As the weather has turned cooler and cloudy and I've hurt my finger... dont all weep at once... I decided to come in to blog instead of being good and staying home and working..
So... after a lot of discussion last night, weighing up the good and bad.. we've decided to make a real effort this winter to not rely on the freezer so much for our supplies, although I still will freeze all our surplus, I plan to grow more variety during winter so I have a better selection of fresh food in the ground to pick than having to always use our frozen stuff. It'll obviously be better for us, but will mean more work throughout the winter when I usually have a rest, it will also mean more nutrients needed for the land, so I will be planting a lot more Comfrey in the spring for next years manure, but for this winter we may have to invest in a little organic fertiliser.
In the ground now, we have.. cabbage, we always have plenty nowadays... and Im going to plant another 20 or so over the next few days, plus in two weeks I'll plant more turnip greens to ensure a nice continuous crop. The onion seed is just showing its head so I'll plant somemore within a few days, although again they wnt benefit us till spring. The swedes are pretty poor, and very few showing, but I'll try a few more in another place. I'll plant up some baby leeks over the weekend too, so that will help us for early spring, I must look into what else is will grow over winter, not just for spring, but to eat during winter..
Next season I plan more squashes, our crop this time (35) was pretty poor compared to the mammoth 146 we had the previous time... but I have new seed and a couple of new varieties now to try, good ones that will store for winter.
I must look at ways of storing food that wont take up freezer space, Rik has promised me a large drying rack for sundried tomatoes and figs, the pasta sauce this year is excellent, as is the roasted tomato puree, so we'll keep that going next year.
Im looking forward to the sweet chestnuts coming ready, they seem very late this year, still green and not even cracking yet... I look forward to cosy nights by the fire roasting them... plus I cook them with dried pulses into a sweet tasty lunch ...
I think its important for our frugal living aims to utilise the different ways of storing food instead of using the freezer, which uses power, I dont really expect to ever do without it, but you never know!