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Put in 2 hours of weed pulling and general tidying this morning much earlier than normal because I didn't sleep well last night and was up at the crack of dawn. We've rather been neglecting the allotment lately but there was no real harm done - rather a lot of weeds but the soil is good and loose so they're easy enough to pull up. I really enjoy the time I spend there and especially today because I filled a Sainsbury's bag for life with vegetables to bring home and get creative with! Lettuce, runner beans, kohl rabi, a white onion and 2 lovely marrows. Stuffed marrow for tea tonight!
I had planned to spend at least 2 hours on the allotment today, pulling up a few weeds, listening to the birdies singing their little beaks off but an unexpected payment taken from my account by the dear folk at Council Tax - nearly £500 - no warning - nothing left in my bank account because of it - meant I had to change my plans and beat a hasty path to our County Town and try to sort it out! How can they do that with no warning? I had budgeted for £88 and they took nearly £500!!! Blood sugars spiked a litte bit too.......
Going to spend the evening drawing. That should calm me down a bit.
Sitting guarding the exhibition....waiting for people to walk in.... no one asks questions...... walk in, walk out, maybe say hello, maybe not. So I drew a zebra I like drawing zebras.
There's lots of change on the horizon for me.
My first pension was paid into my bank account and my bus pass arrived. The academic year is over and the end of year exhibition is all set up ready to open tomrrow evening. Just one more year to go and I will graduate as a Bachelor of Arts, provided I keep up the work and get the results that is. There is also one more change.... I'm not ready to post about it yet as there are still a few uncertainties but, suffice it to say, this is a life changing thing; my life will be completely different - COMPLETELY - if it all goes to plan. The 'uncertainties' are beyond my control and are therefore causing me a bit of bother; got to keep a tight check on those BG levels in the meantime. I think the allotment is going to be a haven over the next few weeks but, as for today, the bindweed and pigeons can have their way. I'm staying home and drinking coffee.
....is a drawing I did the other night whilst sitting in the pub. Inspired by a photo taken by a friend of a statue in a cemetery, this took me about 2 hours. I quite like it but think I could do better with a little more time and observation. I might do that this evening.....
I'm going to plant out my runner beans, marrows and French beans....
Today I've been cleaning and painting the studios at uni ready for the end of year exhibition.... I'm covered in white emulsion.
The pigeons have helped themselves to my brassicas!!
Battle lines are now drawn up: more bunting, fish on sticks that flap in the breeze and a protective mesh tunnel should see the little blighters off. I will have home grown brussels this Christmas!
No gardening today - I've nearly finished this year's uni work! Got the results back for my essay and am pleased to say I was awarded a distinction - which surprised me no end because I knew there were faults and failures in my argument (they must have been well researched faults and failures!). Just got a large block of lard to form into a cube and put up on a pedestal and check through the rest of my written work and it's done (apart from studio clearing and setting up the exhibition). I also submitted my application for next year's BA course. UCAS ask so many questions and seem to be more concerned about site security than my bank!
One more year to go and then I can rest on my laurels for a bit. I have a grand plan for my future (what's left of it) which I shall write about when the time is right.
It's 50 paces from the centre of my plot to the stream and 50 paces back again. I filled 10 watering cans today so that's a minimum of 1000 paces just to do the watering. But everything is looking healthy, the slugs and snails are scowling at me, held back by a barrier of slug pellets and unable to get at my brassicas without slithering across something deadly. The pigeons seem to be distrusting of the bunting and are leavings things alone for the time being. A bed has been prepared for the marrow plants which are coming along nicely in the 'greenhouse' and I continue to wage war with the bindweed - it's EVERYWHERE!! What is the point of bindweed....
I need to get out there and do some digging but am currently relaxing in a 2 x CWC morning (they don't happen often and are cherished whenever the opportunity arises). I will get dressed, honestly I will,
...is that you get to meet a lot of people, one of whom has just delivered a couple of palletts to my plot. These will be used as a base for my IBC so that it's high enough off the ground to get a can under the tap. He's got another couple for me too which I will use to make a contained compost area. I think that man deserves a pint.
On the down side, Snail War has begun.....
For the first time in ages I didn't go to the allotment today. All day was spent getting things ready for an exhibition I'm taking part in this weekend and, by the time I got home I was too tired to do anything much at all (apart from sit quietly and drink tea). Just by means of an update though I now have brussels and broccoli sprouting in the raised beds, some runner bean plants and marrows coming on in the little 'greenhouse', kalettes and khol rabi coming along nicely in beds and there are gooseberries and blueberries appearing on their bushes. I have a day off on Wednesday and that might be the next time I get the chance to do anything - the exhibition must take priority for the time being.
Here's a sneak pre-view for anyone who might be interested...
Been at work all day and it was a very busy service. I didn't really want to go to the allotment this evening but the watering needed doing or my runner bean plants would perish! I drove down rather than walked; I don't think my legs would have carried me up to hill on the way home!
The runner beans are fine and I'm glad I went because they were thirsty. I put some netting over the raised beds to protect cabbages from pigeons (I'm sure they sit in the trees watching and waiting for me to leave), turned over one of the recently dug beds to expose some annual weed roots, made several trips to and from the stream fetching cans of water and then sat in the shade of the shed just listening to the birds. They are SO noisy! I have one more day before the end of the Easter holidays and uni starts again and I think I'll spend it defining the next border. Maybe I'll plant some bulbs.
I noticed the first shoots this evening - broccoli and lettuce - so exciting! I never get over the feeling of wonder when a tiny seed turns into an edible plant!
There is a stream along one edge of the plots. It's not too far away but it's still quite a task filling can after can to water the plants (and I've nearly fallen in on more than one occasion). The dogs love it though and always go in for a paddle and a quick drink. This year on a date yet to be confirmed, the church are providing us with a water supply so that no one plot holder will have to walk more than 20 yards to get to a tap. We'll all be able to use hosepipes for the first time - there will probably be a ban this summer!
Bit cold and overcast today but made a thermos and headed off to the allotment. A friend gave me some old raised bed frames the other day and I had fun today preparing their spots. Three down and one to go, cabbages already planted in the first! The bright spot of today was a robin following me about to pick up the worms my digging had exposed. He was really brave and didn't seem phased by me (or the dogs) at all. I guess he must have been hungry.
Planted round cabbage, 2 marrow plants half a dozen strawberry plants and an olive tree (hoping I'll still be alive to sit under it's shade!). Tomorrow is reserved for a quick trip to the garden centre and then digging a border for some flowers.
I wish I was doing this in my own garden