Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Update 04 20.04.2010

Volcano Affects Progress.

This weeks ´pro´ helpers Ma and Pa Vicker could not make it due to volcanic activity in Iceland. This is a real shame because we have our own eruption happening here, although it is in the form of excitable birds including bee eaters, nightingales and hoopoes, spring flowers and buzzing bees (who need to watch out for bee eaters)… no volcanic ash to report. This means more work for us, but things seem to be in hand. Last week friends JP, Cate and Lily B came to help out and soak up some early rays. We planted more potatoes, later than anticipated due to yet more rain, which we can’t complain about as water is essential
to the success of our work here. We have started transplanting plantitas from the semilleros and we have already started losing hours to the delightfully therapeutic task of weeding. Not to worry though, the days are getting longer and it’s great to be busy outdoors until past 9pm.
The fruit trees are in full blossom but it is interesting to note dramatic changes against last year, the apricots seem to be having the year off, whilst the greengages and plums are looking really strong. Fingers crossed for buckets of fruit soon. We have planted lots of fruit tree saplings, planning a future of prolific jam making. But most exciting is that it looks likely that our first
bees will arrive in the next week or so. We have a new hive and we have finally made contact with an experienced apicultoro José Cárceles. José lives in Alburquerque, he is an experienced herbalist, Reiki expert and has an enviable allotment (we used to covet cool bars, restaurants and shops, now we have allotment envy). Originally we wanted to visit self sufficiency gurus Mario and Carmen at Alternatura to talk bees and get started but a combination of rain and closed campsites meant we had to abandon the trip. Still, we hope to visit soon as their farm and way of life is a great inspiration for us (Mooch assures us). Our bees are coming from Salamanca so they should be quite cultured, let’s hope they appreciate our location and learn to make the most of life on the frontera and bring us the best Portuguese and Spanish nectar.

Everything in blossom.

Lake full.

Eating fresh spinach, lettuce, rocket, pak choi and coriander from the garden (yes bringing it indoors, we don’t sit and eat in the garden).