here and i have no idea what a sloe looks like
re garden

i like the idea of fruit bushes that don't need much work and plants like herbs that you can just tear bits off .

A sloe looks like a black olive , but is like a tiny sour plum
sloe
We picked strawberries for our jam at a pick your own farm , that was good , none of the hard work actually growing the fruit , turn up with a basket on a nice day and pick as you like !

We might try growing new potatoes in a big tub for Christmas .

Ooh helga actual cattle ! Do you milk ? Or beef ?

LadySybildeChocolate Fri 28-Sep-12 15:44:41

Sounds great. My garden is small and I can't dig it up. You can plant veg in all sorts though, so I'll find a bin/tub/planter or something.

HelgatheHairy Fri 28-Sep-12 18:11:04

I don't actually do anything, except live here. It was my Dad and Uncle doing the farming. Beef cattle, herd of 50, incl bull, atm. However my uncle recently passed away and my Dad is 85, so it's looking like it might be the end of the farm for now. They're my Dads though so he gets to decide what he wants.

Have discovered I have a sloe bush though!

longjane Fri 28-Sep-12 23:19:54

thanks for showing me a sloe will look out for one on my many walkes

Lavenderhoney Sat 29-Sep-12 04:05:29

I like your threadsmile live in middle east now and miss my garden, greenhouse etc so much it's a source of arguement with dh. You are so lucky, thought of a blog too? Like helge, can live vicariously through you.

I've gt some fabulous old book in storage I picked up at jumbles and fetes, all about eating and storage from the hedgerow. I made blackberry wine once which was lik port only better- no additives cept sugar. I kn you can make elderflower champagne. And my mil buys trays of tomatoes end of summer and pulps them and stores them in jars in he huge walk in larder. It looks amazing, and she uses jars she collects all year. She makes fig jam too. I have all her recipessmile

Asparagus to grow next? , have you planned out our garden with plots and a rotation program?

mathanxiety Sat 29-Sep-12 04:59:25

When I was growing up dad kept a lovely veg and fruit garden. We had blackcurrants, redcurrants, whitecurrants, gooseberries, raspberries, loganberries, strawberries (alpine), rhubarb, apples (bramley seedling and cox's orange pippin), pears, greengage and other plums whose name I have forgotten (blush) -- they had a golden fruit with red and gold skins -- and on the veg side we had runner beans, broad beans, carrots, turnips, parsnips, new potatoes, cabbage, kale, purple flowering broccoli, spinach, onions, asparagus, parsley (and I used to grow radishes).

There was an elder tree near where we lived and dad used to hoist us precariously up to the top of the wall behind which grew the tree and then encourage us to reach in as far as possible to get some of the elderflowers for champagne. He once slammed on the brakes on a little Irish country road when we were returning from a holiday and shouted 'mushrooms!' -- led us all into the field beside the road armed with beach buckets and whatever other containers we could find and we picked until we could find no more room to put them anywhere in the car. That was the occasion when I decided to see for myself what would happen if I put my hand on an electric fence smile

We were once swimming at a beach south of Dublin when a school of mackerel drove a school of smelts into the waves and pretty much onto the shore. Almost everyone on the beach grabbed buckets from children's hands and waded into the waves, scooping up dinner 'on the hoof' as it were...

vvviola Sat 29-Sep-12 05:32:35

We're moving this week to a new house where I'll have easy access to the garden/deck. I'm already thinking about herbs & tomatoes in pots on the deck (just coming into spring here)

I can't mention it to anyone though as I am notoriously bad with plants & have spent years saying I don't "do gardens". So I will be roundly teased & laughed at unless it's all presented as a fait accompli smile

I'm also going to look into "pick your own" fruit things. DD1 would love it & then I can make jam from the pickings.

In theory hmm

It's surprising how many of us remember our Dads And Grandads veg gardens and allotments .
We live now in my parents old house ( we bought it from Dad ) the veg garden is terribly overgrown, we just managed to clear one square to grow beans and potatoes , and one square that I'm making into a cutting flower garden .

Gardeners World magazine is brilliant help ( also has good offers , I had 24 lavender plants for £4-90 , I think there's an offer like that most months )

I know nothing about the Middle East . I'm assuming you can grow plants and veg there , just differently from here .

Especially here , I'm in green and pleasant Wales !

Karbea Sat 29-Sep-12 08:46:55

Right I'm in!

I don't have acres, and I never grown anything in my life, but we've got room in our garden, but I've no idea where to start. I did used to make jams, preserves etc but probably haven't done for about 10 years!

So what are we doing first?

Today I'm planning on making this
runner bean chutney

TwllBach Sat 29-Sep-12 13:41:15

I want to join and am in Wales too! I bought a load of seeds and planted them this year, but the only things that came up were the oriental poppies sad and I planted all sorts of veg. Is there anything that I can plant now?? <keen>

TwllBach Sat 29-Sep-12 13:42:21

I am contemplating blackberry picking (not in my garden) but I had a disastrous affair with blackberry jam last year, involving a slow cooker, normal sugar and a very runny, sticky mess. If you can give me ideas of things to do with the blackberries then I will go and pick them!

blackberry brandy
This was so nice , very drinkable .

I don't know what to plant now , I keep googling and only come up with winter lettuce ! I don't want salad in the winter .

mathanxiety Sat 29-Sep-12 18:57:46

You need to get a load of manure and start conditioning the soil before you can think of a garden. Conditioning means digging and turning over the top foot of soil with a spade or cultivator, and then going over it thoroughly with a sprong so that it has few large clods. Take out big stones while you're at it. The soil needs to be aerated and fed basically. You need to check details such as whether your soil is very clay-ey, and remedy this.

This is a great site for all sorts of helpful info on the basics.

Also, if you are in an area where there has been heavy industry or the chance of lead contaminating the soil you need to consider raised beds and buying topsoil.

Lavenderhoney Sun 30-Sep-12 10:52:51

Twil you can freeze blackberries in little bags for adding to granola or Yogurt, just take one out the night before. Blackberry and apple crumples nice and freeze able too.

No garden here, just lots of herbs on the windows. I do miss my gardensad

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