Purple broad beans meet The Supremes

We’ve had some cracking weather in London of late and combined with the rain last week things are coming on strong in the garden. The Crimson Flowered Broad Beans started to bloom at the weekend and they’re looking great! They’re a nice alternative to the black and white flowered ones (which we love as well) and there’s a interesting post about the variety on the Daughter of the Soil (“Adventures in experimental horticulture”) blog here. The blog is well worth having a look at if you love heritage vegetables, seed saving and experimental gardening.The bed at the bottom of the garden is bursting into life as well with the seed potatoes, onions and strawberries starting to reach upwards. It may be a tad early but we’ve already made use of our home-made comfrey liquid which will help them on their way. The bamboo canes that were used as a cat deterrent have now been commissioned elsewhere (helping some tomato plants) and the spuds have been earthed up even more.

Music accompaniment this week is firstly a couple of versions of the excellent pressure and slide rhythm by Hubert Lee then Sugar Minott. On the Rt Hon David Rodigan show last week he played a mini-history of the rhythm including a couple of choice cuts of it by the great Prince Buster here and here.

Also secondly a big shout to our mate Will who recommended the LeMellotron/Pierre Wax 30 mix below. It’s a right musical mixture and one to turn up loud so it can be heard while out in the back garden. The great 2 hr mix is a slice of audio goodness and includes I:Cube, The excellent Mothers “Faith (Yilwani Imfazwe”) with a nice Lee Perry sample and Dennis Coffey and a whole lot more. It also includes the breakbeat/falsetto vocal disco classic “Come into my life” from The Supremes. Roll on more tunes and more sunshine!

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A Poppy and Pilooski

Yesterday morning we awoke to sight of this fantastic Danish Flag Poppy which has been over-wintering on the patio in an old pond-plant basket found in the street a while ago. The Poppy seeds were originally procured from ebay a few years ago and this plant was grown from seeds collected from pods last year. The flower only lasted a day, closed up in the evening and (possibly because of the downpour in London today) it has now gone but boy it was worth it!

Also yesterday while listening to a Stones Throw podcast from Breakbeat Lou this corker of a tune from Dee Edwards  “Why can’t there be love” was played. This put us in mind of the seriously barmy Pillooski mix of the tune from a few years ago. Tune(s)!

What a bam bam

It was some bamboo canes and a couple of old Belfast sinks that saved the day at Weeds HQ last weekend. The builders are in next door and they’ve erected a 8ft high chipwood berlin wall type structure between us. To say it was initially a sight for sore eyes is an understatement so something had to be sorted.

A couple of the heavy Belfast sinks left behind by the previous owners were moved about a bit. The climbers that were growing a bit wild in them were given a prune with some secateurs and then trained around some bamboo wigwam canes. Then after a good water and a bit of a wipe down a visual compromise was reached early Saturday afternoon (above). Bamboo canes are also in use at the veg patch at the bottom of the garden as a bit of a cat deterrent thrown over the now “earthed up” seed potatoes that have now started to come through the surface. The canes will hopefully keep out the local moggies (including our own) that like to use the bed as a cat loo.

Also last weekend we put in some seeds of the Echium ‘Snow Tower’ which we bought off ebay. We love anything here that is described as “rare”, “giant” or “unusual” and I reckon this flower might at least fit two of those descriptions. It’s a hardy biennial that in the first year grows a large rosette of silver-grey leaves and then in the second a tall white flower spike of up to 15ft high. Now you’re talking!

And here’s a couple of tunes that will come in handy if you ever have to move a couple of heavy sinks. The first is a 12 minutes well jazzed out tune from Kamasi Washington called “Truth” as heard on the Tom Ravenscroft show and over a redo of the Queen of the Minstrel rhythm Sycorah with “Undercover Lover” as played on the Rt Hon David Rodigan show. Both are tunes!