About … Opening hours
The Big Garden (just like the Hebridean Woolshed‘s off-line ‘garden shop’) is generally open for sales of eggs, preserves, herbs and Hebridean lamb from 9am to 5pm daily, April to September (eggs available year-round). You may find us open outside those times. That said, there are only two of us and we may have to go off to clean our holiday lets, go shopping … or even take a rare half-day off! – so those hours are just a guide – we may be open earlier or later … or not at all. If you’re planning a special visit, we suggest you contact us first by email or call us on 01878 700828. This applies also to the Hebridean Woolshed‘s shop, which is just inside the walled garden.
Please respect the fact that An Gàrradh Mòr / The Big Garden is our private home: the garden is not open for ‘exploring’, and if the sign says we’re closed, we’re closed!
About … Jonathan
Author and Editor-in-Chief – The Big Garden & Croft
I was born in Somersetshire, England in the late 1950s. I worked mainly as a Chartered Civil Engineer, first with local highway authorities around the UK, but also with major consultants in UK and Europe, and then increasingly on a self-employed basis – working mostly from home. I’ve now finally retired from civil engineering and construction to spend more time on our own home-based micro-enterprises, in which I specialize in building maintenance, collecting seaweed from the shore, or clearing blocked drains. Anything in which I get filthy dirty or injured – or both. Oh, and websites and blogs too. Nearly forgot!
About … Denise
Contributor, Assistant Editor – The Big Garden & Croft
I was born in Sheffield, England, just a few months after ‘him above’. I’ve done all sorts of things to contribute to family and household, financially or culturally or whatever: Home-maker, gardener, care assistant in old folks home, domestic cleaner, factory worker, self-employed in traditional crafts of various kinds. Did I say gardener? These days my time is spent spinning and weaving, making preserves, and selling what we grow and make, keeping accounts. And gardening, of course. Oh, and doing some of the same things for our two holiday lets.
We met in the mid 1970s when under-graduates at Portsmouth, and between then and 2002 we lived in 11 homes in England, Scotland and Germany. We’ve always shared a deep interest in living sustainably, supporting ourselves as far as practicable by growing and making food, keeping livestock, making our own clothes, and also interested in literature and music, industrial and social history, and everything about the natural world and outdoors. These days we pay those pesky bills with what we earn from our two holiday lets – Eight Askernish, South Uist and Carrick – The Blue House, Eriskay, and from our spinning, dyeing and weaving at the Hebridean Woolshed, and of course the produce of the walled garden and croft.
About this Blog
The Big Garden & Croft is about pretty much everything that’s part of our lives. From the morning routine to the life-changing news, from shit-shovelling to shoe-shopping, from musing on the past to discovering new music. The subjects and mood are dictated by the seasons, the weather and the circumstances, and the tone can fluctuate from the prosaic to the poetic, the pragmatic to the principled, and from dogmatic certainty to down-right silliness. It’s our life, all of a jumble and struggling to find a sense of itself, not a finely tailored take on life, honed to please a particular target readership. You, dear reader, might not like all you find here! (No really, one or two have told us so! And, anyway, we’re not sure we like it all ourselves – or even, at times, any of it at all!) Truth be told, at times, we go right off the idea of blogging at all, and resolve to give up. In fact we’ve done just that – several times! If you don’t like a particular page we’ve written, we hope you’ll call by another time and see whether there’s something that you do find interesting or enjoyable – or both. You never know, it might even turn out to be the very thing you previously rejected!
Also at An Gàrradh Mòr :