A Frugal, Green and Self-Sufficiency Round Up

How have we been Green, Frugal and Self-Sufficient this week?

1. Wellies* for R – a kind lady advertised a pair of wellies size 18-24 months on freecycle (and other assorted bits – but it was the wellies that caught my eye!) She was pregnant and about 5 days off her due date.  How that feels in a hot June is very fresh in my memory so I took over some of my homemade Black Forest Brownies as a thank you present for the wellies.

Wellington Boots for little Dinosaurs

Wellington Boots for little Dinosaurs

(*Wellies is a UK slang term for waterproof rubber boots, that is because in the UK such boots are called Wellington Boots.)

2. Gooseberry and Elderflower Jelly – I’ll do a proper write up of this later.  But inspired by Dawn of Doing it For Ourselves making Elderflower Jelly and the birds having eaten most of our Gooseberries, I decided to make up a Gooseberry and Elderflower Jelly recipe. That saved me a job of topping and tailing as well.  Doesn’t it look fabulous!

Gooseberry and Elderflower Jelly

Gooseberry and Elderflower Jelly

3. Birthday Bunting – I finished making bunting to decorate the house for R’s birthday in a couple of weeks.  It is re-useable (I’m going to keep adding to it each year until it is a huge family joke) and has no packaging and it looks bright and silly.  Perfect!

4. Comfrey – we don’t have any in our garden, but it is the best of all the Green Manures and a staple of permaculture nutrient design.  Luckily my Father Out-Law has a huge amount with pretty blue/pink flowers.  As always I only have to ask for a cutting or a bit of root and he is back with a spade and a pot before I know it, generously dividing some up for me.  That saved me from buying some seed/plug plants from a garden centre. We also took our tetrapaks over to put in their kerbside recycling scheme (they are on a different scheme to us and we can’t recycling tetrapaks easily) and I went home with some spare jam jars – which came in handy for 2 above.

5. Straw from the Pig Pen – The straw we get for our pigs is a waste product from a local farm.  After it has been used as pig bedding it goes in the hot composter and the cold composter as important dry, woody material. I am so pleased we get two uses out of something which would otherwise go to waste.



6 thoughts on “A Frugal, Green and Self-Sufficiency Round Up

  1. frugalinsuffolksimple@gmail.com

    Lovely looking jelly. We watered with comfrey tea again tonight. It stinks! hope it does some good

    1. Becky A Post author


      Thanks for the kind comment.

      I tasted some of the bits of jelly I was testing for setting point and it was delicious. Like Summer in a jar.

      I’d heard from a friend about how badly Comfrey Tea smells but she swears by it for tomatoes and I guess it saves money on buying Tomorite.

  2. Dawn McHugh

    You have just remind me to dig up some of the comfrey, thank you, Elderflower and Gosseberry together sound great, I really shouldnt make any more stuff now. I will wait until next year.
    I really fancy making your brownies from the other day but all baking stuff is now packed.

    1. Becky A Post author

      I remember having to dig up plants and take cutting etc when we moved – moving house as a Gardner is so much more complicated than for other people!

      The brownies are delicious – but they will wait for the move I’m sure. Why don’t you make a list of all the things you want to make now but shouldn’t because of the move and then when you’ve settled in you’ll have lots of ideas to explore?

  3. MargotBarbara

    Black Forest Brownies sound amazing! You’ve reminded me I need to put some comfrey on my allotment – does it spread like mad though? I might need to contain it somehow…

    1. Becky A Post author


      The brownies are really really good, I’ve made them twice now and they are a huge hit!

      Comfrey does spread like mad. I haven’t planted the root cutting out yet because we are still deciding where to put it and whether to contain it. It is like nettles, horseradish, ground elder and mint in that regard.


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