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The Land

Les Verrines from Above

Les Verrines from Above

Les Verrines from Above

120 degrees of Les Verrines. (The view from my office.) Click through for QTVR media

Les Coqs

Best Friends.

Best Friends.

The wonderfully cuddly poussains that had hatched in spring were now all grown up. The chicken house which was built with only three chickens in mind was over crowded (we now had 17!). Anyone entering the backyard was greeting by a mass of chickens running up pecking for grains… The situation was out of control and had to be dealt with. We were hungry… It seemed there was only one thing left to do… (more…)

August Garden

Day's Harvest
August was a month of harvesting. The months of work digging and preparing the land, planting and maintaining the gardens throughout the summer, and watering through the dry months were starting to pay off. The caves were filled with kilos of potatoes, onions, shallots, beets, and carrots for the winter. (more…)

July Gardening in Les Verrines

In July, all the hard work in the garden in May and June finally started to pay off. Plenty of rain and sunshine got the garden growing fast and green… and we were finally able to enjoy our first harvests! We have more food than we know what to do with- and so much more to come! It’s a really great feeling looking around you, knowing that you have raised enough food to live on and even better- that it was all grown without ANY chemicals, and all right in our own back yard! SO MANY VEGETABLES! (more…)

Gardening in May and June

Back in the end of May I had just arrived in Les Verrines- a bit later than planned- but just in time to get going on the Garden. The rest of May and almost all of June was spent with fork in hand, breaking the hard dirt, pulling out the grass and stones, and turning the soil over again and again until it was ready for seeds… Now almost two months later, the hard work is starting to show, the sore muscles are forgotten, and the bare wet land starts to look a little greener. (more…)

Cerises Chez Jaques

Basket of Cherries

June is Cherry month in La Creuse… for a few precious weeks the trees throughout the countryside are filled with beautiful pink blossoms. Then, almost all at once the cherries are ripe- and then are gone. For a few days in early June we eat all the cherries we can stand- one’s yearly cherry ration in the matter of a few hours! Whatever is not eaten, packed into delicious Clafoutis, or sterilized into jars, will either rot or be taken by the birds if it’s not gathered fast enough… So Jaques called one day asking if I could come by that very afternoon for Cherry Picking- it was either now or never since the birds were already getting full! If we waited even a day longer they would be gone… So, I cancelled my plans for that afternoon and we headed to Eguzon gather all the cherries we could. (more…)

Le Poil et la Plume

Inspiration of the Day:

A friend, inspired by my new feathered companions, recently loaned me a book written by Annie Dupery- a Parisian actress relocated to la Creuse… In Le Poil et la Plume she describes eloquently her reasons for relocating to this ‘forgotten’ part of the country, and her endeavors raising both chickens and cats (Fur and Feathers) in her rural garden… The opening text of her book puts it perfectly, (in words better than I can conjure) so I have left them in the original French (rough English translation follows). (more…)

Spring in Les Verrines…

It’s definitely spring! In La Creuse, that usually means a lot of gray, rainy days… But there’s a good bit of sunshine mixed in and when the sun shines, even for a brief moment, it’s amazing. The color of green everywhere is intense, some kind of shade of green which can’t really be described or captured in pixels… You will just have to come see for yourself.

State of Affairs

Admittedly, the house was in pretty wicked shape when we got back- It’s been over a year since anyone has been inside, or cut the grass! This was what we were greeted by when we drove up… Not exactly the prettiest sight, but it’s more or less what I had expected. Looks like we’ll be spending the next few weeks chopping, and cutting, and burning- before we’ll even be able to begin the real work! (more…)

Spring in La Creuse