Shinrin-yoku - Forest Bathing
In 1982, Japan launched a nation health programme called ‘forest bathing’ or ‘shinrin-yoku’ which means spending more time around trees. No jogging, no workouts just simply spending time amongst trees.
It is not just about the fresh air but also helps reduce our stress levels and our blood pressure as well as reducing depression.
Regular contact with nature really does improve our well being. So why not try a few of our recommended local countryside walks.
'Pinch, punch, first day of the month, white rabbits!'
We hope you have good luck this month.
'Pinch, punch, first day of the month, white rabbits!' Why do we say this?
It dates back centuries, with the first known written mention in 1420. It is thought to have derived from farmers who carried a rabbit's foot as a lucky charm and so saying rabbits on the special day brings luck.
According to one article even 'President Roosevelt..has confessed.. that he says 'white rabbits' on the first of every month..and he would not think of omitting the utterance on any account.'
We have no idea were 'a pinch and a punch' comes from!
As one of Britain’s best loved and colourful group of insects, ladybirds are currently hibernating. Typically different species will usually hibernate in different places; some shelter under tree bark, others sleep under leaf litter, but unusually in this photo you can see they have all grouped together, still hibernating just inside an old farm door.
In a more natural environment, they would sleep through to March or April. On the farm, they benefit the crop by controlling the aphids population.
Fascinated by variety within this small group of ladybirds, from the familiar red with symmetrical black spots to orange, yellow, black and even camouflaged brown ones with 2, 7, 14 spots.
However it is black or Harlequin ladybirds that gardeners and farmers are concerned about. These invasive incomers are gobbling up native species.
These ‘alien’ species were first spotted in the UK just over a decade ago. They come from Asia and America and their numbers have grown significantly. They pose a threat to native ladybirds, a little like red squirrels being overtaken by the more dominant grey squirrel.
Relax at Andrewsfield
After a long day, one of our favourite places to go is Andrews Airfield, just a short walk from Golden Grove.
With a cup of tea and a piece of cake you can watch light aircraft take off and land on the grass runway. There's also a bar open daily until 9pm.
Andrewsfield was built by the Americans during WW2, named after the American General Andrews. With a visit, you may even learn to fly!
Welcome the new calves
Calving season is well underway.
Rob and Stephen are doing an amazing job of making sure our small suckler herd are keeping warm and cosy despite the recent bad weather. With daily top up bedding of straw and a constant supply of silage, this is their routine for the next few months.
Calving can happen any time of the day and night. A few days ago we had a mother give birth to twins and alas one was rejected. Fortunately it had a little of the life giving colostrum and then it was a mad dash to make up some powdered milk. It has survived so far and is now under the watchful care and being hand reared. A time consuming job but like having a new born child it needs regular feeding and plenty of attention so eventually it can join the herd again.
Spring Is Coming!
The last great landscape designer
2018 is the bicentenary of Humphry Repton, the last great landscape designer of the eighteenth century. Throughout the year, across the country, the Gardens Trust will be coordinating Repton 200 events, celebrating his work.
Repton was born in 1752 in Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, the very year that Saling Grove was built. After a few years of career stop starts, he set himself up as a landscape gardener. He went on to design several hundred English landscapes and gardens becoming a worthy successor to the great Capability Brown.
His work can be seen at Sherringham Park in Norfolk, Woburn Abbey in Bedfordshire, Uppark House in West Sussex and many more.
Follow our website for more information about 2018 exhibitions, talks and study days.