The garden has been a forgotten place over the last few weeks as we dealt with more pressing issues, so it was good to finally get my hands back into the earth and see what could be salvaged. It all seemed very disheartening as I looked around, but then, under a jungle of weeds, I found the strawberry plants growing away nicely - a good start. After some vigorous but therapeutic weeding and mulching, it began to look more like my garden. The alliums are providing bright pops of colour in the flower bed, but the weeds have begun reclaiming the empty spaces again. One step at a time though... and at least we are able to harvest some of the autumn sown produce. Yes - it is garlic scape time again! I picked a few tender scapes and we roasted them along with some Scottish asparagus - delicious. I also dug up the shallots and hung them to dry in the sunshine.
Son, Kenneth, and his partner, Louise are here this week and have been such a great help. Among other things, they removed some redundant fencing, that bordered the vegetable plot. It has really opened up the space and makes access so much easier - it should help with improving the drainage too. I was quite surprised to see that is almost three years since we first put that fence up...
I had planted a lot of seeds in the polytunnel and they were doing so well, but then were left to their own devices while we were away. Of course the weather changed and there was a lot of sunshine, so most of them didn't survive. Its a pity, because it would have been no bother for one of my neighbours to chuck a watering can around every couple of days, but it kind of slipped my mind at the time. Anyway - not all was lost - the broad beans look very strong and will go out into the bed soon, the tomatoes have made it, and most of the peas are ok. It's not too late to start again, either; already new trays of kale, broccoli and salads have been filled, and more seeds will be sown directly into the beds.
Do you like my new plant labels? Every year I fail badly at labelling seed rows and trays, and spend too much time scouring the garden looking for fallen plastic labels, struggling to read the disappearing writing, and trying to remember if those seedlings should go in the flower bed or with the salads. I collected lots of razor clam shells (spoots) on one of our beach visits, and thought they would be ideal for the job - big enough to see in the raised beds, sustainable, and pretty too. I used a laundry sharpie to write the plant names, so hopefully that will survive the Hebridean weather.
Happy gardening xxx