I haven’t been in the garden for ages – not since I managed to mow on the weekend. Hang on – that was only five days ago! It feels so much longer. But not being able to garden for five days in a row is a bit of a hardship for this gardener.
The weekend was wonderful, sunny, warm and most importantly – not a drop of rain, and I was able to mow for the first time in what seems like months and the patch looks so much better for it. I made a wee video and loaded it on to You Tube so I could actually see what state the garden was in when I look back from the heights of summer. You can watch it >here<. It doesn’t actually look too bad for having a mow. However it does highlight just how much work still needs to be done. There is about six weeks until our last frost date, but we’ll be away for two of those weeks so all of a sudden I only have a month to get the garden ready.
Just as it dawns on me just how much I still have do, the weather decides to make things a little tricky and it rained so heavily that the soil is very much back to soggy and boggy and the kids have taken to filling their water pistol directly from the lawn! Weeding soggy soil is not practical – believe me, I’ve tried it before! So I have to wait anxiously for the ground to dry out so I can prepare beds, conscious of the days passing me by without so much as weed pulled.
I can’t see things getting much better as the boffins at the weather office released a report showing their expectations for the spring and while our area is supposed to have “near average” temperatures, the “soil moisture levels and river flows are all likely to be in the above normal or near normal range.” They have been wrong before, so going forward I am going to count on the possibility of errors!
Anyway, now that I have finished bleating about the weather, I’ll tell you what gardening I have done. I sowed some seed. It felt so lovely to be just sitting in my shed and gently placing seeds in fluffy seed raising soil. I was tempted to plant everything, but lessons from the past have taught me this is a bad idea. So alongside the second sowing of peppers from the other day (which haven’t come up yet) I repotted the tomatoes as their true leaves had come out and I sowed extra tomato seeds to make up for the ones that didn’t come up so I can have a full set of spares, should I need them.
Then I sowed my melons – always a tricky one as it isn’t ideal conditions for melons and we are at the whim of the weather to provide us with the long hot summer necessary for melons to mature. This year I am going to grow some in the garden and some in the greenhouse, in a desperate last ditch effort to actually harvest melons. I also sowed a whole load of sunflower seeds and marigold seeds and then I carefully took the seed trays over to the greenhouse, trying not to slip over in the mud.
Then I thought … “I’ll water them all in with my greenhouse irrigation misting system” as this is still very much a novelty for me. But when I went into the greenhouse to check, I found that I’d turned the tap on too much and the water pressure was too high and so I tried to move all the plants out of the direct line of the water and juggled everyone’s locations. Once I was finished I stood back and was satisfied I have done enough damage limitation, I looked at myself. I was soaked right through. I was that drowned rat! Why I didn’t think to turn the hose off I have no idea!
I couldn’t resist chucking in another couple of cool spring flowers…
Come again soon – hopefully I won’t have caught a cold!
Sarah the Gardener : o )