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Turf war and hospital

Andy, OIC Lottie Plottie’s, plot has presented him with this monstrous slab of concrete, digging out is not an option!

Ian’s online research has shown that this is the part foundations of a hospital which was on the OS maps for 1938!!  WOW – who knew!  Apparently this hospital was still in existence in 1983, so it will be interesting to research further and see why it was demolished.

This does, of course, explain why our soil is so fantastic – all that bone meal from the mortuary.

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Small but perfectly formed ‘wet’ garlic showing through – is there anything better than seeing new shoots – I think not

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One would expect to find Blackadder hiding behind this lot!

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One girl, one heck of a lot of turf!

Jack and his beanstalk

When one wants bean poles of eight foot height one needs a very large hubby – thank you tall hubby, I just knew your height would be useful

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Much activity is to been seen in the background – it’s a truly wonderful sight.  Even after working the plot for three weeks I’m still in awe that we have actually pulled this off after two years of hard work from my Boss – OIC Andy Done – take a bow Andy – if it were up to me you would get a Knighthood!

Meanwhile back at the homestead

Some really inspiring colour, one very nutty cat and two birds asking for their Agent!

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Euphorbia, always a good, strong space filler

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These lovely primroses always make me think of Cornwall and then I get homesick

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What! WHAAAT!
Yes, yes, I know I’m on your veg-protecting net but just how cute do I look eh!

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Oookaaay, I’m just soo bored now

Don’t turn around, she’s got that picture-taking thing in her hand and I haven’t had a chance to speak to our Agent yet!

The heart of the plot

….a shed – everyone should have a shed at some point in their lives.  I now have a shed, I am a shed-owner, I need to name it – suggestions most welcome please.

The shed, purchased from Argos at the huge price (!)  of £109, arrived at 0715hrs this morning.  Due to location of the plots the delivery driver has to be met at the Guard Room and escorted onto the site – I very kindly offered to stay home and make breakfast while Ian did the escort duty.

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   Stock taking underway

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One could be forgiven for thinking this shed-building chap preferred shed-building to gardening!

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  A beer is called for methinks

Now to the serious business of gardening – turf-cutting is still underway and the planting is so far only consisted of Jerusalem Artichokes and new spuds, I’m hoping the JAs will provide a much needed wind-break.  Having cut the turf away, I used a bulb planter to make life easy for myself, I also used the planter to drop the spuds into their bed – so much easier than digging out trenches.

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I can’t remember when I last enjoyed a Saturday so much – oh hang on, I can – it was 22 November 2003 when JW kicked the winning drop goal against Australia to win the World Cup

A sod is removed

Lots of pretty red lines to work with – surely I can’t go wrong!

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After our long two year lead-in to this project, the first sod is cut in ‘anger’, actually Ian (it is Sunday, so Snowdrop gets his Sunday name!) cut the first one – oddly for one who isn’t a ‘keen’ gardener that he wanted to cut the first bit.  Is this a boy thing methinks!

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Warrener Felix is on hand to check all goes well!
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The first patch is that of Jerusalem Artichokes, not least because they will provide a much needed wind-break – air bases are nothing if not in winding locations!

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The trusty bulb-planted is, in my view, the very best way to plant things such as Jerusalem Artichokes and spuds….more on spuds to come….
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Starting on the spud patch…I planted a sack of First Early (slightly lateish) Swift spuds
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I balanced on the gate (don’t tell the Boss!) to take this shot of the patch…there is still much to do but, oh my, HAPPY DAYS!!

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I am the first to get up on the patch and start digging – many more are on the way.  Then we have the lovely stuff of sorting the BBQ, wild-flower planting, insect hotels etc to sort.

If you are reading this would you please leave me a comment as I som etimesfeel as though I’m talking to myself

The staff of life – compost bins

Work starts on the all-important compost bins.

When you consider there are 16 plots at 15m x 5m, that is one heck of a lot of turf to be composted and that is before we even break into the actual hard-core growing of veg!

I’m thinking of all that wonderful loam – assuming we are still here to utilise it – a gardener is nothing if not very optimistic!

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Guard dog Honey is on standby
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You hold it Dad, I’ll hit it – hold it steady now!!
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And the first of many bays finished
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Not only a fence

…but a gate too *happy face*

Kitchen Gardens, Henlow are well underway now.

We are assured that by Friday the plots will all be marked out.  Then it is over to each of the plot holders to cut their turf, husband has been booked, Jerusalem Artichokes are waiting in the bag to get cracking and make like a wind-break.

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There is much to discuss …..

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I do hope the workmen remove their vans before finishing the fence!

And we’re orf…..

After two years the ‘kitchen garden’ project on camp is finally underway.  The first posts went in this morning – soo happy 🙂

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My ‘Boss ‘ holding up the post 

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‘May I have this dance Sir?’

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I appear to have become a post-hugger!

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So it’s all systems go now and we should be in and cutting turf by the end of the week – hopefully!

The site will hold 16 plots at 15m x 5m each, of which 12 have already been taken – excellent. I can’t wait for the opening day barbie 

Rugby stopped play!!

Whilst I’m a totally passionate garden, some things just have to come before it – today’s thing was the England France 6 Nations match – we (England!) won but not by a long chalk!!

So I had this morning up until 1430hrs to work the land – it was almost enough – I say almost because there is never enough time to spend on garden and allotments is there!

The pea shoots sown two weeks ago are showing good signs of life, they will very soon be dressing my salads – yum

I realise the small salad growing station in the garden currently looks like a graveyard with all the white ‘headstones’ but over the years if I’ve learnt anything it is to label! Salad leaves and radish are putting on good growth, this will soon put an end to buying supermarket salad for the foreseeable.

Other sowings today were:
Carrot Parmex – Peas Ceresa – Beetroot Detroit Crimson Globe – Radish French Breakfast – Spring Onion Apache – Chives
That’s a fair amount of sowing and growing in a small 1m x 2m bed don’t you think 🙂

I’m giving Sweet Pea Snoopie a go this year, these are small 12” non-climbing peas, which according the blurb says they are good for ground cover, I’m unsure yet whether to use them as ground cover or use them in a hanging basket.  I shall report back on their performance later in the year.

A hint of colour to ease me into Spring

Despite a dull Saturday afternoon, mostly spent watching rugby (not dull!), I managed to find some inspiring colour in the garden today – not bad for the second week of March!