Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Vanishing bees

The bees are disappearing. Our local beekeeper tells us that it has been a disastrous summer for the bees and is not sure what is likely to turn it around. If we have no bees, are other insects next?
What value can be placed on keeping plants in our own eco environment that will support insects and its biodiversity?
Some plants that support bees are as follows :
Annual coreopsis
Annual scabious
Bee sage
Common poppy
Corn chamomile
Corn marigold
Devil's bit scabious
Field Woundwort
French marigold
Greater knapweed
Lesser snapdragon
Meadow clary
Mexican hat
Round-leaved fluellin
Sea holly
Spiked speedwell
Sweet William
Tobacco plant
Viper's bugloss
Whorled clary
Wild clary
An opportunity to see the vanishing bees documentary in a town near you.

Monday, September 28, 2009


The autumn weather is simply wonderful and we seem to have long forgotten that the summer was a cold affair this year. I seem to have been busy with life, health, shop, school holidays and took a bit of a blogging hiatus. The longer I live in this village and the shop, the more I feel a sense of belonging to the place that surrounds us.The vine seemed to grow no matter how many times I tamed it and despite that the grapes are small and sweet.
A solo pumpkin has been creeping along the way in search of sunshine and many small fruits were eaten by slugs. The sunflowers that should tower behind the pumpkin patch never got going this summer and any tomatoes received a dose of blight.
Marigolds that should have flowered months ago are enjoying the limelight. The world seems to reinvent itself on a regular basis in our environment.
There is a general feeling that after years of downshifting we have found our zone, a place where we can breathe, where we can develop in tune with the life rhythms around us. The house is beginning to blossom too and more work is needed to support its structure and yet it amazes me how the spirit of the house that seemed to rebel at the beginning is also showing signs of mellowing and enjoying the care we give it. Living in a historic house is like being a caretaker of its historical content and demands respect and understanding.

Despite the credit crunch we move forward with our business idea, supporting local producers such as the Exmoor Smokery which provides fresh smoked fish, cards by local artists, as well as being a window for local talent. The next window display will be a ' nice' Halloween scene. Life is full and every day I am reminded of Mother Theresa's quote as we rise at 6 am to walk out into a very peaceful and quiet village square, before the village wakes up to the smell of our baked goods.

Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.