Friday, 27 February 2009

Preparing the Raspberry Patch

...weeds, weeds, weeds...

Some major excavating had to be done to clear the deep, winding and sprawling roots of the brambles. The alien-like bramble roots went all the way down to Hades! Often we'd have to dig 4' down into the orange sand and stoney subsoil following one to its finer hairier ends. Not to mention the couch grass and the nettles. This area perhaps 16' x 8' was the hardest so far. The two of us worked for 13 hours, over a few days to clear it - it's very slow progress. But so satisfying. It's inevitable that we've missed some but I know we have be very thorough.
We squished grubs as we found them like the horrible fat chafer grubs and tough leather jackets. Leaving our favoured fat worms and shiny black ground beetles free reign.
Interestingly, I recently listened to something on Radio 4 about slugs being repelled by ground beetles. Apparently the beetles like to eat slugs! Slugs have been observed rearing up at the ground beetles!! Scientists are experimenting with the scent of ground beetles to create and organic slug deterrent - Now that would be good!!


Frozen ground 6.1.09

I'm sorry to desert my blog for so long..... As it is a diary of Lottie I should run through what's been happening since I last posted. 
I dug another bed next to our seating area. This bed will be for flowers and herbs and for my little under-gardener to practice gardening in. In the picture above you can see the pallet box which I am making in to a cold frame/mini greenhouse, it is sitting on said bed.
Not much happened in December except I forgot to plant garlic on the shortest day! - so the experiment I was planning - plant on the shortest, harvest on the longest day - will have to wait another year.
January was cold and the ground was frozen hard (as above) so digging was suspended. I did manage to get some free turf from a job so we have a little grassy patch alongside the shed - which looks a little silly at the moment within the chaos but shall be our little spot of sanctuary soon.