Crafted from nature

Category: Flora (Page 3 of 10)

The Blooming Blog of May

May has brought the long awaited awakening of the wildflowers. Every day we walk we find a new “first of the year” The ground is again a carpet of beauty and every step you take is a new discovery. So here are a few photos of our May blooms.

Gorse is so vibrant in flower, this photo is looking back across the Kyle at our croft and house

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Gorse

Butterwort

Butterwort

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Butterwort leaves

 

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Currant

This is the first Scottish primrose we have ever seen, and it is on our croft.

wildflowers

Scottish Primrose

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Spotted Heath Orchid

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Northern Marsh Orchid

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Spring Squill

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Bog Myrtle

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Lousewort

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Forget-me-not

Birdsfoot Trefoil

Birdsfoot Trefoil

Some more amazing red skies

Sunset 20/5/16

Sunset 20/5/16

Couldn’t resist him, putting this one up of him posing

Bruiser

Bruiser

Fences ready to go in with Saphire overseeing the Job

Fences ready to go in with Saphire overseeing the job

Tommy's favourite post in Melness. What a great first day! We understand this one was a challenge.

Tommy’s favourite post in Melness. What a great first day! We understand this one was a challenge.

Tommys finishing touches

Tommys finishing touches

The first tree. Yay!

The first tree. Yay!

Now the fences are completed Thank you so much Tommy. You are a star.

We have started on our Croft Plan. 250 trees bushes and fruit are now in the ground just in the nick of time.croft

Made a new postcard holder from a piece of spalted beech and some wire and hooks made by a friend. Thank you Deef.x  They are excellent.

Postcard Holder

Postcard Holder

Made some new Rowan Keyrings

Keyrings

Keyrings

 

We have almost no free days now until September, We are hoping to be able to keep up with the guest room Buttons and croft through the next 3 months. We will learn from experience! We are hoping to add Jams and fragrances to our little industry for next year! Lets just hope we haven’t bitten off more than we can chew. We did move up here for the quieter slower pace of life after all.

Savouring the last of winter

Savouring the last of winter

The front garden

The front garden 6th March

These last few weeks have mainly been about the snow. We love the Highland snowscapes and tend to spend as much time in the snow as we can afford

Enjoying the snow on the path to Varrich castle (Bharraich Caisteal)

Enjoying the snow on the path to Varrich castle (Bharraich Caisteal)

Steve and Myself both had Birthday trips, Steve’s (Cap’n Matt Black) we spent at The Cottage residential recording studio on the shores of Loch Fyne, with bestest bud and joint founder of The Black Wreck Music Project Defoe (Robinson Wreck). Recording some of the pirate songs they wrote together (in the Dorset Barrel) in a pro studio, we came away very happy with the results, we just need to mix and master them now. Any help with installing logic x onto our laptop would be appreciated! email us if you can help. thewoodlifeway@me.com

Whilst my Birthday we spent walking all day in the  sunny snow.

Loch Meadie

Loch Meadie

It was my absolute perfect day. Walking in the snowy mountain landscape along the side of Loch Meadie, With the Majestic Ben Loyal  Ben Hope and Ben Klibreck surrounding. We took our homemade bread and flapjacks for lunch, with our little Espresso pot of course, as we never travel without it.

Snowy walk

Snowy walk

 

Youngest daughter, her Partner and best friend and her partner drove the 700+ miles to visit us for the week in between our Birthdays which was brilliant. They had a great journey with a fantastic overnight stop in the Lake District on-route. They travelled through the snowy Cairngorms and arrived just after dark to vegetable curry and blazing wood fires. The highlight of their visit was our walk up Ben Hutig, mostly in the sunshine with the odd hail and snow periods thrown in to add drama.

Planking on-route to Ben Hutig

Planking on-route to Ben Hutig

Hat and Amy

Hat and Amy

Nearly there

Nearly there

Hutig snowcloud

Hutig snowcloud

We went from glorious views out over the Atlantic Ocean, of the Orkney Islands- to not being able to see the footprints we had just trodden. Glorious day indeed.

After the cloud

After the cloud

We also had a voucher to use from Airbnb which was about to expire and we used it to spend 2 nights in the Cairngorm national park. We stayed at Kingussie and walked up to the mountain railway and Ski lifts to watch the Ski-ers on another amazing day of sun and snow

Ski-ers on Cairngorm

 

only to awaken to a snowed in car and thoughts of another unplanned night on the road,

Overnight snow

Overnight snow

but as it happened the thickest snow had passed before leaving the Aviemore area so all was well.

 

On the home front we have been just as busy with

: Guest room – calendar already filling up with little space left for June or July and we even have bookings going into October!,

: Croft – awaiting the decision for a crofting grant to help with the fencing costs of the new planting area

: Buttons – getting some new lighter weight space saving display Trees made ready for this years new outlets, organising and cutting the new stock from this seasons prunings. (we still have a spruce branch to cut and collect from a neighbour, and already have orders for the Coasters which it will make).

: Renovation – preparing the Stone byres for their much anticipated new roofs. Trying to find dry storage for their contents whilst they are being done, and places for the new roofing material to live pre-use. As well as dismantling of the old tin roofs, trying to keep the stone walls in tact whilst completely removing all of the old timbers.

At the same time we are finding our time has to be managed to fit in the cutting and chopping of the firewood to try to keep the house warm to guest standard. Linen washing and drying in the winter.

Trying to get our new page up and running for our Wilderness music project.

Working on the packaging and marketing of the new Croft grown produce we are are adding this year.

The Snowdrops are adding their very welcome bloom, the the crocuses popping through, and currents coming into flower too. The frogs and Toads are making their presence known, The Lapwings have returned and the Skylarks have started to sing.

The birds are all busying themselves with nest material. The Marsh Marigold leaves are starting to appear too. The Gorse is starting to Bloom. We are awaiting the arrival of the first Melness Lambs, hoping they will be spared the snow and freezing temperatures this year. Last pictures for this entry are the amazing Mothering Sunday aurora. What a night!

Mothering Sunday aurora

Mothering Sunday aurora

 Mothering Sunday aurora 2

Mothering Sunday aurora 2

There was no way our little camera could shoot the whole sky which was filled with the beautiful show.

 

Autumn already

Autumn colours and reflections from this weeks walks.

Beautiful evenings

Beautiful evenings

Autumn colours

Autumn colours

The evenings’ are drawing in, this of course has it’s pros and cons.

Pros being : beautiful sunsets, log fires, and dark skies with more chance to view the dancing skies of the “Northern Lights” or “Aurora Borealis”, we have also had some beautifully clear, dark, starry skies.

Living in such a remote area means we have no light pollution, which gives us a fantastic night sky. Some of our recent guests knew many of the constellations, we enjoyed a short lesson on some of the basics which in turn has triggered a knowledge quest of the night sky – thank you M & M for the inspiration.

Cons being : shorter daylight working hours and the start of winter (although these could also be viewed as a pros…!)

September gave us our best and most consistent weather of the year – an Indian summer – and a chance to get outside to start creating more buttons and coasters as well as getting some firewood cut in anticipation of the Highland winter.

We are still working on the Sea Buckthorn coasters, which are looking fantastic and seem to be completely stable. There is a possibility of us making some wooden Christmas garlands. Thank you for the idea Chip! had a very kind donation of some Holly thank you Barbara. Maybe some Holly key rings for christmas?

We are hoping to have a stall at The Melness event on 14th of November and the Tongue event on 21st of November. We will post more information as we get it! I am not sure of the details yet!

Sea Buckthorn Coaster

Sea Buckthorn Coaster

Sea Buckthorn Coaster

Sea Buckthorn Coaster

So far October has not been too shabby either! We had some guests last week who took an evening stroll to the beach for a fire and a glass of champagne, this is not normal October activity, some other guests were looking at camping last week on the beach at Sandwood Bay. October usually brings the first proper frost or storms of the winter, and whilst we have had one wet and windy evening we are enjoying the mild autumn.

 

The mushrooms and geese increase and the golden browns of Autumn are sweeping in. We have been surprising a larger amount of grouse than normal too, they do tend to wait until you almost step on them until they suddenly launch themselves into the air in a disgruntled commotion.

There have been many many seals these last few weeks too which is great, and bruiser has finally noticed them after we told him they are Sea Sheep!

Sea Sheep

Sea Sheep

dog seals

 

Stunning red skies too both ends of the days.

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We are surprised that we are still getting guest room bookings for October, November and even for December. We have finally built the shelving in the guest bedrooms and sorted out the Scottish fine soaps toiletries. We are very happy with the new dispensers which are really well made and work perfectly too.

Scottish Fine Soaps

Scottish Fine Soaps

We spent a couple of days away at The Boat Hotel in the Boat of Garten in The Cairngorm Mountains. It was fantastic. We walked and walked and walked. It was still lovely to get home though.We saw the Steam train in Abernethy Forest which is a remnant of the Caledonian Forest in Strathspey.

Steam train

Steam train

We also visited Loch Garten which is always one of our favourites.

Loch Garten

Loch Garten

We are hoping to get our first fruit trees in for November planting on the croft too. Pre-ceeded by a little fencing around the planting area.

The Tongue Post office Apple tree is making a huge effort to survive too.

Apple tree

Apple tree

 

 

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