Poor old Paddy. He woke up on Monday morning with what can at best be classed as terrible constipation. Horses are trickle feeders, and their gut relies on a small steady intake of food to keep everything moving. Colic, usually down to impactions or eating something that has decided to disagree with them, is never a good thing in horses and ponies, and down the years we’ve lost one or two to such things. Hence when it appeared that Paddy had spent a whole night rolling around his stable in discomfort, we called up Sean the vet immediately.
It seems that concentrating on range cookers for a while seems to be attracting them. Until a couple of weeks ago we’d never heard of the Wellstood Two (or WD 36) stove, and then having just put one in, out of the blue we are very kindly offered another.
This is a busy time here at Lackan, not least because July appears to be the most popular month so far for visitors to Birch Cottage and the Off Grid Horse Box. We’re kept busy preparing the spaces for guests, the process of being self catering hosts is a constant learning curve, and we’re delighted that so many people are enjoying being here at the farm.
Rocket Mass Heaters are a really efficient way to heat a space, that you can build yourself for a relatively low cost. They are designed to burn at a high temperature, which results in less smoke and a more efficient fire. Ours is always a source of fascination, and when lit, the big room is warm in no time. Steve is off to Mayo in September to help run a course in building one, and in the meantime, here’s a reminder of how ours was put together.
Having put the rainwater harvesting in, we were left with a 4″ pipe running across the concrete outside the cottage, not ideal. It was always our aim to pull up all the concrete slab in front of the house and incorporate the area in to the garden – our permaculture Zone 0 through which we constantly come and go. On reflection though, we need some parking space for visitors, and so decided to pull up just the area beyond our front door, which is the bit we come and go through anyway.