What a summer it has been so far: we are not at the end of July yet, but I think we’ll be close to it being the driest July ever.

Record Breaking Temperature
August 2022

According to my weather station, we only received 13 mm so far in July and the average rainfall should be more like 130 mm, which is 10 times as much.

I just checked the weather forecast and it seems we’ll finally be seeing some rain in the next few days.

I also recorded a very low temperature of just 4.6 °C on the night of the 16th July and of course a record-breaking 29.5 °C (in the shade) on 19th July!

The soil which is not covered by plants is just parched! But this also shows how important it is to try and have as little bare soil as possible as vegetation will keep the soil moist for much longer. I’ve got kale growing alongside chickweed and the plants look pretty good despite the drought.

Remember how we were hoping to hatch fertilised eggs the natural way? Normally you don’t want a broody hen as they stop laying and can get undernourished as they don’t eat very well. Of course, now that we DO want a hen to go broody, they decide to keep enjoying running around the fields! There is nothing we can do to try and get one broody, apart from leaving rubber, fake eggs in the nest boxes, which we have done.

Never mind, due to Gregor being off for 2 weeks, building the new chicken ‘cathedral’ is no longer a priority and for now it is only a shell, well more like a couple of posts with a front and back and nothing between!

The girls are not impressed...

Did you know you can grow hops in Scotland?

Well, the answer is yes, you can!

We brought a hop plant back with us from the Netherlands some years back and it really is taken over our veranda. It is unbelievable that this plant dies back in autumn and that all this growth you see on the picture has started growing from the end April! Last year we got hops, but sadly they all got infested with aphids and became all sticky and I didn’t like the idea of sticky aphid poo in my beer, so we didn’t use them! Hopefully this year we won’t have an aphid infestation and we’ll be able to make beer with our own, home grown Scottish hops!.

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