Dry days and sunshine

While I don’t want to put a hex on, it’s really getting dry up at the plot. Mine’s a complete suntrap and I’m already carting watering cans about. I am very pleased the shed gives some shade, or I’d be burnt to a cinder.

I’ve mostly been digging blackthorn out at the plot, and prepping boards for the raised beds. And learning important lessons about how to make raised beds – or how not to. Like don’t use a camping mallet to bash the posts in because that will take hours and the head will fly off with no warning! And put the posts in first, then nail the boards to them, because the boards split if you do it the other way around! So my first one is wonky, but it will last a couple of years I hope.

Progress is very slow. I am sifting the clay/soil for roots to get rid of as much blackthorn and couch as possible, and then I mix the crumbled sifted mix with fresh manure and straw, or rotted manure, depending on what’s going in there. So my photos this week are a bit dull. As pressure builds to get seedlings out I bet I’ll get sloppier though!

At home I’ve had a bit of a disaster. The labels on some of my seedlings have soaked off and I don’t know what they are…So mystery squash and tomatoes this year again!

quince blossomI gave in to temptation at the garden centre and came home with a 2-year old Vranja quince – it’s so beautiful and about to come into flower. I am hoping I can train it into an open fan as the branches still seem very supple. All I need to do is decide where to put it… My little car is really coming into its own – there’s no way I could have got it back without the roof coming down…

All the soft fruit is in flower – apart from one gooseberry which is determined to stay a twig. The nice people at Blackmoor’s have said they will send me another. Fingers crossed for a bumper year! Broad beans are also starting to flower, and it looks like the ants are getting ready to farm aphids – they are zooming up and down the plants. Potatoes aren’t up yet though.

This week has been my first week of working part-time – I’m down to 4 days per week. I’m not unhappy about it – there are a lot of people worse off than me, and I’ll be able to use the time at the plot to get it into shape.
So next Friday I’m off to Brogdale with Mum to look at trained fruit trees.

Tonight’s dinner features my entire crop of PSB – just enough for 2. With chard from the plot and roast lamb and potatoes (not grown by me!). And plot-grown rhubarb crumble for afters. Delicious!

Categories: Diary 2013

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