Posted by: kathandroger | September 25, 2011

Acorns and artichokes

As I was picking walnuts the other day I had a strange sensation of rain, despite the fact there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. As I looked around I realised that it was raining….acorns…from our huge oak tree. Already there was quite a carpet developing. I’ve never seen so many acorns in my life! Apparently trees can become very productive when they are at the end of their lives – let’s hope that’s not the case here. Anyway, I’ve been working up in the second barn (which backs onto the oak tree) this week (cleaning beams…oh joy) and heard another strange noise coming from the same general area. Curious, I leaned out of the window to see our sheep and goats chomping away…

Now I’m not too au fait with goat and sheep nutrition – other than they seem to like a bit of grass – so I decided to do a bit of research into the matter. I wish I hadn’t! It would seem that acorns are poisonous to sheep in particular and goats too if they have too many. I had assumed that they would steer clear of anything that wasn’t good for them, but it would seem they can acquire a taste for things that are bad for them (probably like us and alcohol, chocolate, chips etc…). Let’s just hope they have been eating the grass around the acorns rather than the acorns themselves. Hadn’t realised this animal husbandry was quite so stressful!

On a happier note, our Jerusalem Artichokes have finally stopped growing and have flowered. They are about 10 feet tall – goodness only knows how long the artichokes will be under the ground. Here they are looking pretty…

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