A walk down the main farm road leads straight past the Eatwell Farm orchards, and during this time of year I cannot help but be drawn to the striking pink of the blossoms, especially when they’re surrounded by lush, green crops and a bright sky dotted with clouds.
I gaze up at the poplars which have grown so tall in the 20 years since Nigel planted them to protect the crops from wind.
It's not long before I've found the sheep, led to them by their soft bleating. Newly born lambs are tucked and curled by their mothers. When they stand, they're curiously steady on their little legs, born to wander alongside their moms and venture out when ready. The twin lambs born on the farm just a few weeks ago chase a stray chicken, kicking about and baa-ing as it scurries away.
And then I come face to face with this guy, easily the goat with the most style around. I pluck a few strands of grass that he can't reach from his side of the fence and offer them to him in exchange for a quick photo. He munches them steadily and stands still enough for me to snap this shot before strutting away.
On the periphery of the farm, you get a grand view of the rows of poplars, standing tall and providing a much needed wind break. To the right (and out of view) are some of the hen houses. They've been moved into verdant pasture where they cackle about and scratch up all that the cover crop, thoughtfully planted by Nigel, has to offer. The cover crop, sheep, and hens are all part of a greater plan to add fertility to the soil and move into the ways of permaculture.
Starting in May, we'll have a farm walk and tour available each month so that you can join Nigel, Lorraine and me and see how Eatwell Farm is transitioning into permaculture. You can find details for our farm events, including tours, at www.eatwell.com/events.