Plunge in

Well there is just no putting it off. I need to get these pictures onto the site, heading off to Australia and I am trailing notes and images. The tags on these pictures say the 12th. Was that the 12th December? It must have been. So here come three random shots of more snowfalls. The olive trees seem to have survived the winter. And it has been a long winter here. Still frosts almost every night and getting to minus eight once earlier this month.

The conifers took a beating – particularly up in the forest. The weight of the snow caused so many branches to snap that we spent the first day of our new year trip just cutting and moving fallen trees and debris.

Poor trees. And naturally they all came too late for me to turn them into Christmas tree branches for the house. Instead they were heaved onto the stacks of dying and drying branches in the forest. And in just two years from now they are going to make spiffing kindling.

The other fun and games revolved around the spring. The water in the taps in the house had a – how shall we say it? – stale odour. And climbing up to the forest and peering into the underground spring we found out why. All that flooding rain in October had entirely silted up the supply. It’s a wierd picture, but somewhere in there is a bubbling spring. Luckily it was a sunny day – even though only about six degrees. Digging and scraping and bailing like mad for two hours produced a result.

We now have flowing water again and it tastes very sweet. Too much water of course. We really must get on with creating new ponds for the top vegetable plot. This overflowing winter water really ought to go somewhere more useful.

No rest for the virtuous mind you, next it was on with more soil preparation in the lower vegetable bed: weed free. Such bliss. And note that you can actually spot where the veg are growing now that the snow has melted. I need to order more enviromesh to cover the cloches in spring. Lurking under the far right cloche are eighty little mache (salad) plants. Poor things are frozen in their soil and not putting on any growth. But who knows? Come March they may bulk out and provide food when we are truly sick and tired of that blasted kale.