August has brought with it searing, stifling heat to top off what has been an excellent summer, and we certainly needed it. Not just to put a spring in our step with all the doom and gloom of the world but we’ve had some much-needed rain dotted throughout which has made for a great growing season. The last couple of summers were typified brown, dusty verges and scorched fields. Our fields are still green and lush and we’ve managed to make enough silage now to see us through the winter.
With autumn approaching, we are planning on reinvigorating some of our pastures as part of our Countryside Stewardship Scheme. We will be waiting for the perfect soil conditions to plant a mix of diverse grasses, legumes and wild herbs into our existing pastures. Not only will this invigorate growth to improve the quality and quantity of our feeding platform for the cows through the year but the diversity of species will have a positive impact on the ecology of our farm. Different seeding times from the mixed species throughout the summer will provide nourishment for farmland birds visiting us. It will also help build our soil structure as the deep rooting plants will help to break up our soils helping the rainfall better penetrate the land and soak in (reducing rainwater runoff) and also tapping into minerals deep from under the topsoil. It’s a win-win for us farmers and the environment which is what farming and food-producing should be about in my opinion.
As the hot summer days continue, the Garden Kitchen has really come into its own. The vibrant flower garden and the paddock with its dappled shade has been so popular and we are so grateful to see so many people coming up and sharing your visits on social media, thank you! We are also signed up to the Eat Out To Help Out scheme which means from Monday to Wednesday throughout August you get 50% off your bill up to a total of £10 per person. If you haven’t tried our awesome burgers or famous truffle mac & cheese yet, now is the time!
All the best