Our Week in Pictures: 10th November 2014

Our weekly round up of what volunteers have been working on at Casalinho, our developing permaculture project in central Portugal.

Well autumn has certainly arrived! Cooler temperatures and the threat of rain have reminded of how much winter preparation still remains undone.


Left to right, top to bottom:

1) Beyonce enjoying an autumnal morning walk

2) Cobwebs on broom, bedecked with morning dew

3) Persimmons ripening. Not yet, but soon.

4) We’ve collected up the majority of the chestnuts. A pretty poor haul overall, and we’re wondering if it was a bad year all round or whether someone got to our nuts before we did. I was hoping to make a batch of flour this year, but I’m not sure there will be enough.

5) Chestnuts being sorted. The large undamaged ones will be saved for ourselves, and all the small and damaged ones will be put aside as supplementary winter animal feed.

6) Tidying up! We end up with loads of prunings and sticks built up by the goat shed. Last year’s went to top off our ‘hugel edge’ and this year we’re aiming to chip them down and allow to compost. There’s always some that it’s just too much effort to move though, and there’s nothing like a bonfire to raise the spirits on a chilly morning.

7) Smoking out the compost shifters!

8) We’re still working on the wall of the house, filling the gaps with a lime / clay / sand mixture. Unfortunately we’ve discovered that some of the holes are gigantic so work is progressing far more slowly than we’d hoped. No wonder it’s been leaking!

9) Nature prevails! Beans and beetroot seedlings appearing in a pile of discarded mulch.

10) The last pumpkin and squash have been collected up now as there’s a risk of frost. The goats are loving the greenery as part of their evening feed. We’ve been enjoying the small fresh leaves ourselves but the goats get the tougher parts.

11) I couldn’t find our white cockerel when it came to locking him up one evening. He was warm and dry, and pretty well disguised too!

12) This was a pear tree shortly before I took the photo and effortlessly sums up the danger of mixing goats with anything you’ve cultivated.




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