Rain stopped play

I know the rain stopped a lot of gardeners’ play recently, but I for one was having a teeny bit of a smug moment about it all.

My lovely new water butt

My lovely new water butt

Only the week before, my birthday present had consisted of some new greenhouse guttering and a shiny new water butt – who said romance was dead… flowers are sooo last year!  After the other half had spent the entire weekend dodging the showers to get it all installed, I was hoping for a veritable downpour… and that’s exactly what we got.

Not only was the new water butt filling up at a grand pace, but the garden was getting a good old water too – If I strained my ears, I could almost hear the sound of slurping roots. And, after being told our area was on a drought warning, we certainly needed it – looking round the garden, some plants had fared slightly better than others.

After rescuing my brassicas from the beak of a hungry pigeon earlier in the year, the purple sprouting broccoli (PSB) has grown into fine specimens, and we’re getting a good crop from it. Alas, the same can’t be said for the savoys. Some look as though they have the potential to heart up, but some haven’t so much bolted, as scarpered and run for the hills. I think it was down to the warm spell we had. Not to worry though, some will make tasty treats for the chickens, and I’ll let a few of them flower so I can save the seeds for next year.

The PSB's in fine fettle

The PSB's in fine fettle

Meanwhile, back in the greenhouse, a load more brassicas I’d started off were about ready to be planted out. Fast running out of room in the garden, I set about preparing a new patch. After clearing the area, a few laps round with the rotovator soon dug it over, and before long the bed was ready to be planted.

Whilst preparing the area, I discovered ‘Chicken Olympics’: an entertaining game that anyone can play, providing you have 1) a couple of hens and 2) a worm. Simply place the worm on top of the wire in the coop. The birds will spot it, and the High Jump trials will begin. After said worm has dropped through, it’s time for the 20 metre sprint. I have to say that Winnie was the clear champion, due to her speed, eye to beak co-ordination and sheer dexterity. Oh, and I’m sure being a bit of a thug helped too.

Anyway, patch ready, in went three types of cabbage, next year’s PSB and Brussels, and some cauliflower plants. Slug pellets went down, netting went on, and we’ll have to see what grows and what doesn’t.

My family are cock-a-hoop – they thought they’d seen the last of cabbage…

Latest from The Hinckley Times – 26 April

Hinckley Times 26 April 2012

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