This week has seen Emelia give birth to our second cria of the season - a girl we have called Jeanie. Her baby was born on Sunday morning and soon found the milk bar and had a good fill.
Once she had enough it was off to meet Jenson Elspeth's cria born last week.
Then on Thursday we had this handsome chap - Jackdaw. A dark grey born to Moat Farm Gi Gi. He weighed in at 7.2kg and has symmetrical markings and 2 zebra stripes down each ear. When he's big enough he'll be able to join our grey male Isengard born last year!
New pooducers joining the herd to ensure a poo supply for Paca Punch into the future.
Whilst preparing the summer field for last year's cria, Isla, Imogen Diamond and Iced Gem, we came across this fawn sitting tight in the grass. Mum had obviously gone to forage and after taking this quick snap we left quietly. Mum returned and both have now left the field so we were able to move the weanlings in. They love hedge trimming
With all this excitement and watching to make sure the cria are thriving, it has been difficult to fit the time in the garden!
It's aphid time! We've spotted these few critters on the buds of our roses keen to suck them dry. Fortunately at this level we are able to wipe them off but if they start to multiply then sadly the sprayer may be required. If we have to then it will be early in the morning to avoid the bees.
Lupins are also prone to aphids, but these are generally managed by hand removal. Our lupins are at their best now so we want to maintain that as long as possible.
On the pest front we are fortunate to have a peach growing against a wall. Peach leaf curl is an annual problem which is caused by a fungus called taphrina deformans overwintering in the tree’s leaf buds until spring. It strikes young leaves soon after they emerge. You’ll know peach leaf curl as soon as you see it: the leaves are misshapen, lumpy, often bright red in colour – and curl up.
Peach leaf curl loves wet spring weather, so the most effective way of preventing it is to shelter your tree from the rain. It is easier if the peach tree is against a wall so you can make a lean-to from wood battens with plastic sheeting stretched between them.
Make sure you leave a gap at the bottom of your waterproofing to allow moisture to get to the roots, and leave the ends open to ensure adequate ventilation and to allow access for pollinators. Because leaf curl is a spring problem, once May comes around, you can remove your rain cover if you wish – there’s little risk of infection.
The only way is to spray in the autumn with a fungicide after leaf fall and if it is particularly bad then repeat in the spring. It's always worth the effort to have fresh peaches from the garden. here are some leaves affected by the fungus but where the leaves were sheltered then there is no damage and we have great peaches coming.
Now that the Ballerina tulips have finished their amazing display, it's time to cut off the seed heads to allow the plant to die back and put all the goodness back into the bulb rather than try to make seed. We are feeding ours weekly with 10mls of Paca Punch per litre remembering to water first before applying the solution to aid uptake.
We intend to plant more Ballerina tulips in the autumn as we loved them so much !.
I know earlier we were wanting to remove the aphids from our roses, but they are a very important feed for the birds and wildlife we share our environment with. Bug life is asking us to count the bug splats on our number plates and you can click on the image to take you to their page to get involved.
We'll soon be enjoying some delicious strawberries. These were strawed up 3 weeks ago to protect the fruit and we can't wait to get the sugar and cream out. These are being fed with Paca Punch @ 10mls per litre once a week.
After a slow start due to the cold the tomato plants are coming on. We have given them 2 feeds of Paca Punch Plus @ 25mls per litre and will now give them maintenance at 10 mls per litre weekly.
This week the tallest loofah measures in at 107 inches up from 69 inches last week. They've now reached the top of the home grown canes and so we are going to have to make a frame to support all the growth from now on.
It looks like Hector the Huntaway will take more of an armchair approach to proceedings.
We have been feeding Paca Punch and watering them from the base in the trays that the pots are standing in.
I will need a bigger stepladder next week!.