Tag Archives: Garsons

A picnic and fruit picking

Yesterday we spent a lovely day at Claremont Landscape Gardens and Garsons PYO Farm.

We started off at Claremont, arriving at lunch time and enjoying a delicious picnic in the shade by the lake.

Once everyone had eaten we set off round the lake to discover and explore. The kids and Gordon walked up the hill, all the way to the top, and ran back down again! Then we headed over to the woodland, explored a ditch, hunted for grasshoppers and found a cherry tree with some delicious cherries growing on it that Gordon and Ben enjoying tasting!Claremont 1As were walked round the grassy area and woodland we counted butterflies and recorded our results with the Big Butterfly Count. We saw lots of Ringlets and Small Whites and a Gatekeeper.

We continued round the lake, watching the fish jump out of the water to catch flies and the dragonflies zipping around. At one point we stopped to watch a dragonfly flying around the edge of the water and Jasmine noticed a Southern Hawker Dragonfly laying eggs in the bank right below where we were standing! We watched  it for quite a long time, having never been that close to a dragonfly before we were all amazed by how big it was!Southern Hawker DragonflyWe walked round the lake and back to the car park, and then drove the 5 minutes to Garsons Farm.

We have only been to Garsons once so far this year, for the asparagus picking, so there was lots we wanted to get today! We started with gooseberries and raspberries then went to the redcurrant field. Next was carrots, peas, mange tout and finally cucumber.Garsons PYOWhile the kids do enjoy picking the fruit and vegetables, they also enjoy taste testing what they can! I don’t mind them eating a few, however I try and make sure most of what they pick goes into the punnets!

It was so late by the time we’d finished at the farm that we decided to eat out at Pizza Hut, the kids favourite! After dinner of pizza and ice cream we went home, well past the kids normal bedtime but well worth the late night as we’d had such a lovely day.

Once all 3 kids were tucked up and asleep, Gordon and I started the long process of removing the redcurrants from the stems, ready for me to make jam today.

And that is where I must go now, The fruit was stewed and the juice strained over night. Now to begin my first jam of the year.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Asparagus Soup

Making use of the absolutely delicious asparagus we picked at Garsons Farm, I made Asparagus Soup for lunch today. I can’t describe how nice it was.. you just have to try it for yourself!

Asparagus Soup

Best served with warm, crusty bread!

You will need:

Small knob of butter
1tbsp olive oil
450g asparagus (approx), finely sliced
2 shallots, roughly chopped
600ml vegetable stock
5tbsp double cream

  1. Heat the oil and butter in a saucepan over a medium heat.
  2. Add the shallots and fry for four minutes until softened. 
  3. Add the asparagus and fry for a further two minutes. 
  4. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for 7 to 10 minutes until the asparagus is cooked. 
  5. Remove from the heat. Roughly blend using a hand blender. Add the double cream and season to taste. Blend until smooth.
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Garsons Farm and Claremont Landscape Garden

After another very lazy morning this morning – I hardly saw the big 2 as they were playing LEGO upstairs – we had an afternoon outdoors at our local Pick Your Own farm and then Claremont Landscape Garden, another National Trust property, 5 minutes away from the farm. I say local, but Garsons Farm is around 30 minutes away from us by car.  I love it there though so try and go as regularly as possible during the time it is open. It opened, for the first time this year, last Friday for Asparagus picking and I have been more than keen to go but after only 2 days, the fields were closed again for regrowth. They opened them again today and I didn’t want to miss out this time! The fruit and veg we have picked in the last 2 years has always been delicious and there is nothing better than field to plate in just a few hours!

Initially the kids weren’t keen on picking the asparagus, which is why I said we’d go to Claremont afterwards, but once we got there they loved it and I’m sure we picked far more asparagus than we needed!Asparagus

Once we had our asparagus we drove over to Claremont.  I knew it would be beautiful at this time of year and I wasn’t disappointed. The bluebells are stunning and the Rhododendrons are starting to open in places. It is also teeming with new life and as we walked round the lake we saw goslings, ducklings and coot chicks. We also saw a Tufted Duck, a Shelduck and the resident Black Swan.Animals

While I was busy taking pictures (!) the kids had a great time exploring. They ran up and rolled down the mound, collected feathers and sticks, found a “secret cave” in the bushes and splashed in puddles. They loved seeing all the baby animals but weren’t that keen on the hissing geese when they got too close!  Exploring ClaremontFinally we walked round to the play area, which is also fantastic! Inspired by the history of Claremont the play area offers a modern take on several features of the garden and includes a castle with ladders, a climbing wall and slide, a playhouse and a bridge. The kids loved it!Playing at ClaremontToday we only walked around the lake and I know there is much more to discover at Claremont. Thomas declared it his “favourite place” as we walked back to the car! We will definitely be going back soon.Claremont Landscape Garden

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