Monthly Archives: June 2014

Farm Hands 28 June 2014

The new cafe and community building is being built so Charlie pointed out that we needed to move the farm shop. Charlie got to work taking down the shop sign using a claw hammer, putting it back up on the veranda using an electric drill, and designing the new layout of all our produce. Come in, take a look, and buy some of our tasty goods!


Livestock News


Four weeks ago we were thrilled to find out that our ducks’ eggs really were fertile. The farm now has nine ducklings who live indoors at night and come out for a splash in the sun every day. They are growing at an amazing speed, but still are fluffy. the smallest duckling with a slightly wonky leg is doing well. She is a quarter the size of her brothers and sisters, but her feet look fine now and she is growing slowly.


The pigs are all living together again after weaning – this has cheered up the sow Jasmine who hated being on her own. We are keeping the gilt (young female pig) as pigs hate living on their own and these particular pigs get on well with each other.

The sheep were shorn back in May. This is not just to get the wool off them for spinning, but also to make sure that they are free of parasites and of course not too hot. Over the next few weeks I will sort out the fleeces into different grades of wool

Juley  Community Farmer

Community Cafe Building Starts!

Very excitingly, work began on building our new Community Cafe and Training Facility on Monday. First the work men put in safety barriers along the farm yard to protect the public and animals from their vehicles, whilst still allowing movement through to the paddock andaccess to the community room and toilets.

Fencing has been put in place to protect the public from construction vehicles

Fencing has been put in place to protect the public from construction vehicles

Next the portaloos arrrived – very important to the people working the site.

Very important! The arrival of the portaloos for the construction crew

Very important! The arrival of the portaloos for the construction crew

Today, the digger has been clearing the land of rubble and rubbish.


Preparing the land for the building

Preparing the land for the building

Sadly, this also involves knocking down our popular pizza oven.  However, this will be rebuilt in the future.


Elderflower Cordial

The Elder tree is in now bloom, with beautiful, fragrant flowers. The Elder has been used as a source of food, medicine and wood since at least the time of Ancient Greece, right through to the present day, as every part is useful in some way.  Not surprisingly, it is also steeped in folklore and magical associations. For example, it was said that it could ward off evil and lightening, but it was also associated with the land of Faerie. Apparently, if you sleep under an Elder at midsummer, you would be able to see Faeries, or even be transported to their lands!

However, here at the farm we have stuck with making a delicious, refreshing cordial with the flowers.  Firstly we gathered some flower heads, and left the overnight in a strong sugar syrup, to which we’d added some citric acid and lemons. The next day we simply strained it off and ta da! A wonderful, thirst quenching cordial, packed full of Elder goodness.


Here is the recipe if you would like to make your own.

20 large flower heads

1 litre water

1.8kg sugar

85g citric acid

2 lemons zested and sliced

Warm the water with the sugar added until it is all dissolved, and leave to cool. Add the critic acid and pour over flowers and lemons and their zest in a bowl. Cover with clean tea towel over night.

Strain off through a clean cloth (a tea towel or pillowcase is fine), into clean, *sterilised* bottles. You can freeze any bottles you are not going to use straight away.

It is always very important to sterilise bottles and jars before you use them for home preserves – you can do this by running them through a dishwasher or by putting them in the oven at gas mark 3 for 10 minutes.


Bristol Green Week 2014

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For Bristol Green Week we opened up our Weekly Green Woodworking Group to anybody who wanted to see what the group gets up to on a Monday morning in our beautiful Watervole Woodland. Our visitors joined in with splitting pieces of hazel and then using traditional tools to shape them into spoons. With a campfire for a farm sausage lunch and the lovely tranquil setting everybody seemed quite reluctant to leave at the end of the session! The green wood work group meets every Monday , please email if you are interested in joining. We also have a one day spoon making day on Sat _19th July for more info.

Farm Hands, 14 June 2014

We gave straw to the pigs however Rachel accidently let out Jasmine . When we went into the pig’s pen Rachel’s foot started sinking.

Rachel went to Malawi and carried water on her head, so we thought we’d try it when watering the plants.