Thursday, 14 October 2010

A few spoons old and new.

Just a short blog to post some photographs of just a few spoons that I have carved. A long way to go before I reach a good standard though.

Hazel,Hornbeam,Sycamore woods.

Woods as above these are some of my first attempts.

One of my favourite woods that I use a lot Blackthorn.


Small Blackthorn spoon


Two recently carved spoons. Spalted Blackthorn (never found this before) & Hornbeam.

Spalted Blackthorn

I found some lovely spalted Blackthorn that was incredibly hard to carve but the wonderful grain made all the hard work worth it.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010


I have had an enforced break from the Blog due to technical problems with the broadband.  This seems to be at last working but for how long?

This blog will be a bit of a hotpotch of photographs and different walks.  However, within a very short space of time we have drifted into Autumn. I am unsure if other people feel the same as me, in that the seasons seem to have moved forward by 3 - 4 weeks?

The Sloes on the Blackthorn bushes seem to have fruited earlier than last year and are far larger. Consequently most of the Sloes are now rotting on the trees, we were picking them this time last year.

Blackthorn fruit (Sloe)

We collected about 6lbs of Sloes a few weeks ago and froze them. On Sunday last we put together our Christmas drinks of 3 litres of Sloe Gin & 2 litres of Sloe Whisky. I gave a recipe out on the blog Berry nice. Empty plastic 5 litre water bottles make wonderful fermentation vessels.  This needs to ferment for 12 weeks.  We plan to filter the Sloe Liquor's into fancy bottles, place a ribbon on and a nice label, lovely presents for the adult children.

Sloe Gin & Whisky
About a fortnight ago my wife, Pants and myself went for a evening / dusk walk to the cliffs. A wonderful time for a walk, no wind, a setting sun and not a ripple on the English Channel. Well worth a few long range pictures.  We sat on a convenient bench and watched the sun disappear how relaxing.

White Cliffs & English Channel

During the times that I have been unable to Blog I have still been snapping away.  I blogged about Fungi last time well I found the most enormous Fly Agaric the other day could not resist a picture.

Fly Agaric

I was out and about today and got absolutely soaked. The day had started misty and dank but looked like it might improve, wrong.  But i did manage to take some lovely pictures of some more fungi.  The elder tree has the most unusual looking fungi the "Jews Ear"  why its called that I have no idea! it is almost translucent, rubbery and moist to the touch beautiful my pictures do not do the fungi justice.

Jews Ear
The silver Birch is home to the "Polypore" a Bracket Fungi, again an unusual shape made me want to photograph it. The Polypore is not edible but can be used for a woodland plaster by taking the outer skin off. it can also be used to strop a razor/knife.  A truly edible Bracket fungi is the Beef Steak Fungus this was my second lucky find I posted previously about Beef Steak Fungus.  This was huge it went the same way as the last sliced and fried lovely. They do not taste like steak though! Whilst out today I did find plenty of young tender edible (only when young) "Common Puffballs".

Birch Polypore
Top of the Beef Steak Fungus
Underside of Beef Steak fungus

During slicing for the frying pan
Common Puff Ball

Not all things are dying away because of the Autumn! the Rose hips are fantastically large this year.  The Haw's on the Hawthorn tree are doing well,  and you can make a herbal tea with them.  I found a Yew tree with red fruit on which I thought unusual for this time of the year.

I ventured along the river Stour at lunchtime and for just a brief moment the clouds parted the sun came out.  I managed to take a lovely photograph of the river and surroundings. The cloud came back over within a few minutes and the heavens opened.

Whilst wandering around I came across a beautiful sight of a wooden arch made by the Blackthorn bushes not a good photograph I was a bit damp at this stage but a lovely sight.

Blackthorn Arch
My final find was a patch of horse radish plant I decided to take a little after seeking and gaining permission to make a home made sauce for my beef this evening.  I then used a recipe that I found on line to make creamy horseradish sauce

Horse radish
Creamed horse radish
Well that's about me caught up. However, they say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.