Thursday, September 28, 2006

Well I did say there would be a picture of our new Wwoof caravan and here it is! Its now a nice green colour and is situated at the top of our field with a superb view down to the woods. Facilities include a tiny woodburner, properly installed, a bed,a couch and cooking facilities, although I cannot see any reason for cooking as we feed our wwoofers very well!
We now have a large old shed base excavated ready for the rebuilding of a potting shed in straw bales.....a project for next year, the pig area cleared and refenced and lots of wool washed and carded ready for numerous projects such as wool stuffed cushions and pegloom rugs.
We are planning an introduction to permaculture course with qualified tutors for the new year so if you want to book watch this space for details!

Monday, September 18, 2006

The world is going a bit mad at the moment! I am being invited to have a stall at so many Christmas Fairs at the moment that I'm not sure if I'm coming or going! I'm starting a line in wool filled quilts for babies and will be interested to see how they sell. I am also going to be doing a lot of peg loom rug classes in the next few weeks and will be selling peg looms on line.
On the course front there will be some very interesting courses coming up so watch my website The Woolly Shepherd for more details. I have had several people request Permaculture courses and so has the local Smallholders association and to that end I am hoping to go on a Permaculture design course in the new year to enable me to teach the subject.
Our Wwoofers have been painting an old caravan that we have been given for accomodation......picture to follow!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Smallholding for beginners course - We ran another of the popular smallholding for beginners courses yesterday and whilst hectic it was very good! We had a tour of our woodland led by Pete and covering woodland management, fencing, hedges etc and talked about breeds of livestock, legislation and regs etc. We then visited Beech Hayes Farm run by the amazing Nick and Ruth Strange. They are full time small farmers with beef, sheep, pigs, poultry and assortment of other stuff! They sell all their produce direct from the farm or through the farmers markets. They work VERY hard! Tea and Somerset apple cake rounded off the day!
In the evening our shearer came to shear this years lambs before the weather gets too cold. This helps them grow and also protects against late fly strike this year and helps against early fly strike next year.
Needless to say we all slept well!
Picture is Ruth and Nick Strange

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Busy week this week! We have a family staying who are wwoofing around the country with children aged 2 and 4 They have been all over the UK since March. Also staying has been a young man wwoofing his way by bike from Shropshire to Lands end! They have so far done loads of vegetation clearing, washed loads of fleeces ready for rug making and dyeing, balled loads of balls of wool andpicked 3kgs of blackberries and we have all scrumped several kilos of apples and plums from an abandoned orchard.........we now have several years worth of jam and all for free!
The Ouessant sheep have been booked from their breeders and a ram will be arriving in 2 weeks and a ewe lamb, a shearling (one year old ewe) and a wether (castrated male) will be arriving in October. Also I have secured a supply of over 20 fleeces from Ouessants for next year. The picture shows some Ouessant sheep with a Wensleydale which is one of the larger sheep breeds.....certainly gives an indication of size!