The day didn’t go as planned, but that’s not unusual, paradoxically.
I bought bulbs the other day, miniature ones – iris reticulata, species tulips, little daffodils, 4 inches tall, which I planned to plant in the china sinks we filled with alpine plants back in the spring. I thought they’d go rather nicely in the spring and then the alpines would flourish again in the summer. So this morning, I took my trowel and investigated. The soil is completely matted with roots. There’s no question of planting bulbs between them.
I had put quite a lot of bulbs in the rough grass near the house, but few of them remain. I suspect that mice eat them, which is rather bold when you consider how many cats roam around here. I suppose they tunnel. So I thought around the subject – I can’t put the bulbs in the front garden because the muntjac deer would eat them and I want to be able to see them from the house. I thought of the other sinks I have – one is planted with strawberries, but another is empty and I went out to consider where it might go.
It is extremely heavy. I managed to turn it over and found that the plug hole had been filled with concrete, presumably to hold water. So I fetched a stout hammer and bashed at it. It was very loud, I’d have liked to put my fingers in my ears but couldn’t while I was hammering. There’s an echo down around the old mill and it came back to me, and I suspect a lot of people were wondering where on earth the noise was coming from. But I cleared the concrete from the hole successfully and also managed to get the sink on the sack barrow. It was hard work and I was panting and tired out by the time I got it to the edge of the gravel. I had to leave it for a while. In fact, it took me three goes to get it where I’d planned. I’m not entirely convinced of the beauty of it, but it’s too late now, I’m certainly not moving it again, not ever, not nohow, certainly, absolutely and not at all.
It’s filled with compost and I’ll do the planting tomorrow. Honestly, I’m quite relieved not to have given myself a hernia. It was surprisingly hard work to do single-handed.
The other thing I stared on was harvesting the squashes. I have no idea yet how the ones I planted have done. All I do know is that the volunteers, in the bed where the tortoises used to live, have done spectacularly well. I have picked about 30 squashes, and I didn’t even plant them.
I have had a batch of tomatoes drying in the bottom oven of the Aga all day. They’re still not ready, some 14 hours later. I’ve taken them out, I’m too tired, I’ll have to finish the job in the morning.