About Me

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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international mushroom consultants. About living in Italy, the Veneto area near Venice; in Indonesia, central Java. Why we love the southeast of the United States and moved back from Italy. Our love for gardening, the botanical way. Sharing with you our manifold treasures from exotic places and even offering several at Spectrenoir: http://ebay.to/2xI69uc, for others to enjoy. As well as high end silver items from Giovanni Raspini, Italy. I also do classes and consulting... too much to list here! Love to bring back some romance and quality to the daily life of others... 

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Husband Pieter visiting Mushrooms in the Cave - Bradford-on-Avon in England

For husband Pieter it sure was not the first time to visit a mushroom farm inside the caves, as he would be doing in South-West England.
Pieter did sleep and stay at the home of the manager. Originally in this area were flax growers.
Mushroom Growing 1963 click on link for short 2:41 min. video
Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire.
Once the stone that built Bath was found in this mine, now it is used for growing mushrooms.
Various shots of women wearing miner's helmets. The women walk in the entrance to the mine carrying buckets, lead by team leader Dolly Laywood. Inside, the women pick the mushrooms growing in stacks of trays and place them in baskets. C/U of mushrooms. M/S of cave roof. C/U of candle stick attached to the cave wall.
These Marl Caves consisted of soft stone, that was sawn out for building cities!
Bradford-on-Avon Museum shows MUSHROOM CULTIVATION just click it.
Photos with the beds on the ground must be from before WWII era as they were growing already inside wooden trays by the time husband Pieter visited them.
BBC NEWS 4 April 2011 Bradford on Avon mushroom farm cave tenants sought click link
A 'rare opportunity' to rent space for 'unusual uses'...
No more commercial mushroom growing!
 Saturday September 29th 2018
Police find £1 million cannabis cave in hidden tunnels below picturesque village at disused quarry just click on link

So that was quite a change from quarry to commercial mushroom growing and into cannabis...

WHO would have guessed this at the time that husband Pieter visited?!

Thanks for reading along about husband Pieter's history in mushroom cultivation.


Husband Pieter's Fond Relationship with Mushroom Growers in  the U.K. | previous post about Pieter's very first visit to a Mushroom Farm in England

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Spring 2019 is Slowly Arriving

Just want to show you some blossom photos before we continue with more mushroom related history.
We had some rainy days and that is not best for Camellias, as they easily brown.
Here are four pink beauties together inside a creamware cachepot on February 21.
On our kitchen bay window sill and as you can see, outside the grass is still brown!
An oval Wedgwood Cream Color on Cream Color bowl filled with White Camellias.
On a rainy day, February 19, I filled this silver plated vase with some fragrant Ehrlicheer Narcissus.
My hands reflect inside the glossy silver.
This vase is half a century old, a sweet gift from my sister Diny on my birthday!
Memories carried across the ocean...
Had to place this vase on the living room window sill for some light as it was a gloom day!
Longing for being able to use our balcony again but that takes some time.
This is our second Japanese Magnolia tree on Mom's 5th Birthday in heaven, February 12.
Closer view.
This is actually half of a tree as a big tree fell into it years ago and damaged half of it.
But it has grown back remarkably well over the years and we treasure its blossoms as they can be seen from the bay window in the kitchen and from the veranda.
This is the other tree that is looking a lot fuller. On the opposite side it will become fuller now since last year we had a big limb from the neighboring oak tree sawn off so the light can now reach the Magnolia tree.
A heavenly view from the kitchen bay window.
Look at all the leaves on the roof near the gutter... from heavy rain and wind!
This is five days later, most of the petals are knocked down from heavy rain...
Here you see that the tree had been growing more to the left, towards the light and on the right sight it will gradually fill in and become more rounded. That usually takes five years, Mother Nature takes its time for healing.

Hope you also are slowly enjoying spring flowers and of course the southern hemisphere still enjoys end of summer blossoms. 

Thanks for your visit and comments!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Visiting A.G. Linfield Mushroom Compost Facility in England

One of the numerous visits to England for husband Pieter J.C. Vedder was as a study for building a Dutch Compost Turner, as they already used in England.
A.G. Linfield Ltd., Chesswood Nurseries (mushrooms) was one of the largest mushroom producers in England.
 Harold Linfield, as well as his wife Cecily are also long time friends!
Beginning with this photo, taken a lot later than the actual visit, but it shows the person the story is about.
Husband Pieter J.C. Vedder to the left, at a B'day party of one of his students who joined Campbell Soup's mushroom business here in the US.
The date was August 17, 1984 and to the right is Jan Thielen from Lottum, The Netherlands.
A long time friend of Pieter and I would say, from both of us, as I knew him since my early years at the Training Centre.
Sadly Mr. Thielen is no longer alive but his son is still running the business.
This photo is taken by husband Pieter in 1962 when they studied how to build such a compost turner.
Actually Jan Thielen did and thus THILOT was born...
In the photo is from left to right: Ben Ambrosius, Pieter Bels and Jan Veerman from the I.T.T. Wageningen (Technical Institute Wageningen University).
Husband Pieter did publish a booklet for the 25th anniversary of the Dutch C.N.C. from where this photo with under title comes.
During the study visit to a compost company in England in 1962. Seated on a compost turning machine, Mr. Veerman, Bels and Ambrosius are philosophizing about the future.
Jan Thielen is not in the picture but he was walking around, for studying the mechanics etc.
Britain from above: showing A.G. Linfield's Chesswood Nurseries (mushrooms) and the surrounding countryside, Thakeham, 1947. 
In the 1960s England was way ahead in the mushroom growing business but the Dutch caught on and became the world's leading industry.
This is from the 1986 publication: Moving Ahead in Mushroom Growing
The Industrialization of mushroom growing
Jan Thielen and son Ruud are pictured in front of their signature yellow colored equipment.
The BIG difference between England and The Netherlands was, is, that they started growing in shelf beds instead of the wooden trays used in England and also very much in the USA.
That way, things could be mechanized to the fullest and speeding up the labor.
You can enlarge this English text for reading...
Jan Thielen from Lottum, hence the combination Thi-Lot, was already producing various tools, just like his father did. Pieter got to know Jan from before ending up in the mushroom growing business.
At one time Pieter was specialized in asparagus and Jan had built for him a special seeding machine, that Pieter designed... so he always remembered his long-time friend.
Son Ruud Thielen now is part of GTL Europe Equipment | GTL Europe
Thilot machines have an excellent reputation in the world of composting and mushroom growing. Even after decades of service, many of these instantly recognizable yellow machines still work every day.
Thilot Holland (founded in 1966, Lottum) has developed over the past 50 years into a successful, professional manufacturer of reliable and durable composting and mushroom growing equipment.

Related links: 
Husband Pieter's Fond Relationship with Mushroom Growers in  the U.K. | previous post about Pieter's very first visit to a Mushroom Farm in England

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Husband Pieter met with Darlington Spawn Makers and Fred Atkins in England

Yes, husband Pieter was very, very fond of the U.K. and loved going there!
Around 1960 Pieter visited the Darlington Spawn Makers in England
For those of you that have no clue how mushrooms are being grown, this is a MUST see short 4 min. video about how they take the spores from a disinfected, mature mushroom and inoculate on some agar to incubate and next let it overgrow on rye grain.
This one mushroom contains millions of spores!
Just click Growing And Eating Aka Mushrooms 1966 and enjoy.
Pieter met with Fred C. Atkins, the very first Sinden Award Winner and also an author, like my husband Pieter.
Mushroom growing houses at the Noble-Atkins mushroom farm near Peterborough in the U.K.
Growers Ben Noble and Fred Atkins

Fred Atkin's book MUSHROOM GROWING TO-DAY from MCMLVI (1956) is in Pieter's library.
Fred C. Atkins also was the Editor of THE MUSHROOM JOURNAL Official Publication of the Mushroom Grower's Association of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Via link below this post you can find a letter that Fred wrote to Pieter after receiving his publication of Modern Mushroom Growing.


Related links:
1978 - P.J.C. Vedder's Modern Mushroom Growing Book Published in English | previous post by me where Fred Atkins' letter is shown.
SO Happy for Having Met Another WRITING Mushroom Wife in the U.K. | previous post by me
Husband Pieter's Fond Relationship with Mushroom Growers in  the U.K. | previous post about Pieter's very first visit to a Mushroom Farm in England

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Lovely Birthday Dinner at Ristorante da Maria

Yep, another Birthday has passed by - way too rapidly but I've started another year once more.
It was such a lovely day with sunshine, warm weather and lots of LOVE.
Happy me at Ristorante da Maria, enjoying a romantic birthday dinner...
Wearing my silk Escada blouse with roses and woolen Escada cardigan with roses.
Husband Pieter enjoying his dinner... Lady Chef Maria is the BEST and her 5-course dinners are always special.
Apart from celebrating a blissful relationship!
This is me on my Birthday and yes, the Japanese Magnolias were opening up fast!
My Pieter against the picket fence as the best view was from the neighbor's garden as there's the sun early morning!
That is today, February 12, on Mom's 5th Birthday in Heaven...
Magnolia petals are falling off.
Lovely birthday weather! It was 24ºC or 75ºF and next day 27ºC or 80ºF and that's when we biked together in shorts for the first time.
With all the phone calls, video calls etc. etc. I had my breakfast kind of late... but happy with sunshine and with Pieter's red roses in a vase and some fresh camellias from our garden.
With a few supplements, I've made it so far... Eating healthy and drinking only coffee at breakfast time, with cocoa added. A mug of unsweetened soy milk from Trader Joe's, half an avocado, half a banana and a mandarin. Multi grain bread from Costco with cheese and crunchy almond butter without salt.
A lovely bouquet from a lady from our R.C. Church...
Wish I could pass on the fragrance of those lilies!
Lily buds have fully opened, but one at the top left. Pure PERFUME...

Hope you are also enjoying some sunshine in your life.

Sending you the very best for your area to enjoy!

Friday, February 8, 2019

SO Happy for Having Met Another WRITING Mushroom Wife in the U.K.

Both, my husband Pieter and I myself, have met thousands of mushroom people world wide.
At the Practical Mushroom Training College in Horst, The Netherlands we met thousands of students over the many years. Also short courses in German, English and in Dutch.
Pieter spoke at so many International Congresses and he did Seminars etc.
Both of us always have loved people, guess that is a MUST for doing such a job as we did; educating and training others for making a better living.
Mushroom Wife, by Joan Barton
September, 30 in 1988 during the MGA Conference in Cambridge, she wrote this message for both of us when I purchased her book.
She wrote about their second Farm Walk, in 1962...
In my previous post I did mention husband Pieter going to the U.K. in 1958 with his boss, Pieter Bels  and many other times followed.
It actually was Dr. Henriëtte Bels-Koning and her husband Pieter Bels... but that is not important.
Husband Pieter has been numerous times to the U.K. and he also went with his students there, after finishing their education at the Practical Mushroom Training College in Horst.
He either took his students to the U.K., to Switzerland, Italy, Denmark, Belgium and Germany to a large mushroom farm.
Such Farm Visits always proved beneficial for both parties!
Exchanging experiences is a big win-win.
Mushroom Wife by Joan Barton is still available at Amazon, just click.
It sure is a great book, also contains recipes. Have to read it once again - provided I 'EVER' find the time... 
Trying so hard to finish all the writings for husband Pieter to enjoy!
Praying that I will finish them in a timely manner, God willing.
Just came across this:
Slaugham Millennium Seating click link for source.
This gentleman, who meanwhile has passed away, did some research on the Barton mushroom farm, how it came about.
Hugh Barton was a demobbed airman during WWII and lived with his wife Joan in a war-time Nissen hut and set up trials for mushroom growing in another Nissen hut.
Their product was being sent to London restaurants for lucrative profits.
Husband Pieter has been to their Winterpick mushroom farm several times, in combination with MGA conferences and such.
Guess both are no longer alive but no doubt they have children and grandchildren alive!
Very fond memories, more so for husband Pieter since he knew them for decades.
Wish I still had a list of MGA members...

Thanks for your visit!

Related link:
Husband Pieter's Fond Relationship with Mushroom Growers in  the U.K. | previous post about Pieter's very first visit to a Mushroom Farm in England

Monday, February 4, 2019

Husband Pieter's Fond Relationship with Mushroom Growers in the U.K.

The very first mushroom farm that husband Pieter J.C. Vedder visited in the U.K. was the one from Peter Stanley-Evans. Together with his boss, Pieter Bels they did so in 1958, probably in combination with the Mushroom Fair. 
Peter Stanley-Evans grew mushrooms in metal military bunk beds, 2 high in greenhouses.
He also grew chrysanthemums.
This was the 1st real excursion with board members of the Mushroom Experiment Station and the Practical Training Center for Mushroom Growing.
Only husband Pieter's Dutch Publication was out at that time but he'd lectured at several International Congresses and wrote articles for Mushroom Magazines.
Husband Pieter is to the left, 2nd row standing. His boss, Pieter Bels is also in the 2nd row to the right and his wife Henriëtte Bels-Koning is to his left.
This was in front of a restaurant in the UK.
During one of husband Pieter's visits, Pieter Bels was talking with Peter Stanley-Evans Sr. and Pieter was discussing with Stanley-Evans Jr.
Pieter overheard Stanley-Evans Sr. say: 'Yeah, yeah, we have to realize that is the next generation...'
Sadly we learned that his (only ?) son had died rather young...

It was also this friend Peter Stanley-Evans, who invited husband Pieter with his entire class of students to his home for a formal Tea.

Below this post you find the link about the beautiful Tanner Krolle Attaché, Pieter got gifted from Peter Stanley-Evans...

Very interesting old black-and-white movie from 1958 to get an idea about how it was back then: Mushroom Farm Aka Airman At Home, Mushroom Fair 1958 This was not in bunk beds but small wooden trays.
Click the link above in pink, it is 2:39 min.
Fidlers Hall is mentioning the history of the mushroom farm. We don't know yet if Beth Stanley-Evans is maybe the daughter-in-law from said deceased son.
Just today, I got a very kind reply from a person managing the Fidlers Hall website and I will pass on the link to this post once it will get published this evening!
That way, Beth Stanley-Evans will get to read it...
Burwood House mentions the garden of Fidlers Hall, which belonged to her parents-in-law. Was that Peter Stanley-Evans?

It looks like on February 14, 2000, this very special and long-time mushroom friend left this earth.
Both of us did give a seminar for International Spawn Laboratory (in 1998 being absorbed by Sylvan) for their growers/customers.
That was held at Tewkesbury Park for two days in 1994.
We still have Peter Davies letter thanking the organizer.
To quote just a few lines:
"This is just a brief note to thank you very much for a tremendous two days at Tewkesbury last week. Your hospitality was most generous and of course in Pieter Vedder you had one of the most respected names in the mushroom world.
His talks were both very interesting and stimulating -- certainly food for thought when we return to our own farms..."

On February 10, 2008 published in the BBC NEWS | UK | England | Sussex | Struggling mushroom farm to close

The very MGA Mushroom Grower's Association in the U.K. also has dissolved...
Also the British monthly magazine 'THE MUSHROOM JOURNAL' is no longer.
Husband Pieter wrote several articles for them over the years.

Thanks for your visit!


Related link:
{Pieter’s Tanner Krolle Attaché - Royal Gift purchased at Harrods by English Friend} | previous post about the beautiful Tanner Krolle Attaché Pieter got gifted from Peter Stanley-Evans...
MARIETTE'S BACK TO BASICS © 2009. All rights reserved - Text and images may not be copied for distribution or sale.

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