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  • Writer's pictureHuttons Valley Permaculture

Pumpkins aplenty!

One of my pumpkins I had noticed was being eaten by worms and bugs and anything moving around in the soil - sure sign that it is pumpkin harvest time! My pumpkin patch did get a little overgrown during the growing season so it feels like a potato harvest - not really quite sure what I'm going to find. I think I uncovered all that were there (not 100% sure) and the count was 24 with 5 more butternuts to go. Hopefully they will ripen in time but if not, I think I have enough, and the chickens will get them! My chickens and ducks were well and truly due for a move to greener pasture and they were so excited when that happened. Lots of contented clucking and quacking. If there are any more pumpkins hiding, then this crew will have them uncovered in no time!

Another thing to do while out in the garden today was to chop up the corn stalks so they could be added more easily to the compost. It was a massive pile. When they are standing tall you don't realise the biomass that accumulates over the summer. Makes a great addition to next years fertility via my compost bin! Finally finished removing the husks from the remaining glass gem corn cobs which I'll leave to dry completely before getting the kernels off and attempting popcorn!

Not too much happening in the kitchen today. Felt I needed a break from all of that but I couldn't help but do a few things. I treated myself with some cantaloupe and my first piece of homegrown watermelon. I was a little surprised that the watermelon wasn't red when I opened it. Hadn't realised that the variety I bought as seed was a light yellow one. Tasted good but I did feel just a tad disappointed! Lesson learnt - read the information properly before buying seeds!!

Also in the kitchen I cut up my mushroom from the other day to dehydrate it and started a batch of onion salt. I've been reading an amazing book on fermenting which inspired me to do a couple of batches of apple and rhubarb ferments. The book says you can ferment anything with sugar into alcohol so I'm experimenting with honey as the carbohydrate and coconut sugar. The honey variety should kick in with it's wild yeast fairly quickly but I'm expecting the coconut sugar one to take longer as it has to rely on yeasts from the apples, rhubarb and any random ones that drop by! I'll keep you posted!!

It was a good day. The chicken move can take a bit of effort but is really satisfying once it's all done. Everyone is happy :)

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