Sunday, December 27, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

October.....getting a bit chilly....

Well after being away on a break for a few weeks it's really noticeable now that the weather is slowly turning , getting a little chilly in the evenings when the sun goes down.
Still we are determind not to light the cental heating just yet!

All the leaves are turning colour and it really is so beautiful!

Still a busy time in the garden and we are a little behind this year....
With the possibilty of a frost next week we have been digging up all the susceptable tubers like the Gladioli and the Cannas.

The Cannas have grown so much this year that we had to split them before placing them to dry pre storage!It's hard to believe that 3 years ago we started off with a gift from a neighbour of just 4 small now there must be 20 or more 'clumps' of tubers!
Great for next year!!!

We also planted out our garlic and onion sets.
With the garlic we are experimenting with 4 different types...
Some from Turkey, Malta and 2 types from Bulgaria an early and a late variety.
So we will see......

It's time also to clear up in the garden..but this will take us well into much tidying up to do....though some of the flowers are still in full bloom.
Ah well at least it will keep us warm!!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

4 years today!

Today we quietly celebrated our 4th anniversary of being here in Srebarna!

We cannot believe that the time has gone so quickly and here's to another 4 years!

We were still busy with lots of guests and Mike had the opportunity to Volunteer over in Malta with CABS. (see

We cleared out the greenhouse this week and finally harvested the chickpeas!

As you can see there were not very many.They only survived in the greenhouse, those outside did not do well at all.Although fun and interesting to grow I don't think we will bother next year.The yield was low and they took up quite a bit of space.

We did however really enjoy, or rather Mike did, making our own fresh hummous...

After eating this it all seemed worth it!

We also used up all the green tomatoes by making some fantastic green tomato chutney, it's a great way to use them all up with no waste.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

September rains!

At last after over 2 months of hardly any rain in this has arrived!
and with it everything in the garden is once again refreshed!

The little pond we made has really now turned into a little haven for all the little creatures....a bit different from it's before picture in June (see June's entry for pic)

We have been busy harvesting again pumpkins, walnuts and hazelnuts.

Some of the tomatoes are still holding on in the greenhouse though most of them are now coming to an end...

The Canna that our dear friend Friend brought over has not done badly for it's first year.It did flower lasy month with a beautiful yellow flower however even now it makes such a lovely display with it's leaves...

And now with the cooler temperatures all the flowers seem happier.....

Monday, August 10, 2009

The August heat!

With temperatures in the high 30's every day and little to no rain I am brought back to memories of last year trying to keep the garden alive!

No amount of water seems to make any difference ...yet considering all is not too bad and I have found new friends ... plastic flowers....

A cheat I know but they can, if used sparingly, look quite effective and let's face it they are no trouble at all!

I have already started to harvest.Not only to save as much as I can but by doing it now it saves time and money watering!

Also record number of guest in the guesthouse has meant that a lot of produce has been eaten along the way.....

The cherry tomatoes have all been picked to make sweet chilly chutney.
However I do not think I shall bother with this variety next year.
They took a lot of watering ....and I think that they will take a lot of time cooking too!

....tasty though and a nice change ....

Thursday, July 30, 2009


We have had some lovely guests this year in the always...
But this year some unusual ones too.....

He/She has to be one of my favourites!
This toad I found living for several days beneath the damp, cool shade of our courgettes....what a beauty!
The colours were amazing but don't really show how much so here....

Maybe it was attracted to our 'pond' which is coming along ...slowly....

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Hot hot hot!

Temperatures have again been high this year...well into the 40's!

Rain has fallen but too little in our region although some areas have had considerable amounts....

However as always the garden hangs on in there....

The first apricots from our smallest tree ....absolutely delicious!!!

The others were all picked and made into brandy 40 litres this year a good harvest for us.

Infact it seems to be the fruits that are having the best year.Blackberries are big and juicy and our new raspberry canes have even produced a little ...

So many apples that we have drafted in a few recruits to help with the picking...sorry eating.....

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Green house update

Well after a small problem with blossom end rot, sounds painful I know,
the tomatoes are going great now!

I am watering them at the same time every day and once a week with a homemade liquid feed from the courtesy of Colina my neighbour's donkey.

We picked our first 2 tomatoes today and they were yum!
Must be the donkey manure!

Other stuff is doing much better in the greenhouse too.The peppers are coming along better and the cucumbers are never ending!
Our chick pea experiment is also better than the one outdoors.

No sign of sesame seeds yet...but we wait patiently!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Getting creative

This week I have been spending some time looking at ways to add some interest into the garden.To cover up areas of garden quickly with a few plants to cut down on watering large areas.
I am not very good at this as I have difficulty thinking on a large scale.

I have used some old roofing tiles before to make the herb garden and this time have tried it to around some plants which I think looks quite effective.

I also tried making a 'pond area'.It's in it's very early stages here and looks a
little bare but with some more planting......
At the moment we have unfortunately had to place netting over the top as it's the nest building time for the paper wasps and it has been attracting them in big

But it's OK the birds still have their water dish...

My next project will be another of the round tiled design .I want to interlace 3 of them and attempt it on a much bigger scale on one of the grass areas to break it up a little......well that's if I can stand the heat at the moment!
Still no rain , almost 2 months now, dreadful....fingers and toes are crossed for next week...

Friday, June 5, 2009

Picture update of the Veggie plot

Most things in the veggie plot are happy...but some did not show at all.

The courgettes, potatoes,onions,garlic,peas,carrots,leeks,beets have all or are doing well.

However the parsnips never even sprouted! after much thought I have realised that the seeds may not have been good.I may try again but I think it might be too late now...

The outdoor peppers and tomatoes are coming along as are the aubergines and chick peas but much slower than they are in the greenhouse.

It's been too dry this year for melons and pumpkins this year but the sweetcorn is up an looking lovely and green even if it does not produce anything!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Busy again....

Things are moving so fast in the garden this year, and with June around the corner I am not sure where the time goes!

More or less everything is holding up fine in the unusual hot temperatures.For weeks now we have had temps of 30 plus in the shade.It has been incredibly dry and no amount of watering seems to make a difference.

The number of insects and birds is phenomenal though! Painted lady butterflies which are currently en mass in the UK are in large numbers here's wonderful the flowers are just teeming!

The lizards have set up their territories throughout the garden and we hope they will be breeding.This is 'Eddie' the lizard who has set up home in this old unused bee hive.Even the moles are 'behaving' themselves at present ...keeping many of the ground bugs in check and providing great potting soil at the same time!

We have worked very hard this year with the flowers in the garden trying to ensure not only constant colour but food for everyone all spring through to autumn.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Hotting up

It was 35oC yesterday in the shade so we have put the gazebo up early .....
The slpash pool is out but we won't fill it for another month yet....wait until it really heats up and then we will be glad of it!

We picked our first strawberries of the year yummy as ever....

The greenhouse is coming along.The tomatoes are getting bigger everyday and some even have fruits appearing on the already!

Monday, April 27, 2009

All going green!

Well we have had some mixed weather again but the mix of hot days with some good rain has done wonders for the garden!

Everything has turned green as if overnight.
The flowers are all starting to bloom and the veggies are popping up here and there slowly.....

Now the hard work begins but we are a little late due to the weather so May will be the hectic month this year!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Back to work!

Well it has been a slow start to this year.
Such a long winter, we thought it would never end!

Even now the weather is not 'normal' for this time of year.
It has been so very unpredictable that it has been very hard to get out and get the jobs done.
It's now April and we are busy, busy, much so that I have not been able to find time to add to the excuse I know.

A new addition to the garden this year, the greenhouse.I must admit I have never worked in one before and I have a feeling it's going to be a big responsibility already!
The tomatoes are in but because of the unusual early morning frosts they are covered inside with blankets and if I am honest don't look very happy at the moment.We will have to wait and see.

We have also been a bit creative with our herb garden this year using old roof tiles to decorate and make it a feature.
Even through the cold winter the parsley and sweet marjoram have survived which is very surprising!

Well it's back to work now...early potatoes to plant along with an experiment of chick peas and monkey nuts.....
I will update on their progress...and won't leave it so long next time!

Saturday, February 28, 2009