Things have been a bit mad here the last couple of weeks as life has been conspiring against us (and trying to grind me down!) I’ve also got just over the shock of seeing the back of the house in Green rather than the dreary Grey undercoat that’s been on it for nearly 2 years as I finally got off my backside and got the paintbrush out. It’s about the same sort of time that the fence has been in a half-painted state too!
After months of nothing but bare bamboo canes (AKA “Pete’s Sweet Pea Tower!) the Sweet Peas are now giving it large. I think they are from some overwintered “perfumed mix” seeds I got off ebay for less than a couple of quid with P+P. It was looking a bit ropey in the spring so I popped some more seeds in and now it’s gone bonkers. I do like a sweet pea and so do the Bees it seems. The Sweet Williams are now out after a good years wait. I reckon it’s been worth it to see a bit of mad colour now. Here’s what the garden was looking like the other morning. The Plum tree is steaming on (see the specialised root watering device beside it aka an old grey bit of plastic pipe found in a skip) and in the lower left corner of the picture those mad egyptian onions which I got well cheap in the local garden centre.
The slugs have also been giving me gip as I’ve lost a few plants over the last few weeks. I was told by a gardening mate that there was a piece in The Telegraph a few years ago that mentioned making your own nematodes (microscopic eelworms than feed on slugs) (the recipe is here!) I’m all up for the DIY punk ethic and all that, what with the composting, the wormery in a bucket and Comfrey liquid but DIY nematodes, no thanks! The thought of collecting 20 odd slugs and keeping them rotting in a bucket is not my thing. I blame it on the time I stood on a slug once in my barefeet on the way to the loo early in the morning when we lived in a grotty bedsit in Clapham years ago. Have you ever tried getting that slime off? urghhh!
On a brighter note I was passing Victoria Embankment gardens the other morning and watched a council gardener in his cream jeans and bright yellow fred perry with the collars up (do they sound like gardening clothes to you?) doing press-ups while holding a trowel next to the flower bed while his mates were putting in annuals. Brilliant, don’t you just love those council gardeners!
Also I was told by another gardening mate that if you just lightly “wilt” Carrot Tops they are like Spinach. I have never heard that before. I know Joe Maiden from the brill Gardening with Tim and Joe was talking the other week about eating baby Beetroot leaves in a salad after doing some thinning out. They sound better than Carrot tops though! Big up the Summer (when it finally arrives and stays for more than two days).