Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Attracted to the wildlife.....

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Since moving to Spain we have been lucky enough to see many plants, animals and insects that we would normally have seen. Some of these we have managed to photograph whilst others evade our attempts and stay well clear of cameras. We often hear and see Deer grazing in the field beolow our garden and Wentwoth and Gawber can often be seen mingling with them hunting for mice and shrews. We have many owls and birds of prey including buzzards, kites and vultures. Birdlife in general is growing since we have attempted to encourage seed heads and insect life - keeping our plot as diverse as possible with different habitats and natural areas that encourage their visits. A small slideshow has been placed above this posting.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Pebbles and vegetables

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Luis here:
As you may be aware, I recently started experimenting with making pebble mosaics using the indirect method and the results have been very good. We collect the pebbles from the local beaches, good hunting grounds for different sizes and colours. I perfected the technique and recently had an opportunity to show Rita and Alfredo, during their visit to La Pasera, how to make this type of mosaic- they are familiar with making mosaics as the romans used to do applying the "opus tessellatum" method. Those of you who have visited us may have noticed, on our living room wall, the mosaic they made for us. The picture of the mosaic shown is part of a set that will be used as a series of stepping stones leading onto the garden tap.

The weather remains mixed and the rainfall is less, we were able to take the hammock out for a few days. In the vegetable garden, the salad crops, mongetout, beetroot, leeks, rhubarb, spinach and courgettes are doing very well but some of the casualties of the wet weather such as the onions are not doing very well and we may loose the entire crop if the wet weather persists. I have almost given up the thought of sowing more french beans as this crop likes hot and drier conditions. The tomatoes this year are doing well in spite of a rocky start. We are running a trial to see if two varieties of blight resistant tomatoes bought in the UK out-perform the local varieties. Last year by now we had lost all the tomato plants.