La Chatte Gitane (or The Gypsy Cat) was the name we chose for our cottage in France at the time. We chose it while on the road, moving house the first time round, from Ireland to France with 2 dogs and 7 cats in the car.
This blog began its insignificant life as a recipe book for friends and family who would ask me repeatedly for a recipe of this, that and the other.
Since then it has taken many different directions, like we did and like gypsies tend to do. Sometimes making a U-turn and revisiting familiar roads and taking a break when necessary.
You'll find recipes here, but also musings about the places we've called home, the gardens that we've established, not always successfully, the homes we've improved and the environments we've lived in. Currently, after yet another stint in Ireland, we're back in France @ Le Mas d'Ayen

Monday, March 21, 2016

A Pile of Poop

Last week we got a load of cow dung delivered by our friend Sigi from Blueberry Hill Farm

 He arrived with one of their volunteers and we ended up with a nice clean heap.

Yesterday, Bert and I filled up our raised beds some more with a layer of straw and topped with the manure.  

We filled them the same way last year and now that the straw had broken down, so did the level of soil go down.

I proceeded to cover the soil with plastic and other 'stuff' (great slug trap) until I'm ready to plant. It'll keep the weeds out if all goes to plan.

I rescued four strawberry plants and moved them to the raised bed near the kitchen. Homemade cloches from 5 ltr water bottles should protect them somewhat. That's if we don't get any more forceful breezes.

I am glad that we've got that job done ! Now, on with the sowing !

Have a great week.
Patricia xxx...x


  1. It's looking good. We're about to go and pick up a trailer full of horse manure, but it will be Lovely Hubby doing the shoveling. It's been hard to track down a supply since there are not a lot of horses round here and the folk that have them tend to use the manure for their own land as goodness drains down hill with all the rain we get.

    We will put it into the compost bins rather than straight onto the beds so it can rot before we use it and it will end up on the beds next year.

    I'm busy rescuing strawberry plants too at the moment, and I do the same trick with bottles as cloches :-)

    1. This manure should have been well rotted down, but I have my doubts. Hence the covering up part.

      Great minds eh. :)


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