Category Archives: My Practical Side

  1. Grass/weed cutting time

    12

    Monday 25 April, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Very soon I’ll be heaving the gas powered grass cutter onto my back for two solid days of tackling the …
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  2. Last of the winter veg

    2

    Sunday 17 April, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Temps are a climbing… up to the early 30s again now (that’s touching 90F), so time to rip up the …
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  3. Broccoli plants

    9

    Saturday 12 March, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    A little while ago we saw these beautiful flowers, and Joanne from My Life Lived Full mentioned wanting to see …
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  4. Cabbages…. my five year wait is over

    16

    Sunday 28 February, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Never had a lot of luck or the right weather conditions for cabbages, but finally, I have some – yay! …
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  5. Something simple from the freezer

    16

    Sunday 21 February, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    With three freezers full of homegrown produce, it’s a pretty regular occurrence that I delve into their depths with not …
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  6. Gotcha – Stopped that leak!

    13

    Sunday 31 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Ok, hands up who’s ever owned a house and had a leaky ceiling at some point or other? Most of …
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  7. Preparing that slow goat stew

    15

    Saturday 23 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    I was asked by Janey In Mersin (an Aussie expat in southern Turkey) about my method of creating that slow-cooked …
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  8. Wordless Wednesday ~ Very very slow cooked goat

    8

    Wednesday 20 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

  9. Lemons, just a few

    14

    Thursday 07 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Following the disaster of last January, when our big freeze wiped out all the lemons, killing one decent sized fruit-producing …
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  10. Wot No Cabbages?

    5

    Wednesday 06 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    The sudden cold snap (aka, winter) dissipated after five-six days, and we are back to mild weather, with a mix …
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  11. Kumquat success

    8

    Tuesday 05 January, 2016 by Uncle Spike

    Whilst many crops have not favoured the weird weather of 2015, the humble little kumquat tree seems to be as …
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  12. Autumn colours, in Winter

    12

    Saturday 26 December, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    It’s officially past mid-winter…. yeah right! Our trees are only just shedding their leaves, as our weird weather continues unabated …
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  13. Making the most of it

    8

    Thursday 03 December, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    When the mountains are as rock strewn as we have here in the southwest of Türkiye, there is little one …
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  14. Last summer produce

    6

    Sunday 25 October, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    It’s been a weird old year…. we’ve seen lemon trees decimated and some killed off by very rare severe frosts …
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  15. Last Peppers

    3

    Sunday 18 October, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Drying the last of the summer peppers before the rains start…

  16. This’ll be tasty!

    5

    Tuesday 06 October, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    The citrus fruit yield looks to be well below average this year. Most of that is down to the weather …
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  17. Remembering our Turkish rural springtime

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    Saturday 03 October, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Everything is green Everything is fresh Everything is lush Everything is growing… . . How different springtime time, compared to …
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  18. Between floors…

    1

    Saturday 26 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    In between the floors of the farmhouse are these huge air bricks. Encased within steel cages and covered in concrete, …
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  19. Logs of the future?

    7

    Saturday 19 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Down in the lower olive grove, we have a rather tall lonesome pine that is growing at a weird, almost …
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  20. Last of the summer crops

    10

    Tuesday 15 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    As summer proper recedes and we move into early autumn, the thermometer drops to below 100F (40C) for the first …
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  21. Recovery over time…

    2

    Saturday 12 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    This bush was one of those pretty much decimated by last winter’s unexpected freeze. Whilst we don’t have ‘real winters’ like many …
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  22. Olives Trees ‘Off Season’

    8

    Thursday 10 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Olive trees tend to produce a crop every two years, more or less. Some trees are a bit weird, producing …
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  23. Drying hot peppers

    8

    Tuesday 08 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Here in Türkiye, we use a table condiment called Pul Biber on a daily basis. Basically it is red pepper …
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  24. Gonna be a peachy old day

    3

    Sunday 06 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Whilst the pear tree and the quince trees are bare this season, can’t quite say the same for the peaches! …
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  25. Jujube or not Jujube

    7

    Saturday 05 September, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Ziziphus jujuba, commonly called jujube, red date, Chinese date, Korean date, or Indian date is a species of Ziziphus in …
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  26. But mom said “No Smut In This House!”

    18

    Wednesday 26 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    When I was a lad, my mom always told me this… but I guess that’s a different story altogether (and …
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  27. Summer weeds

    3

    Tuesday 25 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Summer brings many things…. For us, here in the southwest of Türkiye it means continual hot weather, which is around …
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  28. Summer roses…

    4

    Thursday 20 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Roses in summer are almost unheard of for us! Admittedly the weather is far kinder than normal this year with temperatures, …
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  29. Good year for grapes

    6

    Sunday 16 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    We always get a good crop from these black grapes – they come from a hardy and strong vine. Mostly …
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  30. Splashes of colour

    7

    Thursday 13 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Lilies like these now cover all sorts of areas around the farm. Having started out as one small bucket load, …
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  31. Lemon tree is still alive, just…

    9

    Tuesday 11 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Remember this lemon tree that was almost wiped out during our much colder than normal winter? Well, this is what happened a few …
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  32. Using all the spare land

    7

    Sunday 09 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    There are always places to plant something I’ve found. And this year I’ve utilised a spare area at the back …
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  33. Spot of work to do!

    5

    Thursday 06 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    We forever are collecting wood around here it seems. Whether it’s from the pruning back of the fruit trees every …
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  34. Olive

    2

    Wednesday 05 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

  35. Pink tomatoes – maybe

    14

    Tuesday 04 August, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Raising pink tomatoes, or any non-cherry tomato, has always been a bug-bear for me. I’m really not a fan of pesticides, …
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  36. Throwback Thursday – The first weeks

    8

    Thursday 30 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    When we first took on the farm it was just an overgrown mess, with trees in poor condition and one …
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  37. Greenhouse: Before & After

    9

    Wednesday 29 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Before (2007) . After (2015)

  38. Black bum tomatoes

    13

    Tuesday 28 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Ok so here’s a strange one for ya… black bum tomatoes! This weird phenomenon is actually very common for us on larger fruit tomato plants. …
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  39. Throwback Thursday – Olives indoors!

    9

    Thursday 23 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    This takes me back… to the days before the house was fully habitable. We still lived here, but it was …
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  40. Cherry tomatoes

    9

    Tuesday 21 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Of all the types of tomato that we have attempted to grow, dwarf cherry are the most successful by far. …
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  41. Impressive weeds

    3

    Saturday 18 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    These large yellow bush things are in fact just weeds that appear all over this part of Türkiye. Most of the time …
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  42. Basil

    9

    Wednesday 15 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    One of the better crops this summer, so far, has been the small leaf black basil plants. First planted out …
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  43. Sweetcorn: Progressing well

    13

    Tuesday 14 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Moving on one month after planting, and the corn plants are growing very well indeed. They certainly love the heat …
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  44. Cucumber

    8

    Tuesday 14 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Simple, organic, tasty, free, mine 🙂  

  45. Grape vine escapes

    3

    Sunday 12 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    This grape vine went a little mad this year!

  46. Sweetcorn: Sowing the seeds

    12

    Thursday 09 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Terry said to plant the seeds 6″ apart…. Yes, the advice from my all American farming friends in Colorado, who …
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  47. Sweetcorn: Ground preparation

    9

    Tuesday 07 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Ok, now growing sweetcorn has always been one of my lesser achievements. We had one half decent year some seven …
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  48. Final pomegranate flowers

    6

    Sunday 05 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Early July, and we have the final pomegranate flowers…  Should be a fairly good crop again this autumn – can’t …
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  49. A dash of yellow

    1

    Thursday 02 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

  50. Our extraordinary new hedge!

    16

    Wednesday 01 July, 2015 by Uncle Spike

    Quite a few years ago now, Uncle Baldrick and I bravely moved a rather evil single cactus plant from our …
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