Monday, January 15, 2007

This weekend was quite a hectic one: I had a housewarming party so all of Saturday was taken up with making mini cheesecakes, driving frantically through the Saturday shopping traffic jams to buy a bag-in-box of wine and sewing Robinson Crusoe costumes about half an hour before guests were due to arrive. So gardening came as a low priority. However Sunday turned out to be dry and mild so the call of the shovel worked its magic.
When I got to the allotment I found that the previous occupant had been true to his word and had ripped up all his leeks, leaving me with a huge pile of leek trimmings bang in the middle of the plot. This was not where I had planned to make my compost so I dragged the pile down the bottom of the plot. Then started digging again, pulling out the ugliest weeds and turning over the soil.
The plot looks bigger than ever and I can't help but feel a little discouraged. I saw some new neighbours in the plots all around mine, they are quite a friendly lot. The fellow next door kindly informed me "Oh you'll have about three years before you stop getting invaded by weeds: if I were you I would bung a lot of weedkiller over that lot, it will soon rinse off." I was rather horrfied by this and said "er yes, well, I don't really want to use any chemicals so I suppose I am just stuck with digging", at which he looked at me like I must be the sort of person who thinks sticking hot needles under her fingernails is a fun way to spend the long winter evenings and toddled off back to his cucumber frame. Of course his solution did seem the most practical one, but this of course is completely against the ethos I had in mind when doing the garden, so I will just have to lump it and get hoeing. I dug up the bits where the Small Ones wish to garden (so they tell me), found some mint growing wild, which I tried to rip up because I don't want that taking over the plot. Smallest One accompanied me with her bike and she made friends with Mr and Mrs Napalm next door, who has a sweet dog, a sort of pointer that obligingly let herself be taken for a walk by Smallest One. She watched them transplant soem of their things, I hope she just stood out of the way of the DTT.
I pulled out some tomato stakes that were practically taking root lying down in the grass, and put them against the shed to dry. The shed has been emptied so now I can leave the tools there, which will be much more practical. I can't wait to actually be able to plant some things! A friend gave me a sweet present on Saturday, a planting tool (that pointy thing you use to plant seeds) and some seeds, lettuse, radishes, beets to get me going off to a flying start.
My next problem is going to be how to get together all the things I will need, for almost no pennies, like black plastic, straw, pine bark for the herb garden, some wire fencing for the peas. I will need to cut the plot up into several bits, make some pathways, put up some bords to raise the beds a bit I think that will make it look more user-friendly or least not such an impossible challenge.

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