It won’t surprise anyone to know i was out in the garden again today, and a little bit yesterday (although i had to go into town yesterday to sort out my bus pass, which runs out on March 31st. I took the opportunity to do a few photo sessions too, but more on that in another post). With such glorious weather i’d be daft not to – esp as the weather forecast promises more inclement weather next week.

finished fence - very handsome too! all i want now is the rest done!

finished fence - very handsome too! all i want now is the rest done!

But first, the new fence. This has been built on the side garden, in front of the wall that used to seperate our garden from the front. The wall was very low, Jess could jump it, and provided no security whatsoever. We’ve been complaining about both the wall and the existing fence around the garden for quite some time, and had no idea that they were going to do this – however, they showed up at 9.30am yesterday and started hammering, banging, hollering (which woke Michiel up, who woke me up in turn). I dressed, went out and asked if they were planning to do the rest of the fencing as well, and it turns out they’re not, at least, not now. Still, i won’t complain. Something is better than nothing and it does look much better than it did. However, one bit of it is daft. The wall that they’ve built the fence in front of is about waist height. For anyone wanting to get into our garden from the front garden, all they have to do is to climb the wall, then hop over the fence. hmmmm. However, security in the rest of the garden is such a joke, i’m not going to say anything – for now. when they do the rest of the fence though, i might ask them to rip down the wall while they’re at it. [More behind the cut, and more photos!]

half built fence. You can see the height of thewall behind the fence relative to the fence, here. Daft, int it?

half built fence. You can see the height of thewall behind the fence relative to the fence, here. Daft, in't it?

When i came back from going into town they’d finished the fence, cleared up and gone, and a very handsome fence it is, too, i must say. Sez suggested growing climbers up it, and i may do, but its not an area that is overlooked by the flat (it’d make a huge difference if it was) and it doesn’t get much sun – nothing from about midday onwards. Still, the potatoes grew there alright last year so i may well yet do so. I pulled my gardening gloves on and went outside  to pot up the broad beans, peas and sweetpeas i said i was going to do on monday and never got round to doing.  I did this on the new staging, which i have to say, works very very well. I’m dead chuffed with that, although I soon got very cold fingers, as i was working with wet compost, and with the sun hiding behind clouds, it wasn’t that warm either. Still, i got it done, then closed up shop for the night.

loo roll tubes full of compost with seeds planted

loo roll tubes full of compost with seeds planted

Today i’ve been working on the hole left by the greenhouse. If you’ll remember, the hole was part of my anti-blowing away technique, since those flimsy greenhouses are so prone to catching the wind and pooft! they’re gone. so i dug a hole to stand the greenhouse in – and i have to say, it was most effective, the first greenhouse lasted almost a whole winter, and was only destroyed by a rotten fence breaking loose in high winds and slamming into the greenhouse. Otherwise, it’d have been fine. Anyway. With deciding not to have a greenhouse this year, i decided to fill that hole in. Frankly, if and when we move it would need to be done anyway, and the compost dalek was getting a bit full – it’d never been turned, and had been half filled over the course of about a year and a half. Well overdue.

new bed, all nice and pristine (although you can still see a few egg shells if you look closely!)

new bed, all nice and pristine (although you can still see a few egg shells if you look closely!)

So my first job was to lift the cat cage out – the roof of the old greenhouse, which Michiel put in to stop cats peeing in there – then i dug over the ground, as it was very very compacted. Fortunately, a winter’s exposure to frost, rain and wind had loosened the soil so it wasn’t rock solid, and 15 minutes work with a garden fork had the worst of it forked over. Next: the compost heap. Fortunately, its right next to that bed, so i was simply able to lift the dalek off the heap, skim the top of the compost off into a wheelbarrow, where it hadn’t yet decomposed, then fork the rest straight into that new bed. It didn’t smell as bad as i expected – the most disturbing sight was all the egg shells! We’d put them whole into the compost, and of course, they’d stayed whole. Oh well. i topped the rotten mess off with a mix of garden soil (from beds 1 and 2, to get the bacteria for the nodes for beans, and from the side garden) and some other soil i had wrapped in a tarp, that originally came from that hole, and it looks pretty good.

[Mum reckons that it’ll be a good fertile bed – she told me a story of when dad worked at a company that dealt with eggs, and he came home with a big sack full of egg shells for the garden, one year. Unfortunately he left it on the patio for a week and when he got round to digging them into the garden, it was stinking to high heaven. All he could do was dig a big hole, dump them in, then run away to breathe, then run back to shovel soil in as fast as he could! She did say though that the plants that were planted ontop did ever so well – so on that basis i should have some good broadies and lettuces this year, as that’s what’s going in that bed.]

I’ve also put the wigwams back up – the tall canes with netting attached, for peas and beans to grow, and its good to have some structural height back in the garden. Its slowly but surely taking shape again. Still lots to do, but i can only do a bit at a time!

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