Had a visit from Mr and MrsC snr during the week, when I mentioned the bit of extra land to MrC snr, he was off on a mission….. I was going to leave it because of the asbestos outbuildings, but armed with a pair of loppers he was off exploring. When they get an idea in their head, there’s no stopping a MrC of any generation…
After much snipping of brambles he managed to get access to the area, and it’s a bit of an odd affair, the shed certainly looks to be on land that belongs to us, but the entrance is in the neighbours garden. I’m not going to quibble with the neighbours about a garden shed, land is something we’re not short of! Plus it means we don’t have to deal with it. The bit behind the outbuildings looks like a good spot for composting and storing stuff, now that we’ve uncovered it.
MrsC carried on valiantly with the weeding out the front, it’s starting to look really good. I’m going to have to plant an awful lot of seeds to fill out all the space she’s cleared.
Last week my seed tin contained about 4 packets of seeds that I’d got free with gardening magazines that I can’t resist picking up when we’re in the supermarket. This week, MrC decided to go mental on the internet choosing flower seeds (The flowers are the silver packets, I’m all about veggies rather than flowers), I picked up half a dozen packets of vegetable seeds in the garden centre and then there were 10 free packets in this months Kitchen Garden magazine. It’s a little more stocked up now!
I was able to join the Caseys outside for an hour and spent some time shovelling out the firepits in the meadow to dump on the waterlogged bog that the path down to the meadow has become. Hard work this, but it does cut down on the squelch factor. I also completed the clearance of the stuff at the front of the house that I started last week.
MrC snr has planted 3 rows of onion sets in the veggie garden, 2 rows of white and 1 row of red onions. Because my knee has been out of action ALL the work on the veggie garden has been done by Mr and Mrs C snr, and they’ve done an incredible job, it’s really starting to look good!
Time to turn my eye to the greenhouse for the weekend, difficult to propagate that many seeds without a functioning greenhouse. Honestly, I’d been putting this off, there were CURTAINS of spiderwebs in there that needed clearing. There were years and years and years worth of junk to clear out, and we found that the potting areas are mostly made of asbestos (it’s odd, the grounds are riddled with the damn stuff, but there is none in the house itself). Mr and Mrs C snr came around with their trailer and took a couple of loads of junk to the tip for us, mostly stuff from the greenhouse, but also a lot of wire and metal that’s been uncovered as we clear the undergrowth. Result! The greenhouse is now clear of junk and spiders webs. There were hundreds of pots and propagators in there that I gave a good wash with mixture of fairy and thin bleach to kill off any moulds or plant diseases that may have lingered. These will come in very handy 🙂 I would really like to give the windows a clean, but I have a feeling they might fall out if I do so. At some point they’re going to need replacing, but for now it’ll do nicely. That was the dirtiest job I’ve undertaken so far, 4 baths later I still feel covered in a patina of spiderwebs and general flith.
Pots are clean, me not so much…
MrC meanwhile decided to tackle the bramble patch at the front of the house that was completely strangling a conifer tree. Val had made inroads into this earlier in the year, but the brambles were killing the tree, so it was time for them to go. MrsC snr ferried loads of bramble through the mud down to the meadow while MrC snr snipped chicken wire off the rotting frames in the veggie garden, we can burn the frames but not while they still have the wire attached. He’s also repurposed some of the less rotten ones to make a protection for the broadbeans when we sow them.
MrC also resited a little hazelnut tree that was growing a bit close to the house, that’s now at the edge of the property where it can grow as much as it likes.
Sunday was a little more gentle (for me at least). I finished off cleaning the remaining pots and stuff in the greenhouse. Added some manure and compost to one of the beds and gave it a digging over, this was very light work as the soil was bone dry and light, a good introduction to digging for my knee!
Then, time to do some planting, yay!
I put a row of rocket and radishes in the greenhouse bed and then planted up a load of seeds in seed trays. Sweetpeas, lisianthus, snapdragons, cabbage, cauliflower and parsley all planted and I’ll be in the greenhouse everyday staring at them for the faintest sign of germination, which I think will be the occasion we’ve been waiting for to open Anna’s champagne!
MrC meanwhile was still wrestling with the bramble patch, he’s definitely winning although it’s putting up a struggle, poor love has scratches all along his wrists. These are some of biggest brambles we’ve seen yet. MrC had to go and buy a very long pole with a pair of snippers on the end to try to get them. It seems to be working, it’s nearly cleared.
(earlier in the year)
Back to work on Monday, but it’s still going to be an exciting day, the asbestos removal guys are coming to take away all the asbestos that’s littering the outside (not the outbuildings, that’s going to be a large, expensive job. They’re not really doing any harm, we just don’t go near them.), this will be a real step forward, the asbestos has been really getting in the way, I’m excited to see it go. We also have an inspector coming to assess the energy rating of the property and to see if we can qualify for a grant to have the place insulated.
Trying to put together a list of jobs for next week, it’s very easy to get distracted (for me at least, oh look something shiny!!).
Spray the comfrey patch in the summer house/entertaining garden
Spray the nettles near the orchard
Get back to clearing the brambles on the walnut trees
Dig over the rest of the greenhouse beds once the asbestos has been removed
HAVE A FIRE!!
Dismantle the propagating house (once the asbestos panels on the bottom have been removed)
Clear all the bamboo that is next to the asbestos fence (once the asbestos has been removed)
Do a ragwort sweep of the meadow
Choose a site for an asparagus bed, clear, dig and manure (This might turn into a job for next year, as an asparagus bed needs a lot of preparation and they should be planted out March/April)
Wonder how much of this we’ll get done….