We’ve been up to the common grazings a lot recently – whether just for a walk about in the sunshine, or to gather up some goodness of the land. Most recently, that was pony poo – for the compost heap.Continue reading →
Two forms of natural encrustation, both with their uses in traditional crafts : White Crustose Lichen ; Wild OchreContinue reading →
We’ve added a new product to the Hebridean Woolshed’s online shop : Crotal – Parmelia saxatalis, the first in our new ‘department’ of Natural Dyes.
Crotal is a dye that is especially characteristic of the Outer Hebrides.
And it’s certainly as characteristic of our croft as are the outcrops and boulders of Lewisian Gneiss that the crotal grows upon!
D > Here’s me watering the tomatoes in Greenhouse 4. Do you notice anything different? Clue : it isn’t the sunshine, or my shorts – though both are remarkable enough for April. The timber ‘exoskeleton’ around Greenhouse 4 was 15 years old, and had deteriorated a lot in the last couple of years. Rot had set in where timbers had been in contact, and moisture was trapped between them.Continue reading →
J > Mr MacGregor is so fierce that he chased away the previous Gander-in-Chief, Mr Jackson, and his wife – his own parents. Mrs MacGregor is quite different. She was hatched in an incubator from eggs bought on eBay. She has a lovely nature, and still eats from my hand, and lets me pick her up and give her a cuddle – she wraps her neck around mine. Mr MacGregor doesn’t like it, but he’s reasonable enough to understand that when it comes to the crunch, the Gander-in-Chief is none other than Mr Bridge!Continue reading →
J > At work re-painting the larch cladding, this warbler, singing from the wires at the electricity pole from which a cable runs underground to Carrick. As he sings, he turns his head from right to left (never the opposite), to ensure that any other willow warbler within hailing distance will get his message, loud and clear. Occasionally he turns around and does the same in the opposite direction, thus covering all bases.Continue reading →
D > Some while ago I pre-mordanted a few skeins of wool with Alum, storing it dry for when the Sweet Cicely came into flower. The ideal time to pick the leaves is just before the flowers become abundant, after which the depth and vibrancy of colour starts to diminish. The soft creamy yellow will be the foil to another more dominant colourContinue reading →
D > Q: Compost – or Mulch? A : It depends! We compost heavily before planting new trees, fruit bushes, rhubarb. Each winter or early spring after the first year, we top up with mixed mulch made from shredding prunings and other tougher garden waste. The main use of compost, however, is for digging into areas to be planted with potatoes.Continue reading →
J & D > We’re falling back on our own resources, as the coronavirus crisis bears down on us. Thank heavens, that we own our own house outright, we’re without mortgage or other debt, and have good fertile garden soil and all the other the resources we need to grow much of our own food, and to live healthily and well!Continue reading →
J > We have a new building under construction on our croft, across the sea in Eriskay. It’s very close to the shore : in fact it’s less than ten metres back from the high tide line, and no more than three metres or so above it.Continue reading →
There’s plenty to get on with indoors. We’re busy enough that we can leave the weather to do its thing without worrying much about the mischief it is making. There’s already a good number of tasks on our lists that have been struck through – which is so satisfying! ; and one of those tasks was to complete the artwork for our new style guides, and use those to design and print posters at various formats and sizesContinue reading →