Well whoops a month has actually flown by since our last update at Thanks Giving and so all those beautiful pictures we took of autumn colours and bright leaves are now totally insignificant because as far as leaf coverage goes, it's now looking pretty bare out there.
Thanks to a frost in the 2nd week of October the flower growing season is officially over at Oliver Farm and although that is a huge relief to us workwise - it's amazing how much tidying up and prep work remains to be done before we settle in for the winter. So there is no putting up our feet just yet.
However, at the first whiff of garlic planting season I made my annual escape to Europe where I enjoyed an indulgent week in Rioja and Ribera del Duero with a wonderful group of clients, some outstanding wine and the fabulous MW Derek Smedley, if you ever want the heads up on wine then check out his website.
My absence meant that Jamie and the dogs were left to their own devices for 2 weeks and faced with planting all that garlic himself for the 2nd year in a row, this year Jamie developed a cunning garlic clove-sized hole-making tool. Think it would have worked excellently if our dopey doggies hadn't decided that digging in the dirt was their favourite activity also.
Now that I'm back and the garlic is planted, with the weather turning cooler, we have turned our attention to our loose leaf tea business. Many of our herbs are dry so are being blended into all sorts of tasty infusions. I have also been busy grinding up a wonderful concoction of spices for both our black tea and Rooibos Chai blends. We spent a long and enjoyable day at the Valley Tea Festival on Saturday and they were a great success so all that grinding was worth it. For me it's not quite the same as tasting wine but it's the next best thing!