It is going to be a good year for sloes - I took this picture on my walk with the dogs yesterday just to show how heavily ladened the bushes are. Last year I made gallons of bullace gin but I think this year I will give it a miss as neither Mike nor I drink it I just end up giving it away. I just wonder if it is possible to make jam with the sloes but then again we don't eat jam either - it just seem such a waste.
Yesterday was relatively quiet once the morning chores were done I took the dogs for a good long walk and only got stopped twice to explain who and what Basso is - he really is a crowd pleaser in the dog world. Not many people know what breed he is and those that do are always pleased that they have got it right. I used the walk to practice some of his basic commands and he is learning to walk to heal without a lead which is another mile stone in his education. Dog training is much like plate spinning you have to keep returning to the first plate to keep it spinning so with dog training you must keep up the work on the basic commands even though you are adding further more advanced commands.
I managed to do some watering of the vegetables and planted up the Japanese purple stuff - I really must look up the name of it. I now have half a bed of oriental vegetables and I am hoping to get my Japanese friend to teach me some authentic Japanese recipes. On the oriental theme, today Sandi is coming and we may take a trip to Woolwich to the oriental supermarket. I need a few bits and pieces like panko breadcrumbs and fish sauce but it is just a fascinating place to amble round. Alternatively, if Sandi brings her dog we will go for a dog walk in stead and I will have to produce something for lunch.
In one half of our pond we have water lilies and plants the other half is just fish and a fountain. Over the summer the weed builds up so you can hardly see the water so at regular intervals I pull out great mounds of the stuff which I give to the chickens to pick over. This was on my list of chores for yesterday and once I had got a large armful of weed out I was struck by just how many young fish we now have. They must be happy as they are breeding prolifically but sadly it is a problem as we have far too many for the amount of water which will mean a cull at some point. This is no easy task as they the devils own job to catch we may well have to wait until we have the pond drained and cleaned to reduce the numbers.
On the way back from our walk we bought some local black cherries which I am intending to put into the ambassador cake instead of grapes then into the freezer in anticipation of visitors later in the year. However that will be tomorrows job.......