We have a week off from our builder this week, which is a good thing because I have to shift everything out of the back kitchen so that can be sorted out. The lounge is now done, and looking good and ready for painting, the music room/ snug is just needing the paintwork finished, the kitchen is finished, apart from shelves still needing to be done, but is looking a total mess as it gets stuffed full of the contents of the back kitchen. Three months time, though, and all should be sorted out again. Meanwhile ..........
Nearly 6 kgs of cherries......that is what I now need to de-pip and can.
Out on the veg plots......
Veg Plot 1:
The greenery you can see on the left is all weeds! But the faint lines of green on the right are seedlings coming up. Unfortunately those seedlings are tangled up with vigorous growing weeds, and it is taking an age to rescue them. A lot of seeds have not come up at all. Last night I got despondent about the state of the veg plot. Having started so late in the season we could not expect much effort from the seeds we planted, but the kale, cabbages, chard, some beetroot, a couple of tomatoes, a few coriander, other brassicas, and all the courgettes are up. But what we are doing well with are the beans. We had the idea of planting them along the fence line (on the right) so that they can climb the wire for support. All have come up.
To make me feel a little cheered up about the veg plot, we bought a few plants. They looked a little sad in the shop, so I was quite happy to rescue them.
We are watering the rows by hand, with watering cans. I am building quite sturdy arm muscles now. Carrying two full watering cans from the water butts to each individual row was a hard on me at first, but now I swing along, ....... well not quite, but I am getting there!
So why water by hand? Because the weeds don't need any help to grow, and by using the hosepipe they are assisted to grow even more rampantly that they already are. Watering by hand gives us a feeling of having some control about what is watered and what isn't.
So where is the water coming from? Our well out in the front garden. Lester has rigged up hosepipes, pumps, more hosepipes, another pump, and goodness knows what else, and fills this container, which is out back by doors to the middle barn .........
......the well dries up when the container is half full, so Lester does a morning and evening pump to give us the water we need. However, the well is starting to give us more at each pumping so we think that regular use is waking up the underground streams which feed the well.
From here the water is then pumped to Veg Plot 1, where we fill the water butts up.
It's a start. Last year we watered from the pond in the woods, but we had a lot of rain last year so the pond remained full for most of the season. Most years, though, it dries up mid summer. We could use water from the river, but our big pump has died, so we can't. So, hopefully, the well will keep us going.
Collecting rain water is on our list of 'to do's' but is way down that list at the moment!
Veg Plot 2:
...... and obviously nothing growing here, not even weeds! This is the work of the pigs, who have tilled the ground for us, but also given it a hard surface. If I have time I might plant some winter squash in this plot. Last year we had a huge harvest of squash, which fed the pigs for weeks, so it would be well worth the effort to get some harvest off this plot. Just need a bit of rain to soften the surface.
Veg Plot 3:
The three young pigs have just been put in this plot, and are just about to start digging it up. We are under pressure, though, to get them into the freezer because they are getting bigger by the day. Being Tamworths they are slow growers, but they seem to be doing a growth spurt lately, and are getting bigger by the day.
Need to have an Internet search about what to do about flea beetles, which seem to be happily populating themselves on the kale and brassicas. Would appreciate any helpful hints about what you do. Thanks.
Off to get some more cherries pipped, and then off out to the veg plot to get those plants I bought into the ground, otherwise they will sit around for days waiting for me to remember to do the job, which is a habit of mine........ I shall not say too much about the onions and leeks I bought and which sat in the bucket of water waiting to be planted out for so long that they all rotted. I felt bad about the waste of plant life and the waste of money, and vowed to be more self disciplined in the future.