Category Archives: permaculture

Strawberries and Wine

Going out to supper on Saturday night

strawberries and Wine

I took a posy of honeysuckle, lavender, both purple and white, and Lady’s Mantle, along with a bottle of Pinot Grigio (my favourite), strawberries and a bag of salad from our local Farm Shop

I had written to The Watercress Company (also local) asking about their packaging see below, with their reply

 

Sent: 28 June 2018 13:17
To: info@thewatercresscompany.com
Subject: packaging

Hi,
I love your products and like to buy local produce when I can.

Please could you find an alternative to plastic for your packaging.
I understand there is a clear film made of a vegetable product that is fully biodegradable.

Many thanks

Sandra Dorey

On 28 Jun 2018, at 13:22, James Harper <james.harper@thewatercresscompany.com> wrote:

Good afternoon Sandra,

Many thanks for the great feedback. We have just moved into a fully biogradable bag this week so your timing is spot on!

Where do you normally buy our salads from?

Kind regards,

James

 

I was so delighted that I just had to take this biodegradable bag to my friends so that they could sample the salad.

Now to tackle the strawberry suppliers!

Do you have any flowers from your garden to pop in a vase – if so why not join us at Cathy’s weekly garden party over at Rambling in the Garden, where her Vase is reflecting the heatwave we are currently enjoying in this part of the world.

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Waste

teabag art, greetings card, re-usable greetings card, collage

lend me your ‘shell-like’

this girl dislikes pink

innovate for her

~

Ronovan’s Haiku Prompt words this week are PINK and SHELL.

Yikes – how to marry that with what I had already planned for our Photo Challenge prompt of WASTE.

It is the extra creative challenge I like to give myself each week. Well Miss E does not like pink – I know that card does have a bit of pink on it but ……. hey! I did my best!

~

Anyone who has been reading my blog for a while knows I’m an obsessive recycler AND like to try new crafty things, so this week’s Photo Prompt is right up my street!

~

Life-cycle of a tea bag once it enters my house:

It sits in its box in a cupboard full of all manner of black, white, green, herb and fruit teas. I have at least 12 different varieties in there.

Then in it goes –  into my favourite mug

Nevis design from Dunoon

This is a mug from Dunoon. I wanted a big white bone china mug. I contacted Dunoon and asked if I could have the Nevis Design in plain white – I could! and for about £10 cheaper than the decorated ones – I got two. I LOVE them. ❤

After first use the tea bags sit in the little coloured dish to be used, three together, for another cup.

I told you – obsessive recycler!

And now, courtesy of Pinterest, I have discovered there is a whole new world of art materials to be explored – used Tea Bags! I was astonished to see how much amazing art has been created with used tea bags. You can see some examples on my Pinterest Page, ‘Art Tea’.

Of course I had to give it a go.

So instead of going into the compost after their second use, the tea bags are now emptied and dried. (The leaves still go in the compost) My bean-sprouter works well as a drying rack.

drying teabags for tea bag art

Cutting or tearing some and leaving others as two ply paper

prepared tea bags

Now ….. how to turn them into art ……

 

A bit of collage using some paper napkins and some hand and machine stitching.

The circular tea bag has a picture of a cup stuck on the inside with Modge Podge and  is re-stuffed with a little wadding. I downloaded the picture of the cup from this Education Site

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I’m wondering about this art form – it nudges towards the “just because you can, do you think you should”. I tried putting it on canvas to go with my ‘making art with found and discarded objects’ collection, adding and expanding on the Beach Clean Art theme. Using waste in art.

I’m not sure it stands up as an artwork so I turned it into a greetings card, with packaging paper put between the layers to stiffen the card so that it will stand upgreetings card of teabags with machine stitching

A little pocket for a gift (in this case a fresh teabag) or message. Then it can be recycled once more and re-used as a card with a different message in the pocket.

And then I realised there was a certain person about to have her 10th birthday – perfectre-usable greetings card, tea bag art

She was thrilled with it and her friends intrigued.

I’m really not sure if my experiments will produce ‘art’ that I feel worthy of exhibiting , but has been fun to try and I can’t throw a teabag away at the moment –  I’m amassing quite a collection, so I’ll have to come up with something arty to do with them.

Update

Coincidentally, I’ve just seen that there is a programme on BBC2 tonight about the making of tea bags: http://www.radiotimes.com/tv-programme/e/fsq8rq/inside-the-factory–s3-e1-tea-bags/

and here is the programme on BBC iPlayer:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b08ywhdn/inside-the-factory-series-3-1-tea-bags

The sheer scale of tea bag production is mind boggling – and I’m shocked to discover that 25% of the materials used to make tea bags is plastic – Yuck!

 

 

 

IaVoM: Honeysuckle, Alchemilla Mollis and Feverfew

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In my vase this week is honeysuckle, feverfew and a froth of Lady’s Mantle.

Pop across and Ramble in the Garden with Cathy to see her Vase and those from gardeners across the globe.

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This honeysuckle pleases me hugely because I grew it from a cutting. The flower is not as beautiful as some honeysuckles but the scent is magnificent, especially in the evenings.

Look how it has grown! All from a cutting, isn’t nature amazing! I grows through a Clematis Montana, which flowers in the Spring.

Joining Cee’s Flower of the Day.

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I have been having A-Good-Clear-Out in the kitchen, thus ticking off a few of my 17 for 2017 Aims/Goals/Challenges.

Goal: Sort out 13 shelves, boxes, cupboards or shelves. I have done 5 this week (that’s 12 altogether!) – Well done me! 😀

A. I have a 3 drawer filing cabinet with files stuffed with papers from goodness knows when  – I’ve been through all three drawers and discarded everything that is no longer needed, either shredding the paper for compost, (P) or rolling it into fire-lighters (P)

B. These shelvesDSC_0214

needed painting, and so did the wall behind them.

Do you recognise some vases from previous IAVOM posts?

How was I going to get the shelves off the wall by myself?

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(C. see that desk top – I could not have shown you the toppling heap of stuff that was on there – far too embarrassing  – number 3 surface cleared!)

I could have asked a neighbour to help, but I get a kick out of ‘The Power of One’ solutions! So ……

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I put chairs piled with stuff to rest the shelf on as I undid the screws – it worked.DSC_0265

A clear wall, with a mist coat painted onto the raw plaster. I’m using some of my Mum’s old paint – Dulux Barley White, it must be ancient but it still seems ok. (P)

I have quite a few things that need sanding so I treated myself to a Detail Sander and sanded the shelves

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I do love a gadget. It cost just £30, well worth it!

The sanding was needed to create a surface for the Dulux ‘Quilted Calico’ Eggshell to key in to

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And then of course there was D. Under the Table to deal with – a whole tub of used flower pots – DSC_0023luckily I have found a Garden Centre, Groves, about 20 miles away that will recycle them (P) in the  Pot to Product Scheme. 

I used to live near there, so I can combine the trip with meeting up with old friends. (P)

And the last of the 5- E. The top of the filing cabinet which houses the paper shredder and piles of office related detritus (no ‘before’ picture here either!) A broken child’s chair is acting as a shelf (P)

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There are several great ideas for using chairs as shelves on Pinterest – here’s one

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And a vase of flowers – just the thing to celebrate the transformation.

I removed over 40 old redundant business cards from the letter rack. They have gone in the collage cupboard and might be used as collaged tags in journals – oh dear – not thrown away yet then!

Have you noticed a few (P)s  in the text – can you guess what they stand for?

Vase on Monday: Hellebore

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Each Monday Cathy invites us to find something from our gardens to pop in a Vase.

Her vase this week has inspired this post as she used some old glass inkwells.

The bottles in my photograph were found in a bank by my house circa 1974. I had masses more but have gradually downsized the collection with each successive house move.

The ‘vase’ contains hellebores that grow in my roadside border under an espalier pear tree; a variegated arum leaf and some twigs from a pretty little hebe given to me by a neighbour

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The bottles sit on a shelf in my bedroom that was in dire need of dusting and sorting out – a perfect candidate for the 17 for 2017 List in which my target is:

“13 – drawers, cupboards, shelves or boxes sorted out.”

The bedroom was created in the roof space

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I wanted the sides to be left open to give a greater feeling of space

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I had such a battle with the builders to keep this space open. I really like the way it gives the room size, and provides a place to keep the things I love having around me. Like a mini art gallery space. The photos below are looking one way then the other – you can see it had become a bit jumbled.

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When the shelf was cleared there were pale marks where items had beendsc_0055-1

What to do?

Turn to Permaculture : “THE PROBLEM IS THE SOLUTION”

The problem is the effect of light, the solution: make use of this with some leaf shapes cut out of paper.

Maple Leaf shape.

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Each time I clear the shelf I will move the leaf shapes and gradually I will have a pattern of various shades of wood – eventually it will look like the dappled light through a maple tree – well that’s the plan anyway.dsc_0148

Also joining in with Cee’s Flower of the Day

 

Scraptastic!

Title pinched from Mrs Snail. Way back in July 2015 Mrs Snail was using Permaculture Principles in her scrap-busting projects and making some fun hats. Using all sorts of bits and pieces of yarn left over from other projects, she tied them together and wound them into a ball and crocheted hats to sell at a Permaculture event.

I thought this was such a FAB!!!!! idea and started tying lengths of left over yarn together, no ends to sew in. My hoarding paid off!!! Hurray!

I thought I would make some seat covers for Pippin, the caravan that sits in my garden.

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which is great place to keep the Legodscf9309

But Pippin is a bit old and scrappy as it is, so I don’t think the seat covers made of odd bits of yarn works very well in there. I think granny squares in Cath Kidson colours might look better and smarten the caravan up a bit. What to do with what I have made so far….dscf9298

I just love the random colours and texture this createsdscf9302

I unravelled a cardigan that never gets worndsc_0001

and added to the seat cover to turn it into a blanket. dsc_0004All sorts of yarns in every weight were added together, and I used the cardigan yarn for the border

It has made a snug and cosy blanket that will go off to Syria in November.

I’ve also made a scarf, much loved by Master R.dsc_0001-1

 

 

Thursday

DSC_0018Anyone who has been following this blog for a while will know how I like to make everything as multi-functional as possible – it is a Permaculture thing and Permaculture is the closest thing to a religion I have.

Imagine my delight when I realised I could combine Thursday Doors, Three Things Thursday, Cee’s Which Way Challenge and Odd Ball Challenge AND recommend some simply splendid people and places – my cup overfloweth with golden delights.

Three Things Thursday:

Emily shares “three things that make me smile: an exercise in gratitude – feel free to steal this idea with wild abandon and fill your blog with the happy”

So here goes:

1.Yesterday I took Miss E to one of Sewchet‘s wonderfully empowering sewing workshops. Seeing her glee at having made something she can actually wear was a joy. She learnt so much.

2. Meeting Sheila of Sewchet. Meeting fellow bloggers is a fun, enriching experience. I have met Mrs Snail, Judy of Edwinas Episodes, and now Sheila. What a wonderful community it is. …. and there are plans to meet more bloggers brewing.

3. Meeting an old friend after a very long time and having such a brilliant time at Durlslade Farm, art gallery, cafe and sculpture garden. Go if you can!

This is my favourite photo of the day which I think has a touch of the Edward Hopper about it. ‘Hopper’ turned positive and optimistic perhaps.

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The Garden and Gallery are absolutely amazing and inspiring, and the food in the café is delicious.

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The next photo from this garden is for Cee’s Which Way Challenge

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and there were plenty of contenders for the Odd Ball Challenge at this fabulous gallery

How about a giant steel bucket full of shiny pots and pans

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or a steel tree

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with pots and pans for leaves. I love that it is set against this ancient farmhouse and looks a lot like old mulberry trees in gardens of houses this sort of age.

Here you can see the two sculptures against the old buildings and the gloriously blue sky – what a day!DSC_0017

And another door to the farmhouse for Norm’s Thursday Doors.DSC_0020 You can stay there! Pricey but just take a look at the website to see how wonderful the interior is.DSC_0019

I did have such a magical day – and have loved sharing it with you.

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Store Secret

As Denis and Cathy thought, my secret is a cupboard that is in fact a log store.

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A clever idea I saw many years ago in a friend’s house , and now I have been able to recreate it.

A crafty trick!