Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Of mice and men (and yet more bloody couch grass)

Plan: Spend three half days over glorious bank holiday weekend on allotment, healthy fresh air yada yada, get loads done, feel virtuous if sunburnt.

Outcome: Spent vast amounts of money killing off liver, spent every morning in bed waiting to feel better, spent all of three hours on plot doing useful virtuous things. Am crap.

Did however get round to buying tarpaulin (still in plastic, sitting inside shed without a roof). Weeded amazing shady bed which I may as well call my couch grass bed as that's all that's growing in it. Thought about weeding leeks. Couldn't be arsed. Pinched hoe from next door's shed - it had actual cobwebs on it, so I reckoned I was safe, though I'll return it when I eventually get tools of my own - which are waiting for me in a friend's shed (his sister gardened, went off to New Zealand, left tools) only of course I haven't got round to going to fetch them let alone hoik them up to the plot. (hoik is an excellent word and my new favourite word of the week).

Also trapped a 16-year-old assistant in Homebase to measure out weed suppressant fabric, that was great fun ("Twelve metres? Are you sure?" "Actually I want at least 18 but I'm not sure if it'll fit in a rucksack. How much fits in a rucksack?"). Got to plot. Raked over a third of it (basically I'm combing the couch grass) and scattered green manure seeds, phacelia, rye grass and red clover, and raked part of it over again. I don't know if it'll grow, and I don't know if it'll beat the couch grass or just lie down defeated as I am tempted to do.

Made interesting L shape with weed suppressant fabric (twelve metres is not a lot on an allotment, and has the added bonus of making all the land that you haven't covered look twice as huge and unmanageable). Weighted down with bricks and a pallet I'd fished out of next door's compost bin. Tried manfully (womanfully?) not to squeal like a girl every time I found a slug. Where has this squeamishness come from? Will I start liking pink and take hours to get ready? That's what eejit is for.

Avoided digging beds. Avoided clearing brambles (did I mention I found an entire apple tree in there?). I must have done something else. No sign of spinach, I think I weeded it, or spuds. Spinach seedlings on windowsill going great guns, perhaps I'll dig over the theoretically spinachy bit of the amazing shady weedy bed and start again? I'll have lost three weeks, but I've got the windowsill ones. I could even do a whole bed and sow both varieties I've got and try that successional sowing stuff. Leeks are leeking. They don't appear to be dead, but neither do they appear to be particularly alive. There aren't any tests that I know of, so I'll just ignore them and let them grow when I'm not looking, if that's the way they want to play it.

Still no sign of brassicas, which is probably a good thing, as apparently they like firm ground, and I haven't got any. I've got couch grass, and rotavated soil, and that's pretty much it.

Came into work today and checked on A4A. First post I read moaned about weed suppressant fabrics from garden centres being crap. Arse.

Should go up to plot tonight in glorious sunshine and fix shed. Want to sit at home nursing hangover and eating pie.


Blogger MutantHobbit said...

Did you manage to get a pair of green regal wellies over the bank holiday weekend?

9:53 am  
Blogger Bupster said...

Still no regal wellies. Very disappointed. I could pick them up in homebase, but it doesn't seem the same; less of the Queen Mother and a bit too Fergie, you know?

Will keep hunting...

5:08 pm  

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