Thursday, 25 August 2011

Silage All In, Home-drying of Fruit, Home Brewing

The last of the silage crop was brought in this week & our fodder supply for the winter is secure. The forage wagons have been cleaned and greased & put away in the back of one the sheds until next summer. Everyone on the farm is always pleased when this stage is reached & it means the weather can do whatever it likes from now on & we won't have to worry about it.

As well ensuring that the cattle have their winter feed the Farmer has been very busy harvesting our bumper crop of plums & devising ways of preserving them. As well bottling & freezing we have been experimenting with drying them to make prunes (the Farmer loves dried fruit of all kinds). To this end a number of wooden boxes with mesh bases have been constructed. The plums have been halved & de-stoned and then laid in the boxes which are now stacked on the top of the Rayburn. They take several days to dry but the end results are very satisfactory.
There is also a lot of plum wine bubbling away in the kitchen & some bullace wine too, I think. This in addition to the quantities of cider & beer that the Famer is brewing. The kitchen smells marvellous with all this fruity activity & it is producing a lot of very palatable booze at half the cost of buying commercial stuff and  with a great deal more fun. I, however, don't drink any of it!

Yesterday the Farmer & I went to Cardigan ( to buy some more fermenting bins!) and had lovely day once the 'shopping' had been done. We went down to Gwbert, which is the estuary of the river Teifi and watched the tide come in and the large flocks of swans, Canada geese & curlews gradually losing their standings on the sandbanks to the incoming waters.
We had escaped the Sons & the French Student for the day & had left them to their various employments of mechanics & the painting of gates. Today the FS has gone with one of our local vets who is a French speaking Belgian, on his rounds. It is a wonderful opportunity for him and gives him a break from having to communicate in his poor English with us & gives us a break from trying to interprete. It is a strain on all of us & we are driven at times to drawing pictures!

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