Today is wet, windy and fairly miserable all day. But we don’t let a little thing like weather put us off and Patrick and I head off into the garden. Patrick concentrates on constructing a variety of different frameworks to support the Blackberries and Tayberries awaiting planting. He also has to make something for the Raspberries and the remaining stepover Apples. Some of this involves a step ladder which he approaches with surprising fearlessness despite the state of his leg and how it got that way! His ‘ladder antics’ send me into panic mode, and I shout at him and rush to hold the ladder steady.
When Aideen has finished practising and Meave has returned from her night out, they both come out to join the fun! They’ve decided to start clearing the most distant derelict shed/concrete base/eyesore in the orchard – a noble ambition. Patrick and I regard the area, and try to remember how many times we’ve cleared it in the past… one really has to admire the persistence of brambles! Anyway, maybe this will be the last time it will need clearing and it will give a temporary home to our log pile.
I carry on with pruning and cutting back my fruit tree border, by the end of the day it is three quarters done, not bad considering the number of roses that required pruning.
I make a decision about my injured stepover pear and cut back the arms to the points where they have broken, to a bud pointing in what I hope is the right direction. We will wait and see the results.
On entering the polytunnel I notice I have both of my tabby cats in the propagator and my seedling onions look a bit bent!
I go out into the vegetable garden to dig up dinner, I bring in twelve leeks, a red cabbage, and the biggest swede I’ve ever grown. First of all, I make some soup with three of the leeks, the remains of an enormous butternut squash, potatoes, celery and onion. Then I make a large chicken, leek and mushroom pie that we will have for dinner (very late!) with mashed swede and my favourite, braised red cabbage with apple. This will be delicious but the amount of cut off leaves, roots, peelings, stalks etc. fill my large compost bucket and the garden trug to overflowing and I have to sweep up mud several times. This is probably why some people prefer shop brought veg, it is much cleaner!