Collecting stuff

We collected acorns in October.

acorns

First these…

acorns

…and then these – about 300 acorns in total. Some of the acorns were already sprouting, lovely. 🙂 We collected them from the ground, under big oak trees, here in our home village.

The first two pictures I took in October, the rest of the pictures in this blog post I took today.

acorns planted

So, we planted the acorns in our garden, here…

acorns planted

…and here.

And we also collected some acorns for the land that my boyfriend now has in the region of Etelä-PohjanmaaSouth Ostrobothnia, about 180 kilometres north from our home, that is to say, we already planted the acorns there, into the forest ground. There’s a certain spot or place, an island actually, where broad-leaved trees are growing in the forest, but there are no oak trees, not yet…

So, this is all an experiment, with these acorns, just nice and interesting.

spruce cones

I collected spruce cones, too. These were on the ground in our yard, on the driveway. We don’t have big spruce trees, but there are spruces just outside our yard. I started to collect these just because I think that they are lovely, but my boyfriend said that we could try to get seeds from these as well. Well, that’s a good idea, an interesting experiment, too. The cones have been drying inside the house now.

emptying a compost bin

And I was shoveling compost, emptying a compost bin a bit today. We have this year-round composter for kitchen (and garden) waste.

emptying a compost bin

We shovel the compost into this container, where the process continues, and in the end, it all goes back to nature again. 🙂

-Leena

Autumn colours, by the lake, parsnips…

The first six pictures I took in our garden yesterday.

red oak

Our red oak is red, strikingly red, this autumn. 🙂

red oak

red oak

red oak

October

Birch tree & maple tree, again… I got a bit carried away with these two, they are both fabulously yellow, golden, this autumn.

October

Two pictures that I took by the lake today:

by the lake Pyhäjärvi

By the lake Pyhäjärvi here in our home village.

by the lake Pyhäjärvi

And I already wrote earlier that we are growing parsnips, too, for the first time ever, this year. I’ve made roasted parsnips twice, this was last night:

roasted parsnips

I used only salt and pepper and olive oil. And I don’t peel the parsnips.

Parsnip has a lovely nutty and aromatic flavour, it’s one of my favourite vegetables, best from the oven. 🙂

-Leena

Autumn leaves, new grounds, beetroot…

The autumn colours are particularly abundant and vibrant this year. We have our own word for the autumn leaf colour here in Finlandautumn leaf colour is called ruska in Finnish.

It’s exceptionally warm for October in many parts of Finland this weekend – over 15 degrees Celsius.

First just a few pictures that I took in our garden today:

October

October

October rose

We still have rose blooming in the garden, in front of the porch. We planted the plant in the summer this year.

October rose

October rose…

Okay, and what else am I doing…? 🙂 Hmm, for example, working by my computer for a bit again. And we, my boyfriend and I, we’ve been familiarizing ourselves with new grounds and exploring a new land – thanks to my boyfriend who had the chance to buy some land – forest and field, in the region of Etelä-PohjanmaaSouth Ostrobothnia, about 180 kilometres north from our home. So, that’s my boyfriend’s project, but there’s plenty of space also for me to learn new things and to help out, and in fact, we both already attended our first day-long course on how to take care of forest.

I already wrote earlier that we are growing beetroot for the first time ever, this year. Here’s now our pickled beetroot that we made yesterday:

pickled beetroot

I used water, vinegar, sugar, whole white peppercorns, cloves, a cinnamon stick and salt when I was cooking the pickling liquid. And I put also cloves of garlic into the jar. Should be nice. 🙂

-Leena

About some of the edibles in the garden II

Garlic! 🙂 This is the first time that garlic has grown in our garden. – We’ve tried to grow garlic once before, but nothing really happened then…

garlic

Now, all of a sudden, we have both smaller and bigger garlics. They are marvellous! I love the smell and taste of garlic and I eat small amounts of raw garlic, too.

dried onions

We used some of our onions fresh from the garden, but the rest of the onions we dried, because they were pretty small. There are both yellow onions and red onions. Dried onions are delicious as well.

fruit and vegetable dryer

Here’s our fruit and vegetable dryer. A nice machine. The scent of onion, for example, was wonderful when the onions were drying in there.

growing zucchini

This year we tried to grow zucchini for the first time ever. Well, actually, we weren’t trying that hard, we didn’t pay that much attention to this try. Here in the pic is our biggest oddball, our smaller zucchinis didn’t have the time to grow bigger before the weather got a bit colder.

broad bean

And another try… My broad beans… In a raised garden bed with wooden frames these were.

broad bean

broad bean

I didn’t get that many broad beans, but some broad beans anyway, and I want to try growing them again next year! 🙂

sweet corn

About the sweet corn… We’ve got more sweet corn now than a year ago. 🙂

sweet corn

And we are drying some sweet corn, too, for seeds, hopefully.

I’ll write about a couple of edibles in the garden a bit later again.

-Leena

About some of the edibles in the garden

Today I’ll write a bit about some of the edibles in the garden right now. Here’s really only some of the edibles in the garden – about a few more a bit later…

sweet corn

This is the second time that we are growing sweet corn in our garden. Last summer our sweet corns grew from seedlings, these are grown from seed now. This summer has been very good for growing sweet corn here in Finland, it has been very warm and sunny.

sweet corn

The tallest plant is much taller than I am.

sweet corn

There are cobs growing in three plants or stalks, two cobs in each plant. We had several sweet corn stalks growing, but only three grew taller and are now growing cobs. Hmm, I’m still not sure how to talk about the different parts of the corn plants, how to call them, and not even in Finnish… :p But yeah, I’ll write about the harvest of our sweet corn then later. 🙂

potato

Our potato patch this summer – new patch for potatoes this year again… We haven’t dug up any potatoes yet.

carrot

This is how our carrots grow this year; a raised garden bed with a wooden frame. Neat, no weeds.

beetroot, parsnip, turnip

Beetroot, parsnip and turnip. A raised bed with the frame as well. And we are growing all these three for the first time ever. We haven’t dug up beetroot and parsnips yet.

carrot & turnip

But we have dug up some carrots and turnips already. I used these in soup.

tomato

And we have only one tomato plant growing this year, we had more than one, but only this bears fruit. But yeah, the plant doesn’t look very good anymore. The nights can already be a bit colder, and a bit cold for tomato plants, but we still have warm days. The temperatures have been around 20 degrees Celsius in the daytime.

tomato

But there’s fruit turning red all the time now.

tomato

tomato

Our first ripe tomatoes this year. I will never stop wondering at the taste of home-grown tomatoes – they taste so sweet and amazing. 🙂

-Leena

Summer in full swing already

It’s been summer here in Finland all the time now… The temperatures have been between 20 and 25 degrees Celsius during the day, and some days it’s been even warmer than that, too… And when we’ve had like “a bit cooler weather”, the temperatures have been between 18 and 20 degrees. So, it’s been quite incredible to experience this here now… But one morning was cold this week – it was 4 degrees Celsius, whoa! But it’s been all sunshine, sunshine, and very dry everywhere…

And about myself… and my blog now. I’ve been working outside the home, so to speak, now, it has something to do with gardening (would you believe it? 😉 ) aaand not working at home with my computer means that I don’t sit by my computer that often now, because I wake up very early in the morning, and I drive to work very early in the morning – I’m some sort of an early owl altogether now, and I don’t have that much time or energy for this dear blog of mine. Well, I don’t mean that I was super blogger before, but I mean, for example, that some of the content of my blog will now be only on my Instagram (owlnatureleena), like most of the flower pictures, and so on. Well, let’s see how everything happens, just thought I’d mention that even if it looks like I’m doing nothing here in my blog, I’m actually doing many things out here and there and preparing myself for many things all the time. 😀 And yes, I still have some planting to do here at home, seeds, seedlings… Oh dear, oh dear…

I took all the pictures in this blog post in our garden today.

Oookay, to begin with, our cherry tree didn’t survive the winter, it didn’t grow any leaves – it just stood there, all bare and dry…

cherry tree

So, this is our new cherry tree now. The dead cherry tree was by the woods, this is by the terrace of our house.

cherry bush

We actually thought that our cherry bush wouldn’t survive the winter, but here it still is. And it is flowering!

cherry bush flowering

It still has many flower buds, too.

pear tree

The pear tree is flowering as well. The flowers are… down there, all on the same spot… There’s been like five or six of them.

About some animals… Cuckoo bird has been calling here every day now – the delightful voice of the early summer! And my boyfriend has seen bats in our garden again. I haven’t seen them – I’ve already been sleeping…

plum tree

The plum tree already flowered, it had perhaps around 100 flowers. And the apple tree already flowered, too.

lilac

Lilacs, common lilacs are blooming now. Oh, the lovely scent…

“Oh, summer, the light, the dazzle, oh, that shi…itake…!”:

A night owl?

-A bit of a night owl…? 🙂

-Leena

More crocus flowers, onions growing, year-round composter…

Spring days… But it’s been a bit cooler now, but not cooler than normally in Finland this time of the year; the temperatures have been around 10 degrees Celsius in the daytime. – Some days it’s been more like 5 degrees, but some days it’s been 13 degrees. And in the nighttime the temperatures have been a bit above 0 degrees Celsius. It’s been a bit more cloudy now, but in the daytime there still has been more sunshine than rain altogether.

I took all the pictures in this blog post in our garden today.

More crocus flowers. Now we already have crocuses growing in many places in the garden. We don’t even remember all the places we planted crocus bulbs last autumn, and I don’t even know all the places my boyfriend planted them. 🙂

crocus

That white stuff on the ground, by the way, is spring fertilizer for the cherry tree…

crocus

Charming surprises.

And more butterflies… I saw the first butterfly in our garden on Sunday the 15th, it was a brimstone butterfly, and I’ve seen brimstone butterflies here a few times more after that, too. A few bees have been buzzing as well, and we saw a tiny hedgehog in the woods next to our garden, too.

We’ve been working in the garden for some time now, turning the garden into our outdoor living room again, clearing it up and so on. And raking, raking again – how come we have so, so many fallen leaves on the ground now in April even though we raked, like everything, last autumn…?

growing onions

Onions, red onions are already growing, from onion sets, in these pots in our garden. Planted about two weeks ago.

composter with a crown

A composter with a crown on the top. 🙂 We have been using this composter for fruit and vegetable peels, coffee grounds, used tea bags, and so on… for over a week now. This is our first composter for kitchen waste, Biolan pikakompostori – quick composter 220eco, a year-round composter. So simple, useful and nice. And the crown is a container that we use for collecting the fruit peels, coffee grounds, et cetera, in the kitchen.

-Leena