Tag Archives: cuttings

Parcels, Plants and Popinjays

It was a reasonable day at work. We didn’t have many parcels to do and the ones we had were easy to pack and went to simple addresses.

We had several customers and a sprinkling of phone calls plus a couple of late orders.

You couldn’t really ask for more.

Until early afternoon. I’d just spent half an hour loading details and photographs onto eBay when I pressed the wrong button and, as you’ve probably already guessed, wiped it all.

So I had to plod through it all again. It’s not a good feeling doing it twice. Unfortunately, and I really hate to admit this, my last act on Monday afternoon had been to wipe it off too. In other words, I ended up doing it three times.

There must be a way to stop losing my work like this, but I still can’t work out how to do it. I’m adding new pieces to old listings so it isn’t as straightforward as starting from scratch.

I don’t feel bad about making mistakes, but I do feel bad about making the same one several times.

Things became more light-hearted when I started answering comments. I noted, whilst doing this, that I had made a couple of typos when adding tags. Writing THree Little BirdsĀ isn’t particularly amusing, but mis-spelling foraging as faraging did bring a smile to my face.

Foraging is, as you know, collecting wild plants for food. Faraging, possibly derived from the name Farage, is a word just begging for a meaning. It has several if you check it up but they are all made up by people like me. Well, like me but without the sparkling wit…

Faraging should, I think, be a word that indicates the ability to build a career on a single issue and a dash of personality, but free of the taint of actual ability, a bit like a modern reality TV star, and I think we all know my view of them.

There is a Seventeenth Century quote which I used to use in my re-enactment days – “Loud voices and empty words. So quoth the popinjay.”

It could do with some rewriting, but I think it conveys the general idea.

I’m going to start using it in that context and see if it catches on.

If it does, and I become rich and famous as a result, it will be a prime example of faraging, and I will become a noted farager.

There are many examples of names being used this way – Boycott, Quisling and Adonis are other examples. These are known as eponyms, which I should have known really, as I have seen the word eponymous often enough. It’s strange how some things pass you by.


Streptocarpus grown from leaf cuttings

The photos are two of the four streptocarpus plants Julia has grown from leaf cuttings. She did it a few years ago to prove she could. As you can see, she succeeded.

Ginger, jars and jam

We’ve cleaned our polytunnel, taken a few final cuttings, caught up with some jobs that have been hanging around and done a final collection in the farm tunnel. I also took the opportunity to make ginger in syrup and wash around 50 recycled jars and bottles.

Obviously when I say “around 50” I mean 43, but it sounds better.

I’ve also made ginger in syrup.

The recipe is from the October issue of Home Farmer. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink, I don’t chase women. (That’s not really a choice, as I’m too slow to catch any, but I thought I may as well include it.) The one vice I do admit to is buying magazines on the strength of their glossy front covers. They are often a disappointment but they don’t leave me out of breath or lying in the gutter, which is more than can be said for some of my former activities…

I’m not sure what the copyright situation is regarding recipes, but I’ll stick it up on my recipe page, add my comments and see what happens. It’s quite a simple recipe compared to some on the internet, and the results look quite respectable.

This post was over 800 words with the recipe and words of wisdom on how not to burn your hand with molten jam; it’s now a more manageableĀ length (around 240) and people who want a ginger recipe or a discourse on jam burns can go to the recipe page.


Progress, phythalis and pizza

The weather is returning to spring after a short diversion back into winter and things are looking up.

Teachers seem to be springing into life too and we have quite a few bookings in the pipeline, though it’s never quite as simple as it should be, as they all think that we have unlimited days available at their convenience. Having already had to wave goodbye to one booking I don’t want to see any more disappear, particularly as they are all schools who haven’t visited before. We have a 95% rebooking rate so it’s important to get people down here, both for the experience and for the repeat business. I may be in a touchy-feely profession at the moment but it doesn’t mean I can ignore business reality.

Just checked my figures – it’s actually 94.4%. Better be accurate when there’s teachers about.

Even the Cape Gooseberry (which has so many other names) seeds have finally started to break through after a worryingly long germination. The three year old plants are coming back to life too, with a few flowers already showing.


The kiwi berries are looking full of fruit after a three year wait so this year could be a really good year for odd fruit.


I’m starting a proper cuttings diary after last year’s debacle. It was my own fault for not paying attention so simply keeping a diary should help by making me focus properly.

Finally, a picture of pizza. It’s like cats, people always seem to like pictures of cats and pizza. I’m working on getting the two together but in the meantime here’s a picture of pizza – lovingly crafted by a group of 6-year-olds.