Honey, Lucerne, Hippo Junction, rescued fish, and late snow

This is a sort of general round up blog.  We got our first batch of honey last autumn,  We’ve now moved the bees to Top Strip where the sheep can’t annoy them, and are doubling up to ten hives this summer.  We hope to have some to sell to our guests after Christmas.   Secondly, against all sensible advice, we have sown some Lucerne (Alfalfa if you don’t like its real name) which doesn’t like acid soil and hates wet feet in the winter.  But it’s a good soil improver and nitrogen fixer so with plenty of lime and a bit of luck we’ve got it away and its doing well so far.  We’ve companion sowed it with Timothy, and we’re hoping to make small bale horse hay with it. 

The third item is a bit random, having found a tree root that looks like a Hippo, at least I think it does.  It has given its name to ‘Hippo Junction’ where Top Strip, Lambing Field, Syndercombe Lane, and Schooling Field meet.  Trouble is that it only looks like a Hippo when the sun is at a certain angle, and most of the time it just looks like a root so it’s a bit like looking for the keyhole in the side of whatever that mountain was called in The Hobbit.  You can probably only see it one day every hundred years. 

Fourthly, Ben’s wife works for the RSPCA and has trouble homing rescued fish.  So with six ponds and no fish we were aware of it made perfect sense to give them a new home at Stolford.  They were all a bit crammed in in their last home so they still swim about in a sort of multi-cultural shoal.  There’s Ghost Koi, Goldfish, and a Sturgeon.  And finally, some late snow at Stolford which wasn’t quite thick enough to attach the new snow plough so my wife still has gloating rights as it is still technically a useless purchase.