How to grow your own food during a pandemic – anyone can do it – 10 tips

  Earth, water, air, fire:   That's it. That's the secret. That's the answer. That's how to do it. The four classical elements link closely with gardening: Soil, water. air circulation, sunlight. I read somewhere this week that 40% of Russia's food comes from small [...]

2020-11-23T10:23:00+00:004:57 pm|1 Comment

Donald Trump underpants?

  The Ranch: Toast? Via the Self sufficiency, permaculture and sustainable living group, I've managed to secure a small quantity of Orange Devon wheat grain (or berries to use the right term) from a kind bloke called Mike in Surrey. He's been growing grain for [...]

2020-11-15T14:40:36+00:0012:21 pm|0 Comments

Please sir, can I have some more?

  The Ranch: 1st November It's sometimes tricky to romanticise ordinariness. Each and every day Linda mucks out her stable into my midden - 365 barrow loads a year or thereabouts. My favourite metaphor, analogy, call it what you will, is the swimming one. The [...]

2020-11-08T12:22:49+00:004:44 pm|0 Comments

How do you fit a square peg into a round hole?

The Ranch: What's that?   Er it's a construction. What's it for? It's for putting stuff in. So it's yet another unfinished shed then? Well no, not exactly - it's for using the bricks that I'm digging up from the bottom of the field [...]

2020-11-08T12:23:28+00:003:07 pm|0 Comments

Tip-toeing, tapestry and The Law

  The Ranch: It's me and the trees. I walk through the park and they are putting on their annual autumn fashion show, swaying, strutting in rustic hues and drifting down redundant pastel leaves to provide next year's soil. They're not bothered about shutting down [...]

2020-10-25T15:07:57+00:004:49 pm|0 Comments

Medicine and Rock & Roll

  The Ranch: Once again, the weather catches me out. I'm all psyched up for settling into my curmudgeonly Autumn and Winter in The North mode - rain, greyness, drizzle, more rain, intermittent grumpiness, the kitchen warm and toasty with the wood burner, wood stacked naughtily [...]

2020-10-25T15:08:36+00:004:50 pm|2 Comments

The Common Ground project

  Birthday to birthday: I thought that the 21st of Sept was going to be our last warm sunny day of the year so I relished every moment of it, basking in the sun as much as possible whilst pottering semi-gormlessly on the farmlet. I [...]

2020-10-25T15:09:23+00:004:01 pm|1 Comment

How to start a revolution with just six people

A perfect sunny day: Monday (the 21st of Sept) was a perfect Indian summer day. It started cool and crystal blue and became warm and sunny. A gentle breeze drifted off the first pale autumn leaves from the birch, like slow confetti. I was on [...]

2020-10-25T15:10:03+00:0011:31 am|11 Comments