Monday, 31 August 2009
As I garden I think. I think about writing. As I write I think about gardening. Can anything be better?
Wednesday, 26 August 2009
There is still a tonne to clear before digging can commence, but yesterday Dad cleared some more and just in the space of an hour it looks different again. Sam has now been down to have a look at all the 'Ouch!' being cleared away. He enjoyed visiting our friends' allotment in Bristol so much he has been asking to go back. I asked him what he thought about us growing vegetables and fruit in the garden and he is very excited about it- especially the picking raspberries and strawberries part.
The subject of compost is a huge one and the more I look into it the more interested in it I become. I am liable to go off on tangents and get caught up in the complexity of one particular area, and I cannot afford to do that at the moment. My time and focus is limited and already spread thinly enough as it is. But it is something I will come back to.
So I will add that thought to the heap of subject matter currently occupying my brain, let it rot down a bit, and then see what happens when I get writing again.
Thursday, 20 August 2009
Packed with flowers, squash, courgettes, cucumber, a brassica and leeks in a pot to plant out, rocket-tape, sunflower and salad seeds. Plus a book on low-cost living. My own personal starter kit.
I stuffed the squash with butterbeans, mushrooms, sage, oregano, chili, capers and tomatoes, and baked it in the oven. It was delicious. Thanks Tania! Thanks also to all those people who have offered advice and support. It is much appreciated
I also bought a book on composting: The Garden Organic Guide to Making Compost. It looks very practical and easy to read and lots of photos! I have used a compost bin before and know a bit but with clearing such a large space and with growing vegetables I thought I would try and do some research so I get it right and maximise my compost-making opportunities.
Yesterday I re-discovered two of the paths, one of which leads to the compost bin which hasn't been used since Mum died. So I can't wait to open the lid and see what's in there. And, more importantly to start using it again.
Today Dad helped me bundle up the first lot of brambles to take to the recycling centre. I have nowhere to put them for compost until I have cleared some more space but I hope to have that problem resolved by the end of next week.
Dad also removed the wheelbarrow which had become wrapped in brambles, honeysuckle and jasmine that had crept off the archway. A large black toad had been living there. I am sure he will find somewhere else to live in the garden but I saw him later this afternoon, back where the wheelbarrow had been.
I also found the coldframe, dilapidated and rotten but probably salvageable which was covered in brambles and roses. I moved it there last year, with the help of my best friend, away from the patio where it had lived when my Mum used it for propogating plants. I was amazed at how fast it had disappeared under a network of fearsome rose and bramble thorns, flowers and blackberries. Next to it appeared another wheelbarrow after more hacking and harvesting of berries. I moved round to the other side of the coldframe and carried on clearing and cutting until I reached the other corner of the garden- opposite the compost bin. Finally I found the other lost path and the memorial of our first family cat, Pepper, who is buried there.
I am surprised at how much I have uncovered in about six hours work, not to mention the huge haul of delicious blackberries, many of which lay trampled underfoot, giving off a slight candyfloss smell as the afternoon wore on.
I am nurturing a little scrumper.