Ah, the list is a cruel task master. I set myself the job of getting the top vegetable garden completely finished today. And I almost did. But as I was standing in a mild snow storm in the late afternoon with an aching back and a teensy bit more to go, I thought it was madness.
Why on earth didn’t I just stop? Because the list was pushing me along. That is the curse of having a very big garden and the end of winter in sight.
I have to get everything weeded before the weeds start off in the new season. It’s a bit like getting your 2011 desk tidied ready for 2012.
I am of course delighted with the results. I need to do a final digging over of the top right part – that’s where the cabbage are probably going to go – and the soil is a bit thin in places and I need to haul soil more evenly over the area. But I could barely lift my garden fork by the end, so it’s going to be first off tomorrow.
If it stops snowing.
And it was the snow flurries first thing (plus some amazingly windy weather) that sent me not to the vegetable bed, but into the cosy confines of the potting shed.
It is currently Artur-less. He didn’t stalk down this morning, but he might have been lurking near a warm fire rather than get buffeted about by snow and wind.
I pricked out more lettuce and more cabbage seedlings into my pots. And I placed them on the top shelf where Artur usually snoozes. No cat, the plants get the top spot instead.
And then after lunch I decided that there really was no more reason to put off the task. Oh, I did pot on some of the cuttings of valerian and teucrum. But most of those cuttings from autumn are not doing much. I did grab a few more of the lavender and cistus prunings to propagate. I’m nervous about how little of the huge number of shrubs I planted last year are looking good after this incredibly cold winter. There is a lot of scorching on my calabert plants. But I can’t look yet and decide. I have to be patient and see what is just scorched and what is dead.
I’m thrilled so many of the lavenders look postively untouched by the blast. But all the santolinas are brown. Eek.
So, instead of fretting about what I can’t fix, I dug up a row of parsnips instead. These have been incredibly successful this past year. And they still taste wonderfully sweet. We roasted them last night and I threaten to serve them for many meals to come. I have kilos of them left.
No more cabbage of course. They didn’t survive the cold; so I was able to clear them quickly and get the area hoed and tidied for the next crops.
And I was able to finally sort out the supports for the raspberries and asparagus before they get out of control. I happen to have a huge ball of string which we bought for the boundary work up in the forest. One thousand metres of very pink special string. So the top vegetable bed is unfashionably girlie in many ways.
Artur did pop by for a brief visit. He must think I do all this hoeing and raking just to give him a large variety of soft places to roll in. His coat looks dreadful and he’s scrawny. I suspect worms. And must have a word with our neighbours. La teigne I think it’s called. The vocab you learn on a farm. But I was relieved to have even a brief visit. But then once the snow flurries pattered down, the cat disappeared and I should have as well.