24 August 2008


Spring seems to be springing up on us again. Comfrey is making new leaves, Apple trees are blossoming, and various birds are growing their mating plumage.

Time to get a-planting! Sowed trays of Tomatoes -- 14 varieties, despite my solemn promise to myself to focus on fewer varieties this year -- and Chillis -- 10 varieties so far, but I still have to sow the "large quantities wanted" varieties: JalapeƱo, Serrano, Cherry and Habanero.

Also managed to get some Squashes into the ground, in a bed close-by where I can cage and guard them closely against the dread Pumpkin Flies -- If I can just get 2-dozen undamaged squashies off that lot we'll be set for a year's supply. Black Futsu and some anonymous Japanese-origin winter squash already planted; must still get come Butternuts and Gems (Acorn Squash) into the ground. According to local weatherlore, I'm 10 days late with Squash sowing! Summer Squashes will come and go as space and fancy permits. Cucumbers will have to share space with the Grapevines and Granadillas -- I don't have the time to give them their own dedicated space.

I'm also way behind on compost making, so its going to be a chaotic and challenging season this year. Mostly due to my being chained to a desk this year. Though its been good for the bank-balance, I'm very glad relieved beyond belief that my contract comes to an end on Monday and I can gleefully fire the bunch of halfwits I've been working for, and get back some balance and garden time.

Sorted out the Lettuce seed stock, so now I have a clear idea of which Lettuce varieties need propagating-up to get the volumes healthy. It's pretty challenging keeping 16 varieties of Lettuce all going at once.

Sadly the Mangels I was growing for seed (they're biennial, so need two years to produce seed) were taken out by Rats during the Winter. Fortunately I still have enough seed to start again.

Mustn't forget to sow Basil, Lemon Basil, Parsley, Coriander, Bok Choi, Tatsoi (sp?), sundry Cabbage Tribe, get some Sweet Potato runners,... oh! and beans for drying are wanted in Significant Measure this year. It is not very difficult to get self-sufficient in Beans for a year, even though I like Beans (A Lot!) as they're such a trouble-free crop. Not to mention that, last time I checked, prices for dried Beans and Lentils were over 150% higher (globally!) than last year. Then, too, I'm keen to try my hand at growing Sorghum for feeding to the chooks.

Lots of work ahead to get beds prepared... that old Spring Panic again!

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