Since writing about coming out of hibernation last week I could quite easily have headed back to bed this last week and not surfaced. The temperature dropped below freezing and we woke to a light covering of snow on 2 mornings and frozen hail on a third, none of which puts me in the mood to garden. BUT, having posted my polytunnel to do list last week and concious that time waits for no man or woman, I ignored the call of the warmth and got on with that list. "How did you get on?" I hear you ask. Well ...
- Clear dead plants - YES
- Weed through onions and other crops -YES
- Water sparingly as necessary- YES
- Manure cleared areas, dig in and water- YES
- Tidy up cold frame- YES
- Tidy work station- YES
- Set up my new min-max thermometer - NOT YET
- Clear the central path - NO
- Wash the polytunnel plastic - NO
- If the weather permits sow mangetout, spring lettuce, broad beans - TOO COLD
- Keep harvesting what's in there - calvolo nero, chard, parsley, oriental greens - YES
|Most of that "stuff" is now out away in my working station|
|A much tidier polytunnel than I had last week!|
|Weeded onions behind cleared and manured soil|
|A tidy work station next to my broad beans|
You know what, I'm pretty pleased with what I've achieved and as the weather is set to be less cold over the next few days I may well get those seeds sown. I also went through my seed stash, chucking out those which don't keep well and starting to decide what to grow this year.
I still have no idea what was munching my chard except to say, it is now us (very yummy it was too) and it looks like very soon we will be eating one of my all time favourite vegetables - Purple Sprouting Broccoli. Usually this is ready much later as I don't plant a very early variety, preferring to have it crop in March when other winter veg is finishing. Looks like Mother Nature has different ideas this year.
|Purple Sprouting Broccoli|
Despite the frost and snow my brave English marigold is still flowering and there is even a new flower bud. I'd like to think I've managed to grow the first frost-hardy, winter flowering marigold that will make me my fortune but as I have seen others around locally, I suspect it is more to do with the overall mild weather than a freak of genetics. Oh well, back to the drawing board then!
|English Marigold - Calendula vulgaris|
Other signs of Spring are out there too. Catkins are dancing in the breeze, reminding me of lamb's tails and bluebells and orchid leaves are peeping through the cold soil. The snowdrops are in flower under the hedge and those daffodils I planted so late last year are just peeping through. Winter may yet bring us his worst weather but Spring is stirring.
|Leaf whorls of Early Purple Orchids - Orchis mascula|
How has your gardening week been or are you still hibernating? Annie from Mammasaurus was in Poland so I am hopeful for garden pictures from there this week on How Does Your Garden Grow.