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Karen
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
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Next in terms of my dairy free baking/cooking experiments here at Struan Farm is something frozen to serve with Chelsea Winter's fabulous "Crazy Italian Chocolate Cake." If you haven't tried baking that yet you must, seriously. There are some great dairy free "ice creams" such as Duck Island and Little... Continue reading
Posted 5 hours ago at Struan Farm
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I came up from gardening at the Homestead at Struan Farm a few days ago and spied the late afternoon light streaming into the backyard veggie garden through a window in the garage. It was almost sunset, and the golden light was hitting dark purple beet leaves and spring onions... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Struan Farm
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It's getting a bit biblical here at Struan Farm, at least in terms of pests. Thankfully no floods at the moment. We've been trapping possums daily, putting poison out for the rats, and trapping the odd mouse now and then. A week or so ago an upswing in the magpies... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Struan Farm
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A longer term project for us here at Struan Farm is a map of the property with walking tracks marked out for our farmstay guests. But that involves the naming and re-naming of paddocks around the place, something that is easier said than done. Over the past few years John... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Struan Farm
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The courier arrived at Struan Farm this week with a delivery of bare root roses I'd pre-ordered from Matthews Nurseries in Wanganui. It's also "that time of the year." In the past two weeks I've sprayed copper and oil on our 40 or so roses around the gardens, cutbacks happen... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Struan Farm
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The work on my recycled tool shed continues behind the scenes here at Struan Farm. What's particularly interesting is that whenever something has been needed in terms of tools or hardware, it's usually to be found in John's workshop. In the stash that was inherited from his father Maurie. Maurie... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Struan Farm
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It's time for me to start cutting back the 80+ hydrangeas we have in the gardens here at Struan Farm. This is an annual event for which I need to gird my loins. Like raking leaves, the job is something to be done in instalments, with multiple trailer loads carted... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Struan Farm
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Pancakes came next here at Struan Farm in terms of our dairy free experiments. John has been making his "world famous in Piopio" pancakes for breakfast when our grandchildren visit for several years now. While he's perfected his recipe we're needing to change that since it includes milk. Last time... Continue reading
Posted Jun 18, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Just because John and I were away in Nelson for Arbor Day last week that doesn't mean we weren't thinking about and wanting to plant trees, guess again! Recently we discovered a movement called "Trees That Count," which keeps a tally of native trees being planted across New Zealand. Groups,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2017 at Struan Farm
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I've been noticing the brilliant yellow ginkgo trees around the King Country this autumn, they really stand out in the landscape. And (of course) we have several here at Struan Farm. Our largest one in the Pet Paddock was planted by John's dad Maurie in the early 1950's. Turns out... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Just kidding, but I was very pleased to pick up the latest issue of North & South Magazine, NZ's #1 current affairs publication, to see an article on the recent "Running of the Sheep" in Te Kuiti. The team that wrote and photographed for the article stayed with us at... Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2017 at Struan Farm
Thanks Dermot!
Many thanks for your kind words Lizzie!
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Yep, the garden boy, one of those "pensive posts." A recent incident has had me thinking about why I write this blog about Struan Farm and enjoy doing it as much as I do. Initially I started blogging to get up the curve on technology ahead of opening our farmstay... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2017 at Struan Farm
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We had some helpers on the scene here over the weekend here at Struan Farm. They said they'd work for birthday cake, which was more than fine with me. JoJo supervised, I photographed. Granddaughters Ella and Livvy are old hands at autumn leaf duty. Everyone involved was smiling and laughing.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2017 at Struan Farm
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We had a get-together this weekend at Struan Farm to celebrate a family birthday. Son Daniel visited with granddaughters Ella and Livvy and their brother Toby. Toby is on a dairy free diet at the moment. We've done gluten free and vegan before, and I'm never one to shirk from... Continue reading
Posted Jun 11, 2017 at Struan Farm
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While we were away in Nelson this past weekend the lemons on several of our trees here at Struan Farm started to turn yellow and ripen. Seems one has to go away for things to happen. It's looking like we should have a decent crop on three of our Meyer... Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Things have been happening in the backyard here at Struan Farm, my recycled tool shed is on the way! Nephew Mike is in the process of constructing the boxing for its concrete floor, and the shed itself has been moved closer to the edge of the native tawa grove so... Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2017 at Struan Farm
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In fact, this should be called "Porridge a la Morri Street Cafe." On our recent trip to Nelson John and I had breakfast at the same cafe every day. You will know I'm a creature of habit, so that would have been my choice. But I was also wanting more... Continue reading
Posted Jun 7, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Apologies that blog posts will be a bit thin on the ground this week. John and I travelled down to Nelson for an extended long holiday weekend for Queen's Birthday here in New Zealand. It was a belated birthday and anniversary present for me, we'd needed to wait until the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2017 at Struan Farm
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We're taking an extended Queen's Birthday weekend on this end. I'll be back blogging Tuesday or Wednesday. Have a good long holiday weekend, I know I will! Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Now that our contractor guests have departed and the farmstay is quieter I am back in a major outdoor work mode here at Struan Farm. At this time of the year this means LEAVES, and lots of them. As you will know we love our deciduous trees along, of course,... Continue reading
Posted May 31, 2017 at Struan Farm
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A few days ago John had me thinking about my "pre-New Zealand" life, and encouraged me to share some of that. He thinks most people view me as a bit of a mystery, something I can assure you I'm not! After growing up on the East Coast of the USA,... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Given all the greens I've got growing in the glasshouse here at Struan Farm, we're into salads at the moment. Last night we had rocket/arugula with fresh figs from our tree, slivered almonds, avocado and grilled haloumi. I make an easy vinaigrette with fresh lemon juice, River Estate extra virgin... Continue reading
Posted May 29, 2017 at Struan Farm
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Go ahead, you can laugh! My dear husband John is taking his penchant for reuse and recycling to the extreme on this one. The old wash house from our rental property up in Papakura wasn't moved off with the house a few weeks ago to make way for construction of... Continue reading
Posted May 28, 2017 at Struan Farm