i put in a solid amount of work today on the garden. Only 4 hours but it felt like much much longer. i think mostly because most of it was quite hard work. I dug over the end of bed 3 that has the blackcurrant and redcurrant bushes in. It was infested with some kind of fairly deep rooted weed, due to my neglect of last year, so that entire bed needed going over on my hands and knees, pulling out these horrid weeds. i then moved 2 of the bushes, so that the bushes are further apart and have more room to grow, then put some compost in around them, and moved the strawberry plants in the dug over space.

I’m not sure that the shape bed 3 will take yet. one end is done, the end i’ve just described, in a sort of L shape, with one more bit that needs weeding/digging over, where i was kneeling. the other end is dug over and weeded, the end with the raspberries. its the bit in the middle that needs doing!! its also large enough that i’m asking myself how i’m going to get to the fruit, particularly if i build a sort of net cage to keep the birds off. So that’s still to be done, but i’m glad i’ve sorted out almost all the fruit now, just the melon seeds to sow.

I’ve also sowed the first of my salad boxes. I had a terrible time last year with lettuce and slugs: so much that i didn’t get a single solitary homegrown lettuce from my garden! all i got was rocket. So this year i resolved to do something different. not only have i watered in the nematodes to (hopefully) keep the slugs off, and am squishing every snail i can find, i’m also growing my salad differently. An idea Sez gave me: growing basic salads (salad leaves, pea tips, radishes, spring onions) in fairly shallow containers, on a rotational basis. each box is a week’s worth of salad, i hope, and i’ll have four to six of them, which i will rotate throughout the summer. week 1, sow box one, week 2, box 2, and so on, and hopefully by the time i’m ready to sow either box 5, 6 or 7, box 1 will be ready for eating. all depends how fast things grow, i guess.

Finally, (today) at the top end of bed 8, i sowed the first batch of various greens: swiss chard, both red and multicoloured, spinach, and spinach beet. bed 8 is in the side garden and is shaded for the latter half of the day, so with luck those plants will enjoy that shade 🙂

Oh, and i cut the grass! I’m using one of those battery operated strimmers (need to buy a lawnmower at some point i guess) so i can only do so much at once: the grass got a bit long so it takes a fair bit of the battery to strip it down. I only did about a third of the garden before the battery started wearing down, and will do more tomorrow.

I must also be doing something right. There’s a very cheeky blackbird hopping through my new beds, being watched all eagleeyed by Jess. I think she’s fishing for worms, probably got babies to feed. hopefully she’ll take the wireworms!!!

On Sunday i also worked on the garden, although i did so mostly indoors. I did plant 2 honeysuckle plants that i’d bought from Aldi, up against the fence in bed 5. Hopefully they’ll grow up the fence and make the garden all scented over the summer. I chose the variety “Repens” and “Serotina”. Inside, i set about sowing seeds: 2 small mushroom trays with 6 loo tubes each with sunflower seeds: 6 of a normal giant single sunflower, and 6 of a variety Sez gave me, “Claret”. I also sowed 6 trays of 6 loo roll tubes each of sweetpea seeds of different varieties, including some seed i kept from last year! Be interesting to see if they grow at all – my first attempt at growing completely free. I also sowed a tray of vegetable seeds, different varieties of winter veg: celeriac, kale, leeks, and some flowers. The courgettes have been hit by sunscorch on the bedroom windowsill so they’ve been moved temporarily to the bathroom windowsill, until they can go into the greenhouse for their last few weeks (and i might even put a few in the ground in the next week or so).

Yesterday saw me working in the kitchen: i made bread, apple pie, apple ravioli, lemon drizzle cake and chicken pesto pasta for dinner.

I also took some update pics to show you how i’ve been getting on.. behind the cut, as always…

Salad Box 1 – Just sowed

Tomato and pepper seedlings

flowers of a red or black currant bush

Compare this with the photo above and you’ll see how much work has been done! right side of Bed 3.. containing red & black currant bushes

Left side of bed 3 – raspberry and tayberry canes

Right side of bed 5

Back garden

side garden

not very clear, but its the tip of a potato plant

Nigella seedlings

One of the honeysuckle plants

And the other one

Left end of Bed 5

Garlic plant


Pea seedlings

Jersey Walking stick kale flowers – hope to harvest some seeds

sunflower and sweetpeas sowed in toilet roll tubes in the cold frame.

Sorry, no photos of the cake/apple pie.. lol