bertie

Boring week

Hello, Bertie here again.  We had a very boring week.  We didn’t go outside once.  Not once!

It was either too cold, too wet, or Mummy wasn’t here.

Mummy was out yesterday too.  It was cooler than it has been.  She wore her thick grey coat she calls a sweater.  I don’t think it makes her sweat.  It just keeps her warmer.  It was funny in the evening, because it got warmer for a while.  She still wore her stripey sweater, though.

Breakfasts have been good though.  Here are a sample of this week’s breakfasts.  Well, one breakfast demonstrated by each of us.

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Autumn Leaves

I’m getting a little confused by the things Mummy gives me to eat, so I asked Kevin to come and explain them to me.

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Here’s my breakfast yesterday.  I’ve had a little nibble, then gone off to eat my pellets.  The thing at the front with the blue-green leaves I think we had in the winter.  What’s it called, Kevin?

That’s kale, Percy.  Mummy grows it all year round, but mainly for the winter.  She was complaining about slugs eating the  small plants she’d put out, but I guess she has enough growing now to give us a leaf now and then.  It’s yummy isn’t it?

Yes.  Kale.  I like that. There are three leaves at the side, dandelion, which I love, then the smaller very tasty one, and the nice, slightly prickly one that’s upside down (with the silvery side showing).

The small one is the nasturtium, Perce.  It’s very flavourful isn’t it.  When the leaves get large I think they’re a bit hot, personally, but I like them this size.  The upside down one is raspberry.  I don[‘t think we’ll be getting them much longer.

Is that because winter’s coming?

That’s right.  I think that’s why we got that little bunch of carrot shoots that are underneath your raspberry leaf.  Mummy was very frustrated earlier in the year because she kept sowing carrots and they kept not growing.  Now she says that she sowed some more when she cleared the middle bed and put the kale plants and radicchio out, and now they’re absolutely surrounded by baby carrots.  She told me we’ll get little bunches like this until she’s got them tamed and in rows with room to grow.

That sounds good.  They’re very tasty.  The thing with the red stem we’ve been having for ages.  I liked it at first, but sometimes I leave it till later.

Oooh, chard!  I love chard.  I know Midge leaves his stems, as Mummy gives them to me in the morning when she cleans the cages.  She always gives him a chance, just in case he was saving it for a midnight feast.

Oh, does Midge do that too?  So do I.  Mummy gives my leftovers to Oscar.

Well, some things we like and others don’t, and other things others like and we don’t.  I gather you don’t like tomato.

Eugh, no.

Oh, I love tomato.  And blueberries – stop making that face, they’re yummy.

You can have mine.  And strawberries, too

I usually do 🙂  What do you think of the corn husks and tassels?

Those new papery things?

That’s right.  We only get those for a few weeks at this time of year.  They come from a shop in the village, and they get them from the farmer up the road.  They’re much better than shop bought – these ones even have green leaves on the end.

Well, they’re all right, I suppose.  Maybe it’s an acquired taste.

I suggest you acquire it as soon as possible, Perce.  Once they’re gone, it’s a whole year till we get any more, unless Mummy tries growing them again.

Does she grow this funny shaped lettuce?

The oak leaved one, yes.  Here’s another picture of it on Midge’s breakfast pile.  I think we finished up the plant today, as the stalk was in it.

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Oh yes, that’s a better view.  What will she plant instead?

Winter lettuce I expect, or more radicchio.  There isn’t much time left for things to grow to the stage where they’ll get through the winter.  But I think Mummy has some blankets to put over the tents she’s got on the vegetable beds to keep them growing a little longer before winter comes.

That sounds very complicated.

You’ll get the hang of it.  You haven’t mentioned the rudbeckia leaf.

Oh, I like those.  I’m glad she only gives us one each time, but they’re very yummy.  And the marjoram, too.

Did we have anything else today?  I’ve forgotten.

I don’t think so, only pellets and hay.  No carrots.  She says I put too much weight on when I get carrots. 😦

I don’t have a problem with carrots.  Unless I don’t get them, then I lose weight.  I wonder what we’ll get tomorrow?

I’m still eating today’s breakfast.

Really?  I’ve finished mine.  Do you want me to help you out with anything?

You can have my tomato.  Oscar doesn’t need it.

Thanks! (Slurp)

Big Breakfasts

Since I arrived in November, I got used to the things Mummy takes out from the white box for our breakfasts.  There’s usually celery, a few varieties of lettuce, or some cauliflower or broccoli, and there was dark green kale which was rather nice.  And carrots, and peppers and sometimes some other root vegetables. Sometimes Mummy would go outside and find us some fresh kale, which was really yummy.  And sometimes a few other leaves.

The last month we’ve been getting less and less from the white box, and more from the outside.  I have to say, I really like the leaves that come from outside, because they aren’t as cold and they’re much fresher.  Once we started going out in the garden I realised why.  They grow there!  They’re all around our runs, some of them under netting, some up poles and some against the fence.

The past three or four weeks we’ve been getting everything from outside.  And since Mummy said Midge and I needed to diet, we’ve not even been getting carrots, although there have been some carrot-like things on the end of some of the yummiest leaves we had.  I’m not sure what we’ve been eating, so I asked Kevin to explain.  Here he is with two breakfasts from last week.

On the left, the top leaves are runner bean leaves, which I love, but Percy and Oscar say they’ve had enough of.  There’s some lavender lying across, and some of one of the types of mint Mummy has.  There’s a pea shoot, and some oak-leaf lettuce from the garden, and an apple leaf, and I think we had a rudbeckia leaf as well.  That’s a big yellow flower with a brown cone in the centre (not a flat one that’s even bigger, that’s a sunflower).  We also had raspberry leaves that day but I must have eaten them.  The next day (on the right), Mummy rather overdid the pea shoots.  I think she pulled up a whole plant for us.  I ate quite a lot of it, but she eventually took the rest away.  We also have one of the other types of mint, swiss chard with its red stem, strawberry leaves, salsify leaves, lavender again (she knows I can’t get enough lavender if it comes in small portions) and I think she gave us a slice of carrot that day, which wasn’t from the garden.  The next day the carrot tops were from the garden with very tiny carrots, and we had curly endive, too.  Oh, Mummy also gave us a wildflower called nipplewort which grows wherever she wants to grow grass, but it’s very tasty and tastes a little like dandelion.  She gives us that too, when she has some nice leaves handy.  And a special treat is cucumber leaf, but at present she says there are cucumbers growing, so we mustn’t steal too many leaves or the plant will starve.

We also get fennel, parsley, oregano (two  types), and more wildflowers from the garden outside, like red clover and wild basil, and sow thistle (yum), and wild carrot, and vetch.

Is that okay, Percy?

Yes, thank you, Kevin.  With all that variety, I bet you’re not surprised I needed help describing it to you.