The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


The long awaited Digging up Danny’s Potatoes Day

Posted in Cottage tales | 10 comments

The long awaited Digging up Danny’s Potatoes Day

Within a month it was clear who was going to win the Grand Potato Challenge. The challenge wasn’t really a fair test – in the end as we realised that the earth in John’s border was far inferior to the friable soil in Danny’s newly dug potato domain. In fact by doubling the size of our kitchen garden this year we were forced to see how poor the soil is in the original borders. The runner beans have flourished but only because they were planted over a deep trench of semi rotted fruit and vegetables and the water butt watering...

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Edible garden update: September 2009

Posted in Vegetables | 7 comments

Edible garden update: September 2009

Even though we bought a budget greenhouse that arrived in a long thin box and caused a lot of head scratching and cursing, I love this small haven. I hang out in it all year – I suppose it’s the place where I go to dream. When the seeds start to germinate everything seems possible. Of course growing fruit and veg can be a bumpy ride. The only pests that we were not plagued with this year were aphids. This was down to an explosion of ladybirds encouraged by the June sunshine. This September we are awash with vegetables and fruit. Life seems...

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Joanna’s food: Lemony courgette salad recipe review

Posted in Reviews, Vegetarian | 13 comments

Joanna’s food: Lemony courgette salad recipe review

I harvested our first courgette of the year this morning. We have several courgette plants growing in large pots and a few scattered at the corners of borders in the kitchen garden. I’m not very keen on courgettes per se but have discovered that they are great added to a slow cooked spaghetti sauce or the filling for a Cottage or Shepherd’s pie. So this year we are growing them in earnest. They can be blanched/cooked and frozen for use during the winter months. Courgettes are quite pricey so we’re longing for a glut. I have been planning...

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