Mother Earth has been showing us the spectrum of her dynamics-- It has been a nutty few weeks for El Noor Gardens. We've had wild winds non-stop, days of 19 degrees celsius, and then days of 45 degrees...its like a wild boat ride and El Noor, is just holding onto the bow of the ship, trying to glide through the wrath as gracefully as she can...
The green rolling hills have now turned golden, and there is much seed in the air. And despite the fluctuations with the weather, the 2nd rose bed with the new roses, is doing pretty good. Some of the smaller bare root roses perished in the crazy heat, but as you can see, most are doing well.
Naturally, being that my roses are so young, I was not expecting a 2nd flush of rose buds, but here is a 2nd flush in the cool spell we've had last week, and although they are not as big as the first flush, they are still making the garden beautiful.
Even hot Cocoa is doing well. Such a pretty rose that changes her shades of colour through her cycle.
Christmas is rolling around the corner, and for me, although I don't particularly celebrate Christmas, I do love the family get together's it brings. My family tends to go overboard (My mama's fridge almost falls through the floor) but it only happens once a year, and I enjoy catching up with everyone, particularly my girl Melissa. Some of you may know my old friend Melissa, she's appeared on a couple of my old Youtube Vids, and we've had many laughs over the years with each other.
She came to stay for the weekend, and we were up till all hours dying our hair with Henna & Indigo. Such a messy procedure as some of you know, but worth the final result. Natural, healthy beautiful hair. It always help to have extra hands with the application!!
We always have a good old belly laugh when we're together, always entertaining each other with late night going on's.... No doubt we kept the poor chooks awake.
Speaking of chooks, my bossy girl Erethae has been sick on and off over the past couple of weeks. For over a year, she's had Bumblefoot, and silly as it sounds, originally I never thought it was Bumblefoot as I couldn't find a core. But one day last week, I stretched her toes out as far as I could until I could see inside the crevasse of her 'foot pad' and sure enough, there was a core. I was gutted for poor little 'Thae.
Bumblefoot is a condition quite common in chooks that starts with a staph infection with either from mites, or something getting lodged into the foot. I saw flakes of grass seed around the core and Im wondering if a grass seed pierced her skin all those months ago. If its not treated, it can make your chickens very sick, spreading up through the body and eventually will kill them.
I wish I was more thorough with checking her before, but she is a high stress chook, and I knew trying to carefully remove this abscess core was going to be traumatic not just for her, but for me also. I love my chooks like family but if I didn't do something, the staph infection which causes the abscess could move through her body and kill her.
So I called my mother and being a nurse for over 30 years, she was going to be the chook doctor. I had previously called vets around the district, and no one wanted to touch her.
Partly because they didn't think it was worth it because 'she's a chook', and also because they were not sure of how much local anaesthesia they could administer safely. I knew then, Id have a better chance at doing it myself.
It upsets me that people believe there to be a hierarchy of importance of animals in the animal kingdom. I believe every animal & insect is equally important, just simply different expressions of Creation. Why can't others see that?? So I knew whatever the case, it was up to me. And besides, taking Erethae to the vet, would also be upsetting for her. I bought all the medical supplies I needed and my mama came out and we went to work.
Surprisingly, once we numbed Erethae's foot for 10 mins and began to scrape the top of the core with the scalpel, my mother pushed the abscess from the bottom with some pressure, and the core (all 1cm's of it) squeeze out with no blood to speak of! Of course Erethae felt some pain with the pressure of pushing on the core, but I was so relieved we didn't have to cut it out in the end.
We bandaged her up, and I suspect the infection has moved up her foot, because her little back knuckle has been swollen, and Im hoping over the next month or so, it will come down, after the core removal.
After weeks of eating very little, and being flat, and isolating herself from the others, the next morning she was her perky self with a voracious appetite. It must be such relief to have the abscess gone. I hope she is okay but it will be touch and go for the next few weeks.
The bandage is off now, and things seem to be looking good. There is still a slight bump on her but my mother seems to think it could be scar tissue build up, due to the abscess being lodged in her foot for so long. The core came out in one clean piece and was as hard as a rock, so she doubts that any core is still remaining in her foot. It's hard to say right now.
My chooks are very happy & 95% of the time healthy chooks, but we've had our fair share of sickness and regular chook-related ailments at El Noor. And I have had to learn everything along the way.
Earlier in the year, I thought Deema would die because she was very sick, and whether this was due to a poisoning (of maybe eating fertiliser pellets) or molting, or both, or something else completely, she has since made a full recovery. Look at her before and after below:
It took Deema months of recovery but now she's nice and silky again. She ones of my original chooks and is the matriarch hen in my clan, so she holds a special spot in my heart.
I don't know if it's because of Christmas, but my soaps have been selling like hotcakes recently.
I have made a new blend called "El Noor", which is obviously named after my farm because it is created purely with the hydrosol I made a month or so ago, from my rose petals and rosemary. Its a super fat soap, with a sprinkling of rosemary on top, and is still in the process of saponifying. High fat or super fat soaps take longer to go through their processes than other soaps....but the smell and texture is worth the wait... I believe it is going to be a super creamy, mildly floral smelling soap.
It will be put on my website for sale once the process is complete.
Some of you also know that Ive been busy in the workshop also, getting transported back into those ancient worlds....
I have some other pieces I am busily in the works with and I will come to you with some more of those later next year....
The desert has also called me back, to get some of that ancient grounding that I love so much, and visit old friends. But the place is a little mad right now, because Hollywood Hearthrob Zac Efron is staying in my old hometown. He's a little after my time, so I never knew much about him, and I don't know what's happened, but its made everyone a little bit nuts.
The film crew is over 60, so the town is buzzing.
But besides the film crew, there have been some stragglers hanging around like a rash that have driven from god knows where to see Zac.....some of those are of the paparazzi sort also... A very strange thing to deal with in the Outback, particularly my town.
The locals, have spotted the 'out-of-towners' straightaway. Crazed people went as far as sleeping outside of Zac's & his girlfriends house, hoping to catch a glimpse of him. A great thing about the local outback folk is that they have taken care of him and kept their mouths zipped. They even got the police to kick these crazies out of town. Its given him a chance to relax and enjoy a drink at our local bar, experience some peace & quiet, and be a normal human being for a change!
Video courtesy of Ms. B.A Ferg
I also think the dreaded weather we've experienced has also somewhat forced the actors to get into character, probably quicker than they wanted!
Anyway, after two late nights and too much punch and people, I was out of there, and dreamed nothing more of a peaceful nights sleep back at El Noor Gardens with my chooks.
But I came home to this:
Arrrrgh!! Mother Earth got the better of my poor old hot house.
Thankfully, everyone still seems somewhat happy inside. This hot house has tested my patience more times that I can count, so I am therefore surrendering it back to Mother Earth.
It looks as though Mother Nature has already taken over. Here's me several months ago planting everything in a straight line... but Mother Nature has other plans...I should know better, there is no such thing as a linear reality!
Everything growing so intuitively... as it should be!
I will keep watering and just let the hot house take its course...
Other plants and trees have withstood the crazy weather patterns also. The pomegranate tree is bearing fruit, I hope it stays on!
Same with the nectarine tree...
Even my wild nectarine tree that came up from seed has produced her first fruit ever!
Artichokes in full bloom also. The insects love these. The flowers smell so sweet.
This artichoke has become somewhat of a 'perennial'... coming back for the 2nd time and producing even more fruit than the last. Who knows? Maybe an ongoing thing!
The beautiful old peach tree is looking lovely, but I don't think there is much fruit on her this year. I think I will have to wait until next '21 season.
Edible flower borage about to go to seed. The ants love the nectar from these delicate little flowers and are the main pollinators.
Wishing you all a lovely holiday all over the world, wherever you may be. What are your plans? Perhaps you will be out in the garden like me....
Or perhaps for you in the Northern hemisphere you will be next to a nice warm fire with a cup of tea & hot buttery jam scones!
See you in 2021,
Blessings & Radiance
Andulairah, Shallaha, Deema, Erethae & Venus