The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Garden Peas: fresh and frozen

Posted in Vegetables | 3 comments

Garden Peas: fresh and frozen

  Three years ago we discovered that frozen “Garden Peas” are much tastier than frozen “Petit Pois”. They are cheaper too. The shops are now full of fresh peas in the pods. They look so tempting but I’ve always found them tough and disappointing. I reckon that they need to be really fresh or frozen fresh to shine in the taste stakes. This year I have grown two types of peas – both biodynamic from the Demeter range at Lunar Organics. A sugar snap pea (Sugar Dwarf Sweet Green) and a more traditional pea (Hurst Green Shaft). A week...

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Growing vegetables all year round. January 2010 update

Posted in General care, Vegetables | 13 comments

Growing vegetables all year round. January 2010 update

  It’s still very cold here. There was snow yesterday and a bit more last night – just a sugar frosting. So pretty if you can stay indoors tucked up beside a glowing woodstove. The fur lined wellingtons that my mum gave me last Christmas have really come into their own this winter as they have grippy soles and don’t slip in the snow and ice. The brassicas are much sweeter since the hard frosts and the Brussels sprouts are to die for. Completely different from the ones available in the shops. Today I’m planning to pluck some of the...

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Brussels sprouts and kale from the garden

Posted in Vegetables | 17 comments

Brussels sprouts and kale from the garden

  Danny adores Brussels sprouts. He’s always buying little packs of them and squirreling them into the fridge. Then I have to eat them. And I don’t like them apart from creamed sprouts which are a bit figure challenging. So I decided to grow some Bedford Fillbasket this year. Surely they’d be better than the commercially grown ones? They look great too, tall and statuesque. Inca walks between them and disappears in the mini forest. I plucked the first sprouts a couple of days ago and they were tasty. Much sweeter and crisper than the...

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The intriguing pc code

Posted in Cottage tales | 6 comments

The intriguing pc code

A couple of days ago I noticed that Danny was entering some sort of system on our calendar. The letters pc followed by a number. He’d started this on May 13th and the numbers were gradually rising each day. Was this a good or a bad thing? What did pc mean? I was very curious indeed. We share this calendar but I thought I’d give D a bit of space rather than dust off the thumbscrews. Eventually he would spontaneously explain what these annotations mean. We were engaged with the potato count in his border this evening. It’s become a...

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