Technical problems!

You may have noticed that there haven’t been any updates to this website recently… Thanks to an automated software update that didn’t complete, (and a corrupt database backup), it’s been impossible to access the admin area of the site to add new content. However, normal service has now been restored; apologies for not providing your fix of DSA news!

IMPORTANT, MONTHLY MEETINGS ARE MOVING!!!

The Gremlin Club is no longer available so from the Wednesday 9th March 2016 DSA monthly meetings will start at 8pm at the following venue:

Carmarthen Veterinary Centre
Llysonnen Rd
Llanlwch
Carmarthen
SA31 3SA

You can see a map here

Next to new cheese processing plant on the road to the Market and Showground off the A40
Parking on site.  Toilets on ground and first floor.  Lift available.

Meeting room on first floor will be signed.

Complimentary tea and coffee available.  But no bar.

Capacity 50 and you will no longer have to sit sideways to face forward and leave the meeting with a cricked neck

February 2016 Meeting

Wednesday 10th February 8pm. Monthly Meeting at Gremlin Club, Carmarthen

This will be 2016 DSA AGM

January 2016 Events

24th January 2016 1pm. Annual New Year Lunch at the Smith’s Arms in Llangyndeyrn.

We need to let the pub know final numbers and menu choices by the 21st of January, along with a £5 deposit per person. Come to the January meeting, sign up and pay up or visit/contact your nearest committee member, contact details always in the yellow information panel of the newsletter. Alternatively you can use the Contact page on this site. Menu choices are below.

SMITHS ARMS MENU

New Years lunch Sunday 24th January 1:00pm

three courses @ £11.95
two courses @ £9.95

to start:

Chef”s leek and potato soup with rustic bread
Garlic mushrooms on toasted ciabatta
Pan fried patties of chicken and pork with Indian spices and sweet chilli sauce
Salmon and cod fishcakes with tartare sauce

main course:

Grilled fillet of hake with roasted peppers and pesto
Roasted turkey breast with all the trimmings
Pan fried breast of chicken with a bacon, red wine and thyme sauce
Vegetable wellington with béarnaise sauce

All served with seasonal vegetables and potatoes

To finish:

Selection of homemade desserts

October Meeting, Wed 14th, 8:00PM, Gremlin Club, Carmarthen

If you’re anything like us, early autumn means a glut of various fruit and vegetables which need to be preserved so they last through the year. If so, this talk is for you. The ladies from the WI will be here to tell you all you need to know about jams & chutneys. See you there.

Upcoming farm walk 19/07/15 11:00 am start

Sunday 19th July Farm Walk with Tracy and Allen Goldsmith starting at 11.00am. meet the  Shetland cattle, the very rare short legged llamas (southdown sheep), goats, pigs, shire horse and poultry, the walk will take in 27 acres, a badgers’ set, woods and rare wild flowers. The holding has not been farmed for forty years so plenty of examples of bad fencing from others and the importance of ditches. Boots and stick are recommended, if walking a dog please keep on lead. What more could you want?

Directions & Address available in Newsletter

DSA Summer Barbecue 08/07/15 7:30PM

bbqThis Wednesday, (8th July) the DSA is holding it’s annual barbecue, at John and Penny Hooton’s holding in Llangynog, The fun starts at 7.30pm and this year is free, to include Burgers, buns, sausages, tea, coffee and soft drinks.

A contribution to communal table, in form of salads and sweets would be appreciated.

Bring something to sit on, something to eat from & with, and something to drink from. If people want to enjoy a tipple please bring your own.

Address & Directions available in Newsletter.

 

Report on Farm walk at Matthew & Debbie Kieboom’s holding

A breezy but dry day saw some 15 of us gather for a farm walk at Bwythyn Y Rhosyn, the home of Debbie and Matthew Kieboon. North of Cardigan and not far from the coast at Aberporth, their 5 acre holding is tucked away down a narrow lane. The first thing we saw as we came through the garden gate was the amazing straw-build round house. This is a work in progress with on-going work to the interior. The idea is to use the space to supplement the accommodation in the main house, this will be useful as they often have wwooffers to help on the holding. If anyone is interested in this building technique then contact Debbie or Matthew as they do hold working party days.

The holding carries a wide range of poultry from quail to geese and Debbie sells eggs from her “shopette” at the garden gate. At this time of year some of the ducks and geese were busy incubating clutches of eggs and we saw several family groups free ranging around the lawns. The main field is some two acres and the plan is to divide this into smaller paddocks to allow for more efficient management of the grazing. Most of the goats were happily grazing and browsing here apart from the billy who, in true goat fashion, had decided that the grass is always greener on the other side and had hopped over the fence! We were joined on our meander by the wethergoat “Baby Satan” who you may remember form Debbie’s talk earlier in the year – he was very gentle and curious and not at all satanical! Her herd is now closed and she has registered her stock to add value to any offspring sold; male kids are raised for meat and the milk produced is used in the house and processed into cheese and kefir. The animals are fed on an organic multi-species pellet bought in bulk from High Peak, Debbie has chosen this because the protein element is provided by peas and field beans rather than soya which she feels can pose a health risk to both the animal and ultimately yourselves as the end consumer. Sharing the paddock were several groups of breeding hens in their “hen tractors” these mobile house and run combinations allow for easy moving onto fresh grass the houses have slatted floors so the manure self-spreads and fertilises the ground. The houses were ingeniously constructed using a wide variety of reclaimed materials. Debbie keeps several breeds of chickens and rates Copper Marans very highly as well as the Bresse Gauloises, a dual purpose French breed with the hens laying a good number of buff eggs and the cockerels maturing at 20 weeks to give a 4 kg bird.

The field is bordered by an area of ancient woodland now in the process of being re-juvenated with plans to coppice. Sometime after they had moved in, Debbie’s father hacked through years of neglect only to discover a good sized pond which is now being enjoyed by the geese and ducks. They keep the auto-sexing Pilgrim and American Buff geese, as well as Muscovy and Welsh Magpie ducks. There were more poultry enclosures on the edge of the woodland with various hens including a rehabilitated s Silkie hen, nursed back to health after surviving a fox attack and Raymond Blanc another Bresse Gauloises cockerel. We wandered back up to the house through the vegetable patch; this had been raised beds but is now being converted to a no dig system as the paths between the original beds took too much maintenance. Cane fruit is grown along fences which support the plants and in turn the plants act as wind breaks. Debbie grows lots of herbs including lemon balm and mint which she cuts and dries to feed to her goats during the winter. The heavily laden fig tree was admired and envied in equal measure!

Matthew did a sterling job providing tea and coffee when we retired to the round house for our picnic lunch, and yet again I came away inspired and with some good ideas to try at home – not to mention a dozen guinea fowl eggs that are now in the incubator!

By Claire Wadley