Spring Garden
0 comment Tuesday, October 14, 2014 |
Another lovely day after a bit of cloud this late morning - body says it's 11, clock says it's lunch! Still I managed to get outside for a bit to note progress and to do some potting on of seedlings.
Out of the tom and chili seeds I planted I had low germination rates which I'm not happy about :/ I still have time to start more seeds, and I may do, but I think the potting medium was just way too heavy for such delicate seeds. I planted six seeds, only got two. None of the peppers had a chance and two out of three squash seeds rotted right in the trays. This is all I have to show for it, and considering everything was so up-in-the-air I didn't bother to plant any backup. Will be doing that in the coming week as it's still somewhat early.
One thing that is doing VERY well, thank you is the sage! Growing like mad and starting to season some roasting and soups. The chives which are just to the far lower left even survived the winter and will lend a hand in flavouring whatever I can put my mind to this year. I've a pot of basil which is currently on the windowsill which will also go inside, but not in this bed - it didn't do well in here as I think the soil is just too heavy. The grow houses however might suit it well and considering I've not got anywhere near as many toms and peppers this year, that should suit it nicely.
The raised bed combination of netting, cut twigs and sticks from the dog roses (very prickly!) cat repellent and slug pellets seems to be doing the job in keeping the bed relatively pest-free. As a result I have a bit more hope when it comes to my seedlings this year and I have managed to start the lettuce, peas and broad beans. I always plant the beans too deep however and I think I'll need to perform some excavation or plant some more to stagger things out a bit. Even so, the lettuce itself is growing well with no sign of slug damage at all. And that's not due to a complete lack of slugs - they've been going great guns all over my strawberry plants lately so I've placed another order of the pellets. They're very effective and don't leave anything in the ground that shouldn't be there but for a bit of iron, so happy to use the stuff - also the colour is very noticeable to child knows exactly where the pellets are, what they are, and not to put them in his mouth; vital when gardening with a Wump!
I have twice been thwarted by emergencies or hospital visits to get sand for my son's sandbox, but I refuse to accept defeat! Granted I'm somewhat glad I hadn't done it yet as with all the wolf spiders doing their thing outside I don't think he'd go anywhere near the fence line right now and I suspect it's why he's refusing to go out to his bit of the garden at all right now. I don't blame him, the grass is literally TEEMING with the wee buggers. This year I am well armed with strong erythromiacin (sp) in case I get bitten again as the cellulitis was NOT fun last year and if I can self-treat, more the better. In any event, once the grass gets cut a bit the spiders will flee to wilder pastures and then I can get the sandbox filled.
Today marks the first day I want to plant seeds outside directly into the bed, and I'm rather chuffed to do that! First on the list is some early carrots - child's favourites, these grow well in heavy soil and they "bunch" so I don't have to be religious about spacing. Fine by me! Another sowing of peas today as well, and maybe one more row of broad beans. I have to watch the legume intake sadly but I am still a great lover of falafel and growing my own broad beans for this is just a given, really. Child has been asking about growing runner beans (!!!) and so I'm all too pleased to help give him a designated runner bean space and we'll tie up some trestles for them as they grow as well. The holly bush which the wonderful volunteers tried to get out of the raised bed is now back - and I'm going to take that as a sign and leave it jolly well where it is! It's in the far corner against the wall so I shan't be unhappy with it. The tayberry has been planted in the raised bed as well for the time being though I don't think that will be its permanent placement - ideally I'd put it one of my other largeish pots but I'm honestly starting to run out of patio space to put potted plants in at the moment.
The trees and berry shrubs are all getting on with producing flowers, so hurrah there! I'm actually rather surprised when it comes to the minarettes, to be truthful - I didn't expect a single bud this year as they're so new but I'm thrilled to note that both the pear and apple minarette have some delicate pink-tinged bud clusters forming. Whoo! Again, I shan't hope for fruit this soon but it's still a good sign and I'm pleased! The cherry tree is also showing that it is very happily established where it is and I'm already seeing I'm going to have to do a tonne of pruning later in the year to encourage it not to get out of hand - robust growth indeed! The mulberry, as mulberries do, is taking its sweet time doing anything in particular - the buds are still tiny, but they're there. It definitely doesn't seem to appreciate being rushed so I leave it as it is and let it carry on.
With all this lovely weather the grass has been growing pretty well. Unfortunately, so have the weeds. So, with a qualm I have placed the order for the weedicide to try and kill out all the stuff which is encroaching from next door; it's a losing battle trying to fight all of it, so I'm going to nuke it instead. I don't like doing it but I know for a fact I can't spent all my rather limited energy hacking away at all the weeds creeping into our space. It's a bit gutting and I'm trying to figure out which bit of the dandelion "crops" I can leave alone so I can harvest - probably down in the patio bit which I'm sure looks very unsightly to people who don't understand why I have them there, but nevermind!
Energy indeed is something I've really had to be mindful of. Not pushing myself too far has become vital - more vital than before, as those little twinges in the chest remind me. So, when it comes to mowing the garden, I now have to take it in chunks. Every day I will be mowing a little bit rather than try and tackle it all at once. I'll be weeding the beds, planting the seeds, having the sprog help water (his favourite bit!). Carrying on the "haiku gardening" in small increments till I'm healthy enough to increase it a bit.
So onward spring, and with enjoyment, in bits and starts, and a fair bit of sunblock. I'm off out into the garden again!

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