Slow painting

Friday 8 July 2011

24 raspberries or 56 leeks?

Not 24 raspberry canes, but 24 raspberry berries. That was the harvest from our 'one more chance' canes this week, so the decision was made that they'd had their chance and were coming out. There was bushy new growth coming from the base of some of them, but this has been the case from the beginning, and the canes then fail and die as they get taller. Most of them had died off completely. Some heavy digging by my husband was needed to get them out - they were firmly rooted despite their feebleness. Luckily this part of the plot was in shade by that point. It was the hottest weekend of the year, when Scotland was plunged into sudden, startling heat. All over the city people were getting that peculiarly Scottish type of one-sided sunburn, sitting outside bars and pubs. We chose to sweat it out at our green gym.

In place of the raspberries I planted 56 'Mussleburgh' leeks, thinking ahead as I did so to winter and realising how quickly the growing year goes round.

It was an onion family stint at the plot, as I weeded the onions and shallots. This year's crop of shallots has been disappointing - small bulbs and a sparse crop.

The weeds liked their spot between the rows of onions. The thick, strappy onion stems kept catching me unawares and jabbing into my face as I focused on the next weed. I envisaged turning up at Casualty and explaning that I was there because an onion had poked me in the eye.