Monday, February 23, 2009

Give peas a chance

The change of weather in the last few weeks has been remarkable. The big freeze gave way to flooding roads in Herts and Essex but now there's no sign of either. A new burst of growth has sprung forth thanks to the milder days and nights - you can almost taste the spring in the air. The vibrant red of the forced rhubarb is startling against the drab brown earth; the bright green shoots of the garlic seemingly appearing from nowhere. 
We're shortly to have building work starting on the house, which necessitates the relocation of 2 huge water butts. Since they will not be re-connected to downpipes until early summer (and we're predicted a bit of a hot one this year), I've been getting very nervous about the prospect of having no water available for the plot. So, we spent what seemed like hours transferring water, one bucket or watering can at a time, from one butt to another. Gradually emptying one, then moving it up the garden and refilling it...and repeated this with a second. I'm sure our neighbours think we're mad - it must have looked like some kind of back yard 'It's A Knockout!'.
But back to the veg report: broad beans approx 3-6 inches high - some kind of support will be needed soon; the garlic is going great - 11 of 12 cloves planted are racing ahead; and the weather was so good that I was able to plant out the purple podded pea seedlings. These have been seeing out the last few weeks in the greenhouse swaddled in bubble wrap. And they look great on it!

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