But I have recently recruited a whole new group of fellows, eager to help out, providing their cheer for free and even bringing their own tools with them:
It’s still the quiet, cold time of year — I can’t recall a year with more frosts and snow-on-the-mountain — and gardening is still restricted to weekends. So what have we been up to in the garden?
There’s been very little rain, so we’ve been watering the peas, which have happily re-shot since being pecked off by sparrows. The tinsel must be working:
The garlic is growing strong, though we really must weed out the nettles that are popping up everywhere:
Lemons on my original tree are ripening very slowly, but the fruit this year is the largest I’ve ever had, quite possibly because when we got my new tree, the lady at the nursery shamed me into feeding it more regularly. I love how the bright yellow orbs punctuate the bare garden on a gloomy day:
And we’ve harvested my first broccoli! So tender and slim of stem, it made for a modest pasta dinner that night, along with some anaemic, hairy carrots sown a couple of months ago:
Inspired by Bek, we’ve started drawing up planting schemes for spring. There won’t be any real action until the soil and weather warms up around October, but it was a pleasant evening sorting thru my seeds (why did I save so many marigold seeds? How old are those butternut seeds from dad?) and working out where to put things. The plans we’ll run past dad, to see if we’ve got the rotation thing right.
Otherwise, we are enjoying the first hints of spring:
This is much needed colour for this time of year. My ornamental garden is also slumbering, and I do miss seeing the riot of bright colour that comes in spring. Every year I tell myself ‘this is what winter is’, but it’s no less depressing.
So acid-yellow lemons, yolky jonquils, and red gnomes are just the ticket to make me smile until those long-away warmer, brighter days arrive.
My original gnome, well over ten years old, and a little weather-beaten: