At long last. It has stopped raining. Gusty wind from the east, temperatures no better than 5 Celsius, but I had to get out to the allotment to check things hadnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t blown away during the bad weather. Everything was fine. Not even waterlogged. But naturally not a lot in the place where I wanted it Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the big plastic wheelie bin where I think I will need to store an awful lot of water this year (we are still in drought). I may have to rig up some sort of water catchment system with a tarpaulin to get more falling into it. Perhaps rigging up something around the compost bins. But rather than thoughts of engineering, I was more concerned with planting. In went the garlic in two rows, all rather neat and sorted. And I spent the rest of the day weeding the new potato bed. You can get into quite a good rhythm with the work: fork large amounts along a row to lift the roots, down onto a big of old plastic to protect the knees from the wet, then work your way along the row pulling the weeds, hoiking out the worst of the grass, throwing the slugs to the awaiting robins, and generally turning the soil over as you go. I unearthed an interesting clump of bulbs from the previous owners. Not sure what they are (tulips perhaps) so I will leave them and see. Naturally they are in the middle of where the path will be.
CouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t resist buying a few more bags of spent mushroom compost from the little shop, and a bag of rather interesting looking shallots. They will have to wait until I get back. Met another neighbour, an Italian named Rino (I think). He explained that he didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t speak English, but then proceeded to tell me a long complicated story about my shed (itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a theme around here) and the previous owners. Goodness only knows what it all meant, but he did suggest that the onion sets should not go in before March. That much I gleaned. Ah well, hopefully mine will survive. Off to Australia for two weeks. The onions and garlic will have to fend for themselves.