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Piopio New Zealand
Lamb wrangler, gardener & knitter
Interests: knitting, cooking, gardening, photograhy, walking the hills with Clifford our dog, watching lambs frolic, being creative generally
Recent Activity
We have Forget-Me-Nots all over the place at Struan Farm. They self-seed to such an extent that I find myself pulling them out as weeds! That being said, the delicate little blue flowers are quite lovely, and are starting to bloom right now. I also planted a special native Chatham... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Struan Farm
One of our next projects is making a nice picnic spot down at the river at Struan Farm. We're thinking about a picnic table and BBQ area right here, between/under the two trees: What do you think? John recently took out a fence and gate in this area, which has... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Struan Farm
We've decided that the outdoor shower down near Jim's Hut at the river at Struan Farm probably does need a bit more privacy than currently exists. Jim's Hut is meant to be rustic accommodation for those more intrepid spirits; however, John and I asked ourselves if we would be comfortable... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Struan Farm
The tulips and bluebells at Struan Farm's front entrance are now truly in full swing! Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Struan Farm
Nephew Mike has been working away down at the river at Struan Farm, designing and building some steps from the track near Jim's Hut down to the outside shower area. He's almost finished, has done a great job! Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Struan Farm
Yes, I'm a woman who loves her veggies. And I've raved previously about the nutritional benefits of purple and red vegetables. But these deep purple carrots I found at New World Market in New Plymouth are AMAZING! They don't turn orange when cooked, and are as deep in colour as... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Struan Farm
I've decided it's time to get the next wave of veggie seeds started in the glasshouse at Struan Farm. This includes zucchini ("Black Coral," "Romanesco," "Florence Ribbed"), pumpkins ("Musquee de Provence," "Marina di Chioggia"), spaghetti squash, watermelon ("Sweet As," an experiment), basil, and parsley (Italian, of course). I'm learning about... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2015 at Struan Farm
Well, thought this might be the solution to the scrums at the back gate of Struan Farm, trying to feed five hungry lambs their bottles. I should have known there are no easy answers. Even with John's help, only Rosie and Spanky could get the hang of drinking from the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2015 at Struan Farm
John's avenue of Awanui flowering cherry trees is starting to come into its own at Struan Farm. This is year three for most of the trees, although he added a few more to the end this past winter. He's planted them on both sides of the track that runs from... Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2015 at Struan Farm
Hooray, the kitchen and composting toilet adjacent to Jim's Hut down at the river at Struan Farm are FINALLY finished! Quite the little eco block this, with solar water heating and lights in addition to the Bioloo composting toilet. The wee kitchen has a two burner gas cooktop, adequate enough... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2015 at Struan Farm
John arrived home to Struan Farm with a visitor in his car a few days ago. It was Gandalf! Awhile ago John approached Kaipara artist Keith Bell about a commission to create a Gandalf, for whom we have quite the soft spot. You may recall that Denize Bluffs in the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2015 at Struan Farm
Right now it's pretty much spring bulbs (daffodils and tulips) for the farmstay guest flower arrangements and our table at Struan Farm, with bits and pieces mixed in. Daffodils look great in situ because of their vibrant colour, especially en masse, but up close individual flowers can actually turn out... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2015 at Struan Farm
I've been instructed by John to sleep in. The lambs have been running my life at Struan Farm, not vice versa, and it's time for this to stop. Time for tough love. I'll give it a try, and report back. They outnumber me 5:1. Rosie and Pip are quite vocal,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2015 at Struan Farm
I did think twice about picking any of the tulips just starting to pop up at the entrance gate at Struan Farm. But there were farmstay guests at the Cottage this weekend, so of course I did! Doesn't this just sing out spring? And here's a second arrangement I did... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2015 at Struan Farm
I briefly had a sixth pet lamb here at Struan Farm, but this story has a very happy ending. I was out wandering the paddock near the tawa grove over the weekend with sister-in-law Anna and a visiting friend. They heard a noise, and looked down into a plumbing outtake... Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2015 at Struan Farm
Don't laugh, but I've just set up a worm farm in the backyard at Struan Farm! I've been reading about making DIY seed raising mix; the most common recipes call for worm castings, sand, compost and coir/coconut husk. Also that vermicast and "worm tea" are really good for the veggie... Continue reading
Posted Sep 18, 2015 at Struan Farm
To quote Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz." I was musing a few days ago about what constitutes "home," and that the cliches "you can't go home again" and "home is where the heart is" are actually quite true. A few years ago I returned to my hometown of New... Continue reading
Posted Sep 17, 2015 at Struan Farm
For plums in our orchard at Struan Farm this year, that is! The good news is that our biggest plum tree is laden with blossoms, and the cross-pollinators are all in flower too. First time, hooray, this is what is supposed to happen. I'm meant to learn to bottle/can this... Continue reading
Posted Sep 16, 2015 at Struan Farm
No sleeping in permitted here at Struan Farm! Guess who I discovered on my doorstep this morning? Not the best picture, but oh dear? I was a bit late with the bottle. We have put spare posts at the bottom of the fence too. Only other option is to feed... Continue reading
Posted Sep 15, 2015 at Struan Farm
Apologies for yet another pet lamb themed post this week, but that's kinda where we are right now at Struan Farm! Rosie continues to operate as the "Queen Bee" of our little flock of pet lambs. Her latest trick is to crawl under the wooden fence separating the paddock from... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2015 at Struan Farm
Meet "Spanky," the latest addition to the ranks of pet lambs here at Struan Farm. We got a call from the neighbouring farm on Friday night. They asked us if we'd take on an abandoned ram lamb, despite our preference for ewes. We decided (of course) we would, even though... Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2015 at Struan Farm
As you might expect, I've got a long "To Do" List generally here at Struan Farm. But as spring kicks in the list grows exponentially. There's painting (garden trellises, chairs, the Garden Cottage), weeding (always!) and generally cleaning up after winter around the property. This week I tackled the roadside... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2015 at Struan Farm
It was a big day recently at Struan Farm. Rosie and Ruby went out to the paddock near our house, leaving the confines of the Pet Pen! We'd had walks in the paddock so they were somewhat familiar with the territory, but now they'll be fed from there by the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 10, 2015 at Struan Farm
I've tried to stay away from the topic of pet lambs for a few days, figuring we'd all had enough of that for awhile. However I can only do that for so long this time of year! Funny thing: ever since we had the naming contest for our newest pet... Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2015 at Struan Farm
I was rather excited to see that nine (count them: NINE) tulips have popped their blooms out at our front entrance gate at Struan Farm this past week. It's pretty early for them to arrive on the scene. Mostly purple (this must be a particularly early variety in the mix),... Continue reading
Posted Sep 8, 2015 at Struan Farm