Today is a day for dealing with ‘big beasts’. As I have now planted the banana trees, I decide I should also plant the remaining eight cannas. These remaining cannas are all big, I left them deliberately to be planted at the back of the central borders because they should be big enough to make an impact. However, eight big cannas need eight big holes, so off I go with my golden spade. I acquired this special spade for a birthday present a couple of years ago. It is a Japanese make and the blade finishes with a point. It is the best spade I’ve ever used and I try to keep it out of the way of everyone else to avoid it being stolen! When I look at the borders, it is clear that I will have more space to fill on one side than the other. So I dig 6 holes on one side and three in the opposite bed…yes I did accidentally dig an extra hole which was annoying! Unfortunately, these planting holes are in the vicinity of the pampas grasses with their razor toothed fronds and now my hands, arms and legs are now covered in small scratches and rashes.
I then decided to deal with the verbena hastata that has taken over the fruit cage border opposite the field border. I originally planted this verbena in the field border mistakenly assuming it was verbena bonariensis, but this variety is much more leaf and much less flower. It seems to have left the field border, crossed the path and overrun the fruit cage border. The plants are massive, almost as tall as me, swamping the ‘step over’ apples and hiding the sweetpeas. Drastic action and the giant green barrow are required. I completely dig out any verbena at the front of the border and severely cut back the rest. When I’m finished, the big green barrow is overflowing, also I’m even more scratched because this verbena, like its cousin bonariensis, has ‘sand paper like’ leaves and stems almost as bad as pampas grass.
A nice surprise to day was discovering ripe black and redcurrants. The blackcurrants were really big and quite palatable straight from the bush, there were also quite a few mulberries on the tree which are sweet if a little musty tasting.
I popped in to see the mushrooms and saw a couple that although still tiny, did look like proper mushrooms!
When we had our tea break in the orchard we could hear quite loud bangs coming from the nut trees. It is that time of year again…the nuts (cobnuts) are milky white, not ripe enough for humans, but delicious for squirrels! Our giant squirrels gorge themselves on the nuts, taking a few bites and then hurling them out of the trees! The bangs were them hitting the roof of the caravan, which on inspection, was covered in nuts!
I finish the day dead heading sweet peas…I do love sweetpeas but to describe them as ‘high maintenance’ is an understatement!