Updated: Feb 28, 2019
I am very excited but slightly bemused to be starting a blog... which will not surprise those who already know me as I don't even own a mobile phone. The blog will be written out long hand and given to a daughter to post!
Today has been fantastic, the weather is unbelievably glorious and warm, t-shirts in February! We've achieved a lot today because we have had lots of help, thank you, Aideen, James and Meave. Our curious collection of recycled containers in the fruit cage (except the bath) are now full of earth and compost, and some of the supports for the step over apples
and pears are in place. We have utilised five old metal water tanks of varying sizes to form an arrangement of raised beds for the strawberries - I'm hoping this might deter slugs and woodlice from eating them. We also have three round plastic modern water tanks situated under the three high points of the cage which will act giant flower pots for a miniature mulberry tree, a dwarf cherry and walnut tree. Finally, I am using an old cast iron bath, that has been lurking in the garden since we moved in 20 years ago, to house three blueberry bushes. This should give me the opportunity to make their compost more acidic, which should make them perform better - this idea has come from the great Bob Flowerdew (my hero). Grandad's comment on all of this is, "The fruit cage resembles a derelict plumbers merchant's yard!" I think it's going to be great! I spent all morning planting about fifty donated Hellebores (thank you Violetta) around the bee area, who have woken up and are very busy. The Hellebores had overrun a friend’s garden and she had asked me to dig some of them up for her yesterday.
The younger family members managed to get a bonfire going so we could dispose of a massive heap of branches that we have cut from our rampant front field hedge. We then finished the day clearing the piles of branches stacked behind the kitchen garden fence, which have been there since the Summer. Meave, Aideen and James gathered them up behind the fence, not easy in fading light and trying not to fall down the badger holes! They passed them over the wall to Patrick on the viewing platform who then threw them down to me to gather up and take down to the bonfire. We didn't come in until it was completely dark, and we were greeted by the receipt of the fantastic Optima article written by Jill Glenn - thank you so much Jill! We are now all tired and aching but very happy.