Slow allotment gardening in the life of a busy family
Thursday, 17 May 2012
A watched potato
A watched potato, like a kettle, never seems to boil (or in this case, chit). I was late buying seed potatoes this year. The seed catalogues had all sold out, and I was resigning myself to a year without potatoes. But I came across boxes of them, several desirable varieties, in that wonderful emporium A&I Supplies in Elgin. The A must stand for 'agricultural', and the I 'industrial'. Chicken coops, gigantic rakes and hay forks, protective clothing of every sort, steel toe-capped boots, mucking out boots, vast bags of dog food, bird seed....
My goodness they took a long time to sprout. But here they are just before planting, spread out on the sports pages of the newspaper, which are the section no-one in our household reads unless it's a report of a Scotland rugby match (husband) or rowing or cross-country skiing during the Olympics (me). The cricket report above is written in a strange foreign language of trajectories and spin and bounce. I haven't a clue who the footballer below is.
However the potatoes are now safely in the ground - Duke of York and Charlotte. No growth showing yet, and I don't blame them. Temperatures here are bumping along at 8 or 9 degrees. The ground is cold. Trees are struggling to come into leaf. I'm not even thinking of sowing seeds outside. I go to work wearing my down-filled winter coat and gloves, so the thought of pushing seeds into stone-cold earth is not attractive, either for them or me.