This is Karen's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Karen's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
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
Yes, yet another fungi here at Struan Farm! This time it's the "Common-basket stinkhorn," Ileodictyon cibarium. I noticed three of these growing under the redwoods at our entrance to the new(ish) house. We've had so much rain, and it's been unseasonally warm, so the fungi just seem to keep coming... Continue reading
Posted 6 hours ago at Struan Farm
John and I went off on a short road trip this past weekend to pick up the bare root Luisa plum trees I'd ordered from McGrath Nurseries in nearby Cambridge. They're a commercial nursery, so we had to order a minimum of five trees, but they're the only nursery here... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Struan Farm
I came across this huge fungi (?), right inside our entrance gate at Struan Farm! It's been an interesting season for them, both in terms of variety and numbers. It's the size of a human head, no joke, and also looks somewhat "brainy." I wasn't able to identify it in... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Struan Farm
A few weeks ago I rescued a kingfisher who got stuck in the back of our garage here at Struan Farm. I christened him "Freddy." Now we have a pair who've decided to make our front lawn and orchard part of their territory. We've been watching them perch on the... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Struan Farm
We had viisitors coming for morning tea a few days ago here at Struan Farm. It's that time of the year when there's not much happening in the gardens. The hellebores, which save me in winter, haven't started to bloom as yet. However, this year is somewhat different--although we've had... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Struan Farm
John and I were momentarily diverted from our gardening and mowing efforts at the Homestead a few days ago by an unusual bird call. It sounded somewhat like a tui, but different, and was coming from one of the camellias in the roadside wooded garden. Off we went to investigate.... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Struan Farm
In NZ the phrase "being cheeky" means being smart or sassy in a nice, teasing way. But here at Struan Farm we're giving this phrase new meaning--I've recently discovered beef cheeks. Much of the thanks goes to MasterChef Australia, where I've watched many contestants slow roast them to rave reviews... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Struan Farm
Clifford really misses John when he's away from Struan Farm. It's most evident when the lord and master returns to the castle--I hear these happy yips, unlike any other sound Clifford makes. I know they signal John is home. I certainly don't get those same yips out of Clifford when... Continue reading
Posted Jun 19, 2016 at Struan Farm
My intent when I started baking these "Dream Bars" was that I was making them for a friend. She is going through a bit of a health crisis at the moment, and I thought they might lift her spirits, make her smile. We used to eat/devour these at Smith College,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 17, 2016 at Struan Farm
In a quest this week for a new winter pudding recipe I stumbled upon "Cranberry & cinnamon bread & butter pudding" in Sophie Gray's great cookbook "Fill the Tins." Everything I've made from this book has turned out well, and this was no exception: And not a bad way to... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2016 at Struan Farm
Must say that the new gardens I'm meant to be planting this winter at Struan Farm are taking time. I'm making progress, but it's been slow going. While some of this has been due to rainy weather, a large part of it is that I simply haven't been able to... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2016 at Struan Farm
I came across yet another good winter salad recipe this past week, "Raw Winter Salad with Mandarins & Almonds," in the Winter 2016 issue (#24) of Nourish Magazine. Finely sliced raw brussel sprouts, fennel and broccoli are tossed with slivered almonds and mandarins (I used my Zyliss mandolin to slice... Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2016 at Struan Farm
Despite my recent crush on Posh, that adorable baby goat we've adopted out, I haven't forgotten about our priorities here at Struan Farm: the lambs! John, Clifford and I went out for a walk a few days ago to catch up with the pets and other lambs. My objective was... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2016 at Struan Farm
I called in to see "Posh," the orphaned baby goat we rescued a week or so ago here at Struan Farm. We adopted her out given my travel schedule, which meant I couldn't be around to deal with the frequent bottle feedings she would require. This is one seriously happy... Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2016 at Struan Farm
We had a birthday in our family this week. Even though I wasn't attending the celebration, I was charged with making the cake, you know how that goes? And so I baked Annabel Langbein's "Ultimate Chocolate Cake" from The Free Range Cook. I decided that I'd only make one layer,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 10, 2016 at Struan Farm
I'm working to adjust my perspective on persimmons, a fruit that has been in the same category with tamarillos and feijoas in my book. I haven't been too sure, really. Love the trees, know birds love them too, so have thought about adding one to the mix at the orchard... Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2016 at Struan Farm
I was walking up the drive a few days ago here at Struan Farm, looked up at our Monty's Surprise apple tree and saw a flash of red. Very quickly I realised it was the last, very late apple of the season. Nice surprise, Monty, when I least expected one! Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2016 at Struan Farm
Guess who I bumped into in the Cottage Paddock the other day at Struan Farm? My girls, our former pet lambs, all of them! Rosie: Ruby: Pip: And last but not least, Pepper: Rosie is the most socialised, still. I see her often and make an effort to stop and... Continue reading
Posted Jun 7, 2016 at Struan Farm
Sunny day in Piopio, finally! And you know what that means, right? Hopping to it outside in the gardens and yard at Struan Farm, at least for me. I started with our main entrance gate near the Homestead. Here's before: And here's after: At least it looks like an entrance... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2016 at Struan Farm
John and I were walking around Struan Farm over the weekend when we came across a wee orphaned wild goat. As you will know, feral goats are serious pests in this neck of the woods, they damage native bush and of course, gardens. Neither of us are particularly keen on... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2016 at Struan Farm
We've started to crack into provisions I made over the summer with veggies from the garden here at Struan Farm. These include the first of several frozen batches of "BBC Tomato Soup." As you might expect, we're into soup season now, especially when the rain has been blowing sideways. The... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2016 at Struan Farm
Two-three years ago we fenced in the large tawa grove behind the new(ish) house at Struan Farm. Essentially this enlarged one of our existing native bush reserves on the property. We did so because the tawas are rather special, very old native trees, and we wanted to keep the sheep... Continue reading
Posted Jun 2, 2016 at Struan Farm
There's been quite a lot of sitting around, having cups of tea, baking, needlepoint, naps, etc. recently here at Struan Farm given the endless rainy weather! At one point I looked over at John's feet, and saw this: His much loved, well worn felted wool slippers. I inquired as to... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2016 at Struan Farm
You will surmise I've had too much time on my hands with all this rainy weather? Desperate times call for testing out new recipes, it's not like I'm going to clean house all day here at Struan Farm! And so I made a "roast beetroot and brazil nut salad" from... Continue reading
Posted May 31, 2016 at Struan Farm
It's been a rough few weeks weather-wise here at Struan Farm: rain, rain and more rain. Even the lambs, who are otherwise pretty staunch under most circumstances, have had enough. They were recently moved into the house paddock, during a particularly heavy downpour. At one point I felt there were... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2016 at Struan Farm