Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Garden update

I'm feeling a little bit better about our garden produce today. As I said in the previous post the potatoes are suffering from blight with the leaves starting to go black.
Although I would have liked to have left them in the ground longer to get a bit bigger I decided that I would be better off digging them up now on the assumption that If they have blight they are unlikely to grow anymore and perhaps it could affect the potatoes themselves.

As you can see I have a healthy amount of potatoes coming out and to the left the leeks and T
turnips are doing OK as well.
I shall learn from all of this and next year will perhaps stick to putting in crops that I know have done well this year plus I hope to get a load of horse manure onto the ground before winter.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Produce, or lack of it

I have to say I am somewhat disappointed in my gardening efforts this first year over here, we seem to have a whole host of things that are preventing us from being self sufficient. The one thing I am determined to do is to learn from it and try different things and ways next year.

First of all I got sucked in by the beautiful warm/hot weather we had in early March, around 22/23c some days. I started on the garden far too soon, I shall take more notice of my French neighbours next year and delay starting anything much before late April.

Our peas, broad beans, parsnips, garlic etc are not even Worth mentioning!

Another thing I have come to realise is that the row of big fir trees I am lopping off have sucked all the goodness out of the ground, I desperately need to get some manure on the ground in the Autumn and try and get some goodness into it.

A problem that I am going to have more difficulty with though is the deer, last night they grazed off the tops of nearly all of the strawberry plants and half of next year's growth of the raspberry's.

On the plus side, although I haven't got Mandy's  problem of trying to keep up with the harvest, we are at last starting to take produce from the garden most days. The turnips are doing very well and are being picked every day whilst young and lovely to eat, we have started to eat carrots and should have enough to keep us going throughout the summer and maybe the Autumn. Although the potatoes are now starting to be affected by blight, due to the lousy weather I suspect,  I dug the first of them today and they are looking not to bad.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Breath tests

As from today the 1st July it is now a requirement under French law that all drivers have to carry a single use breath test kit in their car at all times. Here is a short YouTube video showing it's use.

While it is law from today it appears that there will be a period of grace up to November the 1st until it will be enforced.
I cannot believe that these kits that only cost 2 or 3 euros can give an accurate reading and personally I think it could result in some people relying on them when in fact they shouldn't be driving.

I may be cynical  but it appears that  Mr. Daniel Orgeval, the president of the road safety lobby group that was responsible  for persuading persuaded the previous government to adopt the law is also a senior director of one of the only two companies licensed to produce the kits!