After another weekend working hard in the garden, it looks very different again. Ryan was working on Saturday, so I spent the morning outside. The first thing I did was erect my new raised bed cover, which would have been easier had it not been a bit breezy! But I got there in the end. It’s basically a plastic cold frame that fits over the top of my raised beds. It has nice long anchor pegs to hold it down, and is now being used to harden off plants before they go outside, and protect my brassica seedlings (I bought Flower Sprouts and Purple Sprouting broccoli from the garden centre; now I have to spend the summer protecting them from every pest in the known universe!).
Next up was moving my worms out of the bath. They ended up there when an unexpected gift of worms arrived when I didn’t have a protected outdoor space for them. Living with worms in the bath has been an interesting experience; some of them are great explorers and have escaped and found themselves quite some way from safety when the sun came up. As it is with all explorers, some of them survived the experience (and were returned to the wormery) and some of them didn’t. With the arrival of warmer weather they were getting friskier and I was rescuing dehydrated worms from the plug hole (I put the plug in!) every morning.
And so they have taken up residence in my bug Can-O-Worms wormery outside, in a sheltered spot. I gave them some nice peat-free compost as a bedding area, should they need it, but they had turned one tray of food waste into nice compost by themselves – that’s in the middle. The right hand side is the half-composted food waste. I added another layer to the Can-O-Worms on top, with more food waste, topped off with shredded paper. As the wormery is outside, and I can’t find a rain cover for it, I have left the tap open with a bucket underneath. It’s good practice to do that anyway – drowning is a leading cause of worm death in waterlogged wormeries!
Then I moved out to my ‘allotment’ strip of garden, to where the first potato shoots needed earthing up, which I accomplished by dumping handfuls of peat-free compost onto them. Of course, it has been a few days since I did that now and they need doing again…. This photo is of the Axona variety; the Kifli was slower to come up, but is catching up now.
There are 4 raised beds in the allotment strip. Two are planted with potatoes, the other two are earmarked for squash plants – currently seedlings. I started preparing the beds by putting a bag of manure on each one, and covering it in black plastic. The worms can get to work on that lot, and the squash will be well fed when I plant them out!
On Sunday Ryan laid some slabs for the little shed and we moved it into position. It’s no longer blocking the arbour, so we have somewhere to sit again! I also planted out the oca and ulluco tubers, which had been somewhat neglected on the windowsill in the spare room. The mashua I potted up, as they aren’t destined for a raised bed, but for somewhere they can climb.
And as a final touch I have hung up my flying pig, which is currently planted with improbable chives. I have been waiting for my Cha Cha Chives to do their thing for over a year – rather than producing the beautiful purple chive flowers you would normally expect (and I have a standard chive plant, so I’m not missing out on those!) they produce bundles of tiny chives at the top of their stems. It’s quite lovely. I have a photo of one about to ‘flower’ a few days ago; when it stops raining I need to pop out and take another of them in their full glory!
What’s lovely in your garden at the moment?
This blog post was written by Emma Cooper and was published on The Unconventional Gardener website. If you're reading it elsewhere you may want to navigate away from plagiarised content.