Tag Archives: flooding

Pops, the poop pile and the plot

popspoopone  popspopptwo

Having found out where the local stables where, I asked pops if he would help in getting some poop to put in the raised beds. The stable is very local, a few minutes down the road; it is home to 18 ponies and horses that for one reason or another their former owners couldn’t cope with. When we went this morning, there were already riding lessons happening for the local children.

I had been advised of this place only this week; and looking at the plot, felt I had to make a start on filling the raised beds. There are 12 raised beds, and these will need filling if they are to made use of. Today, pops and I filled 12 rubble bags mostly full of rotted down horse manure. This is manure that is trusted; it has been there for many many years, and the ‘lotment neighbours have used it for many years. Compared to a retail prices, where one bag would cost approximately £5, this was a bargain! Pops actually did all the hard work, I must say that there was a technique to his digging.

As it stands, I think we have enough to put into but not fill 6 bags. I will most likely have to make a return visit after the festive season. The pile is huge, but i don’ think I am about to take it all! It will have to be slow and steady in filling the beds. These are beds that already contain leaf mold. So I don’t expect the beds to be filled entirely

The bags were positioned on the plot. We’d wheel barrowed them all to the car; and then had to make two trips to pick it up. The plot that is still very very boggy. The ice that has covered it has thawed greatly, returning the massive great big puddles. Still a shame, but one must keep plodding on

Don’t worry, pops has been brewed a cuppa as part reward, the rest would be to actually grow stuff. He hurts, and so do I!

yours in anticipation

Horticultural Hobbit

Puddly, pools, paddle boat?

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152285376605313&set=vb.186302798085870&type=3&permPage=1

Walked down to the plot today, just to see what difference a couple of days had made if at all. Needless to say, it hasn’t. It was dry today, or at least I think it was; the little that I saw of the day having been inside for the most part. All that is missing really, is perhaps a couple of gold fish, a frog, a rubber ducky. Watching the news as I speak, the newsanchor suggests that the precipitation will continue into next week and there is possibility of the white stuff also descending. Well, they always say that at this time of the year. Apparently, 93mm of rain fell over the weekend. That would make sense, given the level of water that seems to be just sitting there on the plot. This flooding business may only get worse.. The wendy house, a former shadow of itself, stands there all skeletal looking. I would just it to be dry for a spell. Dry. I don’t mind cold. But dry, and lack of precipitation perhaps.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152285382160313&set=vb.186302798085870&type=3&permPage=1

I’ve attached the links as I have yet to figure out how to put videos and things in. It is somewhat perilous just getting to the plot. The red wellingtons squelched some what in making my way to the plot. As you get closer and closer to plot 2a, the surface underfoot becomes muddier and muddier. It is difficult to stop sliding around and not ending up one’s backside. I met another plot holder as I left. He had a story to share, given how I had shared my excess of onion sets with him. He had sunk them, as you do. Only for evil squirrels to dig them up, bite the bottom and then rebury them. This is apparently what the critters do with acorns and such like.

When it comes to my own plot; something is growing. Something has sent up some green shoots. There are a couple of green shoots belonging to broad beans. Easily recognisable with the big, wrinkly leaves and stout shoot. The shoots of the onions and garlic are quite slender in comparison. All is not lost, just a bit of it. Perhaps some rescuing could be done in the Spring. Though this spring, putting in onions at the point didn’t really work; or the onions for that matter. Even so, it was from the spring that we had the start of this years miserable freak weather. The sogginess is just as demoralising as not having a productive plot. I have been advised to move; but I really don’t want to. Having worked so hard on this one, I’d like to see all that hard work pay off.

Sat at home, is the pot grown Reuben Blackberry. Hardy as it may be, I’m not sure about sinking it into wet clay. In addition, raspberry canes are expected at some point. Have invested in a pot making device; you know the sort, the little wooden things that you wrap newspaper around.

Yours in anticipation,

Horticultural Hobbit

Carnage, chaos, Courage canned.

What day was it now? Thursday. The day that the heavens opened, the sceptred Isle saw a nation wide band of precipitation cut a swathe through the land. It is still going today, it may well be a different system actually. I forget now, incensed as I am.

And why, am I so angry? Below is the reason why. I wandered down this morning, me, my red wellingtons. Dad’s words that I should at least change into my scruffy jeans before I go, ringing in my ears. I fully anticipated it not to be there. I envisaged,  that the Wendy house would actually be half way across hobbitland and require fishing out from somewhere. It was still there. In dire shape, and in several pieces.  The broom handles-not quite the two ronnies, I know-were still there. One lay, looking rather sorry for itself behind the wendy house. The others needed rearranging a little. It didn’t take too long, to right the wendy house. It’s big enough, it towers over me a little. Trying not trip, fall and land in the mud, I did manage to pull it up. It’s not sitting firm, but sitting as squarely as it can. Tomorrow, there is a further deluge predicted. So it may well end up keeled over yet again.

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The contents have been entirely disgorged. it was never organised in the first place. So that was tidied up a little. Have moved the bag of compost, and will probably store that in Dad’s shed over winter so that it remains dry. The cover itself, it torn to ribbons. Shredded completely. There are serrated edges, that would suggest the elements have savagely gnawed at it. Chomped on, chewed up, and then spat out. Thankfully, there is a second cover that is somewhere in Dad’s shed. I won’t be putting it on just yet. This wendy house has given me nothing but grief since it first arrived!

With the further onslaught from the elements expected, the state of the plot leaves a lot to be desired. That said, on close inspection, green shoots-not many, mind-were observed. Most likely garlic or onions, perhaps the odd spring bulb. However, that means not an awful lot. All those onions, shallots, garlic and tulip bulbs planted are now most likely a write off. There a few bits of shallots that are sat in dad’s shed; I didn’t get around to planting them last month, and space was getting short.

There are puddles every where, and they are only going to get deeper. Other than stand there with a bucket, I’m not entirely sure how it is all going to drain away. The chances of a dry winter are not worth taking a gamble on at all

Yours in anticipation,

Horticultural Hobbit

Puddles, perils and Puzzlement

Dear Mother Nature, what exactly is one playing at? Look what you have done now!

We’ve had blistering and balmy days earlier in the year, followed by Olympic sport type rain. The situation does not appear to be changing any time soon. As such, it is hard to not be demoralised and despondent. The productivity of this year has left a lot to be desired. With the exception of garlic, onions and shallots, not a lot else has come off. In autumn, at least there is an opportunity to get an early start. With overwintering, it’s a bolt on to whatever you might grown in the spring or summer. Arguably, it can be risky. Especially, if as now, the weather throws you all the curved balls it can muster.

Image Am tempted to get a metre stick, and see just how deep these puddles are. I really would, though the worry is, that I fall in, and will have difficulties coming back out again.

Donned the red Wellingtons this morning, to survey the damage done by the over night deluge. A deluge, that has in fact been passing over the sceptred for the last few days. Above and below is the sight that I was met with. Submerged, soggy and really quite slippery under foot. It was a mission to get there, with the path leading up to the plot very boggy. It was not high heel wearing terrain! The half plot is right at the end of the site, and for some time was very unloved. What is evident, is that drainage not just on the plot, but also on that section of the site is an issue. Mine is not the only plot to be somewhere under water.

Image The raised beds are there, in the hope that in being raised; there is a reduced risk of flooding. The ground that does remain, is however going to be sodden. GYO-ing is then severely handicapped. As it stands-the water anyway!-it is difficult to ascertain whether things are drowned, dead and defunct. With the sheer volume of standing water, the persistent precipitation, and the fairly erratic weather; the likelihood is that the clay is going to eat anything and everything. This time last year, it was much drier. The overwintering garlic shallots, onions and even broadbeans had been sown. They were starting to send up shoots. This year, a few had been starting to grow shoots. With the mud and water, any of these are now a little difficult to see.

In the cold light of autumn and winter, the plot does look miserable. The one light at the end of the tunnel, would be that by Spring, there could be change. If there is drier weather between now and then, the greedy clay may not get fed so much. This year. as a first year allotmenteer, has been challenging. It is not just hobbitland, a vast majority of gardeners have faced the same adversities and challenges. And with that, it is no good being morose and defeatist. This year, all being well, has been a fluke. The product of freak climatic conditions.

Let’s just hope the water drains!

Yours in anticipation,

Horticultural Hobbit