Veg Patch

To read the story of my Veg Patch in chronological order use the links in the Blog Archive

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Oh Happy Days..

There is something about gardening and growing plants that makes me feel good.. I stand in my greenhouse looking at all the tiny seedlings , which later in the summer will bring me flowers, vegetables and smiles and it makes me happy. Don't worry I haven't been on the Prosecco  its just spring and I am loving being back in the garden again. 

Every day now there is something to do, seeds to sow, plants that need a bigger pot or , this week, huge piles of broken branches from our neighbours Oak trees to be picked up off my beds and paths. Storm Kate blew through on Monday night but we had very little damage at all. My piles of plastic pots were scattered and my sweet pea tower was leaning at a very odd angle, but that was it. The poor clifftop shelter didn't fair as well. It is directly in line with The Needles, as you can see and there was a 105mph wind recorded. I do hope they replace it as it is nice spot to watch the world go by whilst eating ice-cream.

The greenhouse is full to bursting already and I still have loads to plant and loads of stuff to pot on. As usual the windowsills are also crammed. My bargain Poundland pots have worked really well. thanks Sara Venn for that tip, I hope yours have been as successful.

The Cornflowers  and Ammi are so big now they are outside and I shall be watching the weather carefully for the next couple of weeks to make sure there are no frosts to hurt them. 

The cutting beds are full to bursting with Paper Whites. Some of you may have been recipients of flowers from these actual bulbs if you have ever bought flowers from Georgie at Common Farm Flowers. I traded a days weeding last summer for a huge bag of bulbs she no longer needed. They are popping up all over the place here. 

And never fear, if there is a shortage of tomatoes this coming summer, I think I have grown enough plants to feed most of you.

 Its looking like another lovely day tomorrow so more seeds to sow and more happy hours to spend in the garden. 

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Mothers Day Dig

It may be Mothers Day here in the UK but the Pennington Patch is still in need of attention. This morning we convened a work party to try and dig over the last bed with clumpy grass in it. The last two weeks, considerable progress has been made , without my help I might add, so this morning I set of bright and early to try and do a bit. 

When we took it over, the land was overgrown, bramble ridden and covered in everyone else's rubbish but we have slowly turned it around and I think today we may have got to the point where we can start to think about planting. 

This bed was previously half covered in bramble and overgrown bushes. 

It is our bonus bed as we didn't even know it was there, so we are now planning on putting a bit of veg in here, something we hadn't previously planned for. 

The cutting patch has been turned over beautifully .

And so today the primary objective was to finish turning the soft fruit bed and picking out the horrible couch grass roots. 

It took a couple of hours but finally we had done it, all dug over and ready for the next stage. In fact there was enough time for me to start digging out even more bramble root along the boundary with our neighbours gardens. I hope they are pleased to no longer have all sorts of overgrown stuff hanging into their gardens. 

And at the other end the ladies made a start on clearing another big overgrown area. We are hoping to put a shed in this space.

The lovely bush we rescued from the huge bramble area seems to be grateful and has grown leaves and blossom, we have no idea what it is but think it may be a fruit bush of some sort. Any Ideas? 

So a successful couple of hours and lots of planning ahead to make sure we make the most of this lovely space. 

Friday, 4 March 2016

A busy day at the Flower Farm

The observant amongst you will have noticed that I have a great friend who owns a flower farm and I occasionally go and help her out on busy days. Those of you with even more exceptional observation skills will have noted that this Sunday is Mothers Day, probably the busiest day in a florists calendar. So the combination of the two found me at 7am yesterday morning hoping in the car for the 60 mile trip to Common Farm Flowers in Charlton Musgrove, Somerset. 60 Miles isn't far on good dual carriageways but as I live in the country we don't have many of them, so it was B roads all the way, a very pleasant way to travel. 

I knew from several conversations in the previous week that this year was looking to be Georgie's best ever day for Mothers Day flowers and we were going to be working pretty hard. In anticipation of this, I was carrying supplies in the form of a large Lemon Drizzle cake, there is nothing better than a large mug of tea and a slice of cake to raise the spirits. 

Upon arrival I was greeted by a huge wall of empty cardboard boxes in the studio, and others out in the office. 

I soon learned that my job for the day was to run the "Despatch" department. This involved aqua packing the flowers, attaching all the gift labels, putting flowers in the boxes and making sure all the correct labels were added to the box. Now it sounds simple but its quite a time consuming job and I had 55 boxes to pack . So off we went. 

The studio was full of buckets of the most beautiful Narcissi, Ranunculus and Tulips in all shades and loads of different sorts of greenery. Georgie, Sharon and Tessa were working hard to produce beautiful arrangements. Some were going as bouquets, some were smaller and being packed with jam jar's so the lucky recipient would have 3 Jam Jar posies to enjoy, and yet others were being packed with beautiful handmade chocolates, supplied by a local artisan chocolate business. 

Time for morning tea and cake came round very quickly.

Don't worry we ate the rest of it with afternoon tea. Before we knew it , it was 4pm and I was carrying the last completed box to the huge pile in the dining room. 

It was a lovely day , and what made it even nicer is knowing that as I type this, lucky ladies up and down the UK are receiving their beautiful flowers from loving family members and I went some way to helping put that huge smile I know they will all have, on their face. I am paying the price today though, all that bending means I am as stiff as a board, never mind its getting me back in trim for the gardening season. Time to burn off some of that cake. 

Meanwhile back in Barton, this morning, walking on the beach I noticed that a very large branch had got caught in the boulders of one of the breakwaters. It was standing upright looking like a tree, and it got me wandering where on earth it had come from, I would like to think it has washed across the atlantic from some exotic island in the Caribbean or from the shores of South America. Gibson and I sat looking at it with The Needles as a backdrop for a while contemplating its origins. 

I usually finish with a picture of Gibson but this week, its Teacake the Common Farm Dog who has the final picture slot on the blog, she is a lovely little dog with Kamikaze tendencies,. You always have to drive very slowly and carefully into the yard as she will be playing chicken with you and your car. Have a great weekend and for those of you spending it with your mum have a wonderful time, you never know how long you are going to have her ..