We have just had a delivery of local wood to keep the wood burner going...with its large window the burner is mesmerizing to gaze at...
Simple Things Magazine have featured a three page article on Wild Meadow :)
Written by Lou Archell, my favorite lifestyle and travel writer. Lou has stayed here twice now, once in the hut when it first opened and then in the cottage earlier this year. Lou and Dan were the first guests in the cottage and she was very polite not to mention in the article that the curtains hadn't quite arrived in time...
'It's a place to disconnect and reconnect. We spent our days watching the buzzards and red kites soar, and cooking on the open fire in the Kotlich...'
Our fruit trees are so laden this year, their branches are touching the ground! We started picking them by the basket full but have now moved onto a wheelbarrow. Luckily they crop at different times so guests will be able to harvest their own from now until next year. This lot will be cooked up and popped in the cottage freezer so guests arriving out of season can still cook up an apple desert :)
Maybe I'm strange but I do like changeover days - white linen on beds, sparkling taps, puffed up pillows. I always save the best bit till last - picking the flowers. At this time of year its all the lovely yellows. At the moment golden rod, flea bane and everlasting peas are taking center stage.
Three days of sunshine were forecast so Stan has just finished cutting and baling the meadow. It is great to watch and we were lucky enough to be around! We have taken some film footage but haven't a clue how to edit it and get it onto here - hopefully we will figure it out soon but in the meantime here is a photo :)
Around one acre of meadow is still left to flower for the butterflies and bees. This we will scythe later in September.
Flowers starring in the meadow at the moment include:
Tufted vetch, Meadow vetchling, Common fumitory, Red clover, Oxeye daisy, Self heal, Knapwee (from left to right)
When we first had the field it was full of thistles. Now for the first time orchids have appeared, adding a touch of glamour to the riot of sorrel, clover, and oxeyes...
We haven't knowingly planted them, maybe they have been waiting to pop up when the time was right :)
A few months ago we were contacted by Stephanie Mahon, garden editor and award winning journalist who wanted to include Wild Meadow in the 'best gardens to stay for a taste of horticultural heaven'. Well to be honest we haven't got horticultural green fingers so I was a tad surprised but of course it was our flowery meadow she was interested in!
Anyhow last weekend there we were in the gardening supplement!
Just a long shopping list for kitchen utensils and then I think we are there. (Oh and a little matter of fitting the balcony!)
The birds are singing and the blossom is out. Spring is just around the corner!
We have left parts of the meadow uncut for overwintering insects such as butterflies. This morning I noticed a group of ladybirds hibernating in the wild carrot (by which time my camera battery had gone flat so here is a photo of a ground elder seed head instead!)
With 30 fruit trees there are enough apples for guests to munch away and take plenty home with them. Not much veg in the kitchen garden though - just leeks and perennial cabbage :)
Lots of folk are booking the Shepherd's Hut for an autumn short break this week.
The hut is fully insulated, with a cosy wood burner so guests keep toasty and warm.
Poor Shepherds in the past must have been pretty chilly...
I took this photo not long ago on my way back from work - I love the countryside around these parts :)
Phew, we have finally finished lime washing upstairs - only 6 coats needed!
This is the largest bedroom, with a sofa and doors that will lead onto a small balcony so guests can enjoy the view...
Stunning sunsets here at the moment. Yesterday I enjoyed the view with the scent of peppers wafting across the meadow..
Guests were enjoying settling into the slow lane and cooking with the kotlich over the fire.
The butterflies are in full swing here at the moment. So far I have seen Commas, Peacocks, Whites, Skippers, Meadow Browns and today for the fist time I spotted some lovely Common Blues. The Blues were so nippy I didn't manage to get a good photo but this laid back Peacock was very accommodating!
Spent a lovely evening watching the sunset with the ox-eye daisies swaying in the breeze...
Well actually I was rushing around manically setting up for the next guests but the view always makes me pause, take a deep breath and relax...
Guests are enjoying harvesting delicious strawberries from the kitchen garden. A taste of the good life :)
Delighted to see our new rose plant taking off up the side of the cottage - it looks gorgeous and the smell is out of this world. We better get a move on and finish the balcony (which the rose is meant to drape over!)
Delighted to find this lovely nest in the wood store - just a few meters away from the Shepherd's Hut. We think they may be blackbird eggs...