Slow painting

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Destroy if found

Apologies - photo quality in today's post is even hazier than usual. I had to brace myself against the gale to take these shots. However much I tried I couldn't get this first shot centred. But after reading Rafael's post about earthworms at Un jardin potager en Languedoc, this notice in the glass case at the entrance to the site struck me afresh today. It was such a dismal, dark day that I felt sure I would encounter the dreaded flatworm, and even worse, have to deal with it. However, no worms at all, not even benign ones. Have they all gone deeper into the soil with the recent cold weather, or is our plot sadly lacking in nutrients?

Despite the weather, I dug. We have so much to get weed-free before sowing and planting start in the spring that I thought even a little ground cleared would be better than nothing. The part I was digging is nearest to the sycamore trees just over the access road, and the soil was full of the keys.

I know I should have picked them out, one by one, but I didn't have the energy. The rain was coming down more and more heavily, until I had to admit that it was too wet to dig. By that time everything I touched was covered in glaur (pronounced 'glor': sticky, semi-liquid mud, a feature of Scottish farmyards). Still, it was a small gain, and my feeling of virtue was increased by the fact that I was the only person mad enough to be out allotmenteering in that weather.


Sue said...

I admire you for having a garden where you don't live. We have some community gardens here, but I wouldn't be able to keep up with one. You may have to be low income to have a plot, though.

I hope the spring cooperates when it comes, and your ground is ready to plant without the bad kind of worms.


Lindab said...

Sue, we're actually coming to enjoy the short walk to get to the allotment site. It's just far enough to feel that we've left the domestic scene behind, and to be in a little separate world. Allotments in Britain aren't income-linked, although there is a reduction in the annual fee for unwaged and retired. But they're open to all, and in Edinburgh for the very reasonable annual rent of £60 - about $90 I think.

Gunilla said...

Hi Linda

Thank´s for the comment on my blog.
The tracks are from a person who has walked over the ice, It was several persons that was out fishing.that day.

Gunilla in Sweden

Peggy said...

Allotments in Ireland are growing in demand.Most of them including ours are privately run by farmers etc.We pay 200e per year for one about 20ftx30ft!
A lot of pressure is being put on city councils now to supply them, so hopefully they will oblige but for this year now anyway it will be too late.

VP said...

Wow I'm impressed you even bothered - I'd have turned tail and gone home!

I love the word glaur - does it sound like glower, like I've been doing at my plot lately?

Thanks for your visit over at my place - you're right re zones and microclimates. After all, with all those factors to take into account, just 11 zones seems a bit paltry. I think they're just a rough guide and there's no substitute for local knowledge. I was surprised most of Scotland's in the same zone as the rest of the UK, as we know the growing conditions are so different, just on daylength and frost days alone!