Saturday, 14 February 2015


Jethro Tull says in his book The Horfe-Hoeing Husbandry or an Essay on the Principles of Tillage and Vegetation regarding weeds (my copy published in 1733) - 

"Plants that come upon any Land, of a different Kind from the fown or planted Crop, are Weeds. . . . All Weeds as fuch are pernicious, but fome much more than others; fome do more Injury, and are more easily deftroyed, fome do lefs Injury and are harder to kill; others there are, which have both thefe bad Qualities."

So here we have brambles in winter in the far corner of the garden. There is a large patch of them beyond the den and R has been steadily clearing these. 

Brambles are definitely pernicious as well as tenacious and just plain nasty. I have been tidying the ditch and hedge lower down and am covered in scratches. They cling to clothes and tangle in one's hair. Of  course they do not have the nastiness of the stinging nettle nor the plain bloody mindedness of the creeping buttercup nor the won't go awayiness of bindweed but of all the weeds in the garden the bramble has it. The stems arch over and where they touch the ground they root. 
Ah! Yes, I hear a cry, but they have blackberries - not in our wood they do not, not a one.

 So to winter and grey and grey and grey.
The woodland then can be grey, the sky is grey (my beard, should I grow one would be white), the local landscape is grey.

Even the paving is grey, all right with a little white from snow or hail, and it can make interesting abstract patterns but most of all it is GREY!

What about garden foliage? Well so much of the winter foliage can be grey. I admit that there is some green and . . . enough moaning done!
Time to stop moaning and look at our lily - Colour!

And time for another of Mum's recipes.
So here we go -

I found a page headed 'Cocktails' and thought of you all but it was just prawns and stuff.


Pastry - 7 oz lard to 10 oz flour. Handle as little as possible.

1 lb sausage meat, 
1 cooking apple,
2 medium sized potatoes,
1 onion,
pinch of sage
A little milk or egg.

Line 8 inch tin with pastry. Slice half potato, onion and apple onto pastry. Mix sausage meat and sage and place in tin. Then place other half of apple, onion and potato on top. Cover with rest of pastry and brush with milk or egg.
Bake 15 m minutes at 450F then 45 minutes at 375F. (It can be cooked longer at a very low heat if desired.)
Serve with gravy or savoury sauce.
Good hot or cold.
(She does not mention seasoning so I leave that to you.)

Makes the old tum rumble - time for a snack!

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