Sunday, 20 March 2011

Dig, dig, dig !!!

Lovely weekend for pottering around the lottie. Almost caught the sun on Saturday.

I feel like I've dug half of England, but blatently didn't as there is tonnes more digging to still be done on the plot - its very nearly killed me !

I've dug up 4 wheelbarrows full of bindweed - there was a surprising amount in the old strawberry beds. I wonder sometimes if by digging over my beds whether I'm just making it easier for it to shoot across the plot. I've also taken out my three dead artichokes - they were riddled with bindweed too. When I get around to planting out the replacements, I'll have to give some thought as to where they will go.

A few years ago I bought one of those mini-greenhouses and promptly forgot all about it. In an attempt to keep my seeds safe I suggested to OH that we put it into the attic. OH wouldn't even entertain the thought tho ... and sure enough my seeds came a cropper that very night .. anyone want a very bad kitten ? She has walked through my tomatoes & peppers and mixed them all up and also mixed up all of the cucumber labels grrrrrrrrrrrr. No idea what I'll get now - if anything.

Anyway, I get distracted where was I - oh yes the MINI-greenhouse. So plan b is to erect it inside the glass greenhouse. Off I trot on Saturday and unwrap the box ... it quickly becomes aparent it isn't a mini-greenhouse it's a bloody walk-in one (no wonder OH was not very happy LOL). I've never been much good with measurements :)

So plan c !! Erect it and put it outside - after several attempts to put dratted thing together, Linda from next door takes pity on me and comes to direct .. hurrah ! shortly after we have it up and the cover on. It is quite fragile - the joints are made from plastic and the first incident happened just as we'd finished when Linda stumbled and almost fell through the liner, bending a strut and snapping a joint. It was a very funny moment and should be easily fixed with some black tape.

It surived the night, but didn't look right where it was so I decided to move it in front of the glass greenhouse. Of course that involved more digging (of course !!) Another 99 hours later and the second incident happened. The wind caught it and blew it over snapping most of the other joints and even ripping the cover a little. Darn it. Need a lot of flipping tape now. It is now secured with 4 guy ropes and several bricks. Hope it is still there when I go up next !! Can't really complain, it only cost £20 !

Before:
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After:
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My potatoes have been chitting on the back seat of my car - the only safe place with that dratted kitten about. As I need my back seats back, I decided to plant them today. Of course I had to finish digging the beds first (of course !!) The new double bed that I've made in front of the greenhouse was big enough to take 35 seed potatoes: 15 Maris Piper, 15 Vivaldi & 5 Roosters.

Having failed yet again in my efforts to get any manure delivered I had a quick google and discovered it was possible to use chicken manure ... hurrah. Now everything I've read says to leave your soil for one week before planting after treating with chicken pellets, but I'm very very busy at the moment, so it all had to happen today - I was careful to ensure the seed potatoes didn't come into contact with the pellets.

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I know some of you will be thinking that it's perhaps a bit early for some of them, but I'll only have time for fleeting visits over the next couple of weeks. My main concern is whether planting them opposite the greenhouse is a good idea as I've had blight in previous seasons. Oh well, only time will tell. I meant to put some comfrey leaves in with them, but forgot ... doh !

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Here's the view from the other end - it's on my hit list for digging ... yippee !

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Last job of the day was to sow some more seeds:

- Ghost pumpkin
- Sunshine squash
- Marina di Chioggia squash
- Winter festival squash

First crop of the year - crumble or rhubarb sponges ?

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I'm feeling quite pleased with myself, but am very very tired now. Next job is to dig over the right hand slim beds which are for the strawberries. I'll save that for another day !

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