>After the full moon / Après la pleine lune


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This morning as the moon set behind the hill at 7.45 a.m., it was clearly waning, slightly less than a full circle of light above the Mediterranean pines.  According to the Gardeners’ Calendar, today was a good day to plant potatoes.

La lune s’est couchée derrière la colline à 7.45 ce matin.  On a pu voir qu’elle décroit, elle était un peu moins qu’un plein cercle de lumière au-dessus des pins mediterrannéens.  Selon le Gardener’s Calendar, aujourd’hui était du bon temps pour planter les pommes de terres.

We had already prepared the ground, so we planted most of our potatoes.  There are a few left to plant later.

On avait déjà préparé la terre, donc on a planté la plupart de nos pommes de terre.  Il y en restent quelques unes pour plutard.


Last night friends came to supper and I made ragout d’escoubille, an Occitan stew of pork, chicken, sausage, vegetables and olives.  I used the Lucques olives we were given by these same friends in November, which are now ready to eat.

Hier soir nous avons invité des amis et j’ai préparé le ragout d’escoubille, un plat occitan du pork, poulet, saucisse, légumes et olives.  J’ai ajouté les olives lucques que ces amis nous ont donné en novembre qui sont prêtes à manger.


We served the ragout with oak-aged Chateau des Adouzes 2000 red wine – a good strong-flavoured accompaniment for this dish.  The recipe for ragout d’escoubille is on the Mediterranean cuisine blog.

On a servi le ragout avec du vin rouge du Chateau des Adouzes 2000 veilli au futs de chêne.  La recette du ragout d’escoubille est sur le blog Mediterranean cuisine.

Our first ever lemon! / Notre premier citron!

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Today I picked our first ever lemon.  It’s small, but wonderful, and two slices of it went very well in gin and tonics this evening!



Not really anything to do with gardening, or food or wine, but this was a first for me. We were driving back at 11 p.m. on the day of the full moon last Friday. The moon was low behind us, lighting up that half of the sky, while ahead of us there were dark rain clouds over the hills. It had just rained, so everything was glistening in the moonlight. Ahead of us, arching over a village a couple of kilometres away, was a wide low silvery bow, which moved away from us as we approached, but stayed visible in the distance as we drove home. I wasnt even sure that such a thing was possible, but I said Is it a moonbow? Ive since had this confirmed by an Internet search – apparently moonbows are rare, except in some areas of the world near large waterfalls, like Cumberland Falls, Kentucky, USA. They depend on certain conditions: a full moon that is low in the sky and rain the other side of the sky from the moon. Slow-shutter speed photos show that they have all the colours of a daytime rainbow, its just that the human eye cant see colours in the dark. It was a very special sight, and one which I dont suppose Ill ever see again. You can see a photo of one at http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A1143460