The old saying goes “Need to make hay when the sun shines” and that’s exactly what we are doing!
Finally after a very uncertain month of August, with no more than four consecutive days of dry weather, an indian summer seems to be settling in, last opportunity for us to make hay.
Completely organic, no pesticides, no fertilizers, let’s hope a week of looking after it will make some decent forage for the winter.
So after the rather cold month of May, and June as well actually, although it really has started to warm up the last couple of weeks, time to start eating the produce of the garden!
And the first ones to come out were the strawberries (can’t complain). Completely organic, no fertilizers, no pesticides or other chemicals (the slugs can vouch for that), they taste so good!
The crows think the same too, and it is very much first arrived first served. Haven’t had time to put the owl out yet. In fact I haven’t really kept on the top of my gardening duties, and it looks a bit of a mess (hence the lack of pictures).
But the spinach have come out, the potatoes have grown as well (above ground anyway), I have a couple of courgette plants, and I can see a few carrot and parnsip tops. Oh the peas! They look lush actually. Maize unfortunately…
I enjoy my new hobby so much, I’d recommend it to anyone. Even if you don’t have the space, I’ll add the link to a few articles about growing in pots, vertical gardens…
And before we go… 🙂
Did you know…
…strawberries are not actually fruits as their seeds are on the outside. Strawberry plants are runners, and are not produced by seeds. They have an average of 200 seeds per fruit and are actually a member of the rose (rosaceae) family.
Strawberries are an excellent source of vitamins C and K as well as providing a good dose of fibre, folic acid, manganese and potassium. They also contain significant amounts of phytonutrients and flavanoids which makes strawberries bright red. They have been used throughout history in a medicinal context to help with digestive ailments, teeth whitening and skin irritations. Their fibre and fructose content may help regulate blood sugar levels by slowing digestion and the fibre is thought to have a satiating effect. Leaves can be eaten raw, cooked or used to make tea.
The vibrant red colour of strawberries is due to large amounts of anthocyanidin, which also means they contain powerful antioxidants and are thought to protect against inflammation, cancer and heart disease.
Can’t get enough…!
“Shrink-wrapped shallots and polystyrene-packed peppers are a thing of the past at Original Unverpackt, a German concept store selling groceries without the packaging”.
Only two or three weeks ago, France announced that supermarkets were banned from throwing food away, and risked fines if they did not donate it to charities. They even obliged the biggest retailers to enter contracts with such charities, as a sign of commitment.
Despite being a fair progress, some would say quite rightfully in fact that the French Government is chewing the wrong end of the stick, since supermarkets are only responsible for less than 5% of whole the food wasted annually (I know I was surprised too, it’s the same in England, the biggest wasters… are us!).
But this story reminded me of this article below,
I personally think it’s a great idea, and I would be the first one to shop there! There has been a similar scheme launched in Brighton a couple of years ago I think, although I’m not too sure how this went…
I have tried once to go shopping and bring back home zero packaging (except for that could be recycled)… Well it wasn’t easy. Whilst I said no to extra bags (whether paper or plastic) for bread or vegetables for example (and of course I had my “bag for life” bag), things like pasta can only be bought in a shop… pre-packed. So I ended up only being able to eliminate probably just over half the packaging of an average shop…
Any of you ever been in a “zero-packaging shop”? Are you conscious of how much packaging you are bringing back home from your shopping… that ultimately ends up in the bin?
“The bankers are saying that off-grid living is now so viable that it threatens the whole utilities model. Nick Rosen, editor of off-grid.net, argues that it can’t happen a minute too soon.”
This article published in The Guardian in April last year was a liberation. From a business point of view, it proved us when times were a bit tough, that we actually were on the right track. But from a more personal point of view, in the last year off-grid living has stopped being synonym of tree-hugging hippies (to remain polite), it has become almost fashionable. The concepts of “tiny homes” and “homesteading” are now widely accepted pretty much everywhere. If you read anything specific to the renewable energy industry, the strain some put on their national grid, is a real problem, and without going completely off-grid, the only real answer is “self-consumption”.
Off-grid living is not seen as a silent protest by long-haired cavemen anymore, it has become a young and proactive development movement in which we take charge of ourselves pretty much individually but for the benefit of the rest of us.
Look After Your Planet is an off-grid living blog. Not a “how-to” guide, as we are still very much at the beginning of our journey, but rather a diary on why, how, when, where and another thousand questions. I’m looking to share our experience as much as I am looking for advice and suggestions.
We have decided to tackle the following challenges: energy and waste first, very recently (some) food, and soon to come accommodation. Future projects will address travelling, and household and personal/cosmetic products. For now…
The end game is just a simpler, self-resilient, sustainable and more responsible lifestyle.
“We” by the way includes myself, my partner in crime, a very colleish dog and a very mareish horse! (Also for now…)
I am passionate about our wonderful little planet. I am also very much aware that the vast majority of us (that doesn’t exclude me) takes it for granted. And most of all , I truly and utterly hate waste! I try everything I possibly can to reduce (and ultimately avoid) any negative impacts. I reduce, reuse and recycle, and also now (very trendy) upcycle 🙂 So in my ever-lasting quest to be as environmentally friendly as possible, I do a lot of reading, and I’ll probably be posting a few tips that I find useful.
Oh and because we’re kind of globe-trotters, I’ve also included a travel section.
So here it goes, hope you’ll enjoy the journey as much as we do!