Monday, 21 July 2008

At last - some real gardening

This might not look like much to you, but it is making me very happy. Taking things at a (for me) quite gentle pace, I spent all of Sunday digging over this soil. This section is 11 ft x 5 ft and I refuse to work out how many days it will take to do the whole bed! The soil is much better than I expected, quite loamy, not too much clay and far more worms than I thought would be there.

There are now fewer worms than before I started because I was assisted by two young Robins, one of whom was brave enough to come within 18" of my spade to pick out grubs and worms.

No plans for planting, I probably need to dig it over again to get some of the ivy root I missed, I want this soil to be exposed for a while to give me a chance to pick out whatever weeds germinate over the next few months and to add compost and whatever other soil conditioner I can acquire. Yes, I know there is a tree stump in the middle of it, rightly or wrongly we have taken the decision to leave the stumps to rot where they are. The prospect of removing nearly 50 tree stumps from areas that will eventually be covered by hedging is more than we can face. I am going to drill some big holes to allow more water in to speed up the rotting and convince myself that I am just providing an additional wildlife habitit.

Tomorrow I shall buy a new spade and fork to celebrate. I am currently using a border spade which is (a) too small and (b) getting old - it was a house-warming present 18 years ago so I think I deserve a new one!


  1. Just think of the fungi that can will feast on the decaying stumps, and thus provide food for insects and small mammals to enjoy.

    Even better when your owls discover the smaller mammals (unless you happen to be a small mammal).

  2. And that will be excellent come winter when the aforementioned small mammals decide that life in the garden is a bit on the cold & wet side and that wandering indoors would be a smart idea - NOT - I've had to deal with mice inside before now and do not look forward to a repeat performance (and don't tell me to get a cat, the Hairy One would not approve!)

  3. I almost always use a border fork and spade. They are lighter to use and I find them easier. It's jolly hard to lift a big spade's worth of dirt!

  4. Looking at the amount of digging you have to do over the coming months I think you can more than justify a new fork and spade.


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