A kilo of raspberries a day

Sunday raspberriesNow that’s a good way to start one’s day. The bushes have responded well to that sluicing of water I gave them this past week. Groaning with berries.

I am mostly freezing them for the next batch of raspberry cordial. But plenty more for munching.

Actually the day started with a trip to town with my neighbour Danielle who is incapacitated with a broken arm. I to the boulangerie to get bread and treats, Danielle to the market to get strawberries for her 93 year old mother.   She is of a venerable age, but has voluble needs. And luckily a craving for fresh strawberries could be satisfied with one small trip to town.

My other main garden task was to start the week of strimming one evening early. It is promising to be 32C every day this week, so the only hope I have is to start early and finish late. And probably lie prone on the floor at lunch trying to recover from the exertions.

Peacock orchids outBut before I regale you with pics of half strimmed terraces. And believe me, they are of a monochrome straw yellow right now. Here is the first peacock orchid emerging from the rose planter. Each planter has a few out and they will no doubt delight for the next month at least.

I want to get the lower terraces sorted before the end of the month. But first off was the terrace above the orchard. I have neglected it terribly this summer. It is one of those long sloping terraces that just seems to ooze wildflowers, tangle of brambles and mess. So starting around 7pm I went into the lower slopes and easily removed the dead vegetation. The steeper slopes are much trickier. Especially when you are wielding a heavy electrical instrument. So that is going to have to wake for tomorrow’s early attack.Orchard half strimmed

One of the treats of the dusk strimming was to find that the Falstaff apples are ripe. And what juicy beauties they are. So crunchy. And such a nice break from the din of the strimmer and toil among the brambles.

I lay prone on the grass (well, crisp grass-like area) and ate it through, relishing the quiet. All except for the incessant noise of the male chaffinch. Our summer’s chorus. What a glorious place.

Falstaff appleAnd then I realised too that I have neglected to record the progress of Nicolas’ latest landscaping progress.

This is the linking wall between the end of the calabert (open Ardeche barn) and the apple tree in the middle of the terrace and the top of the steps that lead down to the pool. It would have been of stone if any of us had the energy, the patience, the funds or the will power. But I for one couldn’t bear the site of the cement mixer cluttering up the now clear calabert for another winter.

Chestnut wall in progressSo a woven little wall of chestnut saplings it was to be. Luckily chestnut saplings is something we have in abundance. So with the aid of iron reinforcing rods, here is the wall.

Can’t quite work out where it is in relation to the rest of the garden? Try this angle.

Sorry the view is so parched and yellow. That green lawn will come back, we hope. And tomorrow I shall get on with more strimming and less gazing at someone else’s garden work.chestnut wall in progress 1