Now well on its way we are receiving lots of good entries daily. The Prize will be sent out to you in the first week of December, giving you time to build your crib. We are offering Three Prizes and the winners will receive a Manger each. We are offering one each of the Deep Manger, The Standard Manger and the Trough. full competition details can be found by clicking here. The first winner will have a choice of size, the second winner can chose from the remaining two sizes. The third winner will receive the remaining Trough/Manger. In addition we will add a surprise of our choice.
What to do?
Each Manger will store flat until the next Christmas but we hope that you will use yours in spring to grow something edible. Tell us what you would grow to eat next year in the Manger of your choice if you are a winner.
The Hogitat – An Alternative Place for Hedgehogs To Shelter
At this time of year, many animals want to go into hibernation particularly Hedgehogs and bonfires can provide what appears at first sight to a Hedgehog to be a perfect place. Sheltered from the wind and the rain, they crawl into warm and dry piles of wood. The unlit bonfire may seem an oasis for many animals in the winter but when the fires get lit, tragedy occurs.
Many people start building bonfires weeks in advance but if possible, it would be great if you could pile them up the bonfire at the last minute as this way you’ll be able to see if any animals have taken refuge underneath it.
Another thing that you could also consider doing is if a bonfire has erected in the same place for a few days,you could ask for volunteers and move all the wood to a different spot. It wouldn’t take long and could save the life of a sheltering animal.
Love Your Environment! Love Your Wildlife!
Halloween is celebrated on the 31st October and is an ancient Christian Festival to mark the evening before All Hallows Day and today’s the 31st October so Happy Halloween!
Sylvia with a selection of giant pumpkins
But even before the days of Christianity, there was a celebration at this time to signify the changing of the season, and the preparations for the winter months ahead.
The Celts introduced the idea of wearing masks and costumes to ward off evil spirits at this time, and the Romans included the idea of fruit to the festival…which is still seen today with toffee apples and apple bobbing.
What will you be doing this Halloween? Maybe having a party or carving your own lantern?
Let us know as we’d love to hear from you! PS This picture is actually Sylvia on a past trip to Switzerland and we couldn’t resist showing you the fabulous pumpkins!
Did you know that Compost Duvets will enable the worms to work harder as the weather chills in all that extra autumnal organic waste?
They will also make cocoons all winter which will all hatch in early spring. This will make a big difference to the speed of composting when spring arrives and you get a huge burst of hungry young worms in the compost.
How they work: like a conventional Duvet in that any heat below causes the stuffing to swell up and provide a physical barrier preventing the natural heat from escaping. This concept has proved to maintain high temperatures within the compost, both day and night. This heat can be maintained for up to 10 days. It will also keep out frosts in winter so that the worms can work all year round. The Duvet fits snugly into the wooden bins but it can be used on any compost pile.
In towns and cities, in Suburbia and in the country wildlife is looking this way for support this winter both with housing and with a regular dinner. Having a dedicated spot in the garden for food means that the birds and wildlife near to you will economise on energy spent travelling. Putting food out at regular times also conserves energy and ensures survival for your wildlife near neighbours.
Placing food in a secure container suitable for your wildlife makes the best of the food you give. There are always a few bullies around that will chase away your targeted, adopted friend so care in choosing a feeding vessel is well worth the time. There is no time to lose if you want to provide suitable homes which will last into the breeding season. Quality food and housing pays well and lasts for years.
We are really dedicated to our children and to all that are interested in gardening. Naturally the first port of call has to be the Gardening With Children website. Any time of the year is good for starting to garden. Dipping into Gills Blogs is a great place to start if you too are learning ‘on the hoof’ with them. Investing in good tools will reap benefits not only financially but every task is satisfying and generates long term pride.
If you afford the best, you only need to afford it once. With a lifetime guarantee how can you get any better value? So start the children off with a Stainless Steel Long handle Digging Spade and give them a small plot of their own to dig and get into shape. Clean and prepare the soil with something like seaweed meal. Get them to plant a few garlic now with the promise of loads of garlic bread to come with harvesting next year. Lots more ideas and information come with Gill’s Blog this week. There is still time to collect seeds and store them in a cold dry place overwinter.