Saturday, July 14, 2007

The Thousandth Post

As in every gardening season, I suspect, since Adam delved and Eve span, there was some good news and some not so good. The potatoes, as I suspected, had relished the rain. We dug some First Earlies, and relished them. The courgettes were less happy – they must have missed the sun – but we’ll have plenty in August. Courgettes are much more fun to grow than to eat, anyway.

Carrots promise well, beetroot disappoints. And so forth. There was no sign whatsoever of rocket (arugula) or kale, the veritable garter stitch of vegetable growing. I suspect slugs rather than rabbits. I don’t think rabbits have been back to my little enclosure, and anyway rabbits don’t like rocket very much. Too peppery for them.

Here is my “raised bed” with which I continue delighted. The empty-seeming squares have been re-sown largely with salad stuff, their previous contents either eaten or despaired of. A square foot of spinach is just right for lunch for two.

The opium poppies have turned up. They find empty, cultivated soil as unerringly as pussy cats do. I always leave a few for next year's seed, but I don't think I need worry. They'd be here anyway. They look just like the poppies in pictures of Afghani farmers with their proud moustaches, but I've never had any luck extracting heroin. The magazines say that British poppies don't get enough sun to develop any -- but they would say that, wouldn't they?
The picture shows them among the broad beans.

I scarcely knit while we were there. I’m moving, slowly, down the second sleeve of Ketki’s gansey. I found it sort of tough, the tight circle and the tight gauge. Maybe it’s time to switch to two circulars.

Back here, last night, I turned the first corner of the melon stole.

The modest pile of post included no knitting magazines, but did bring the July Yarn Yard Club offering. It’s based on the colours of Natalie’s strawberry bed this time. It’s time for me to sign up again, as I will do. I can’t go on much longer; I’ve fallen well behind, and soon there will be no room for the yarn. But for the moment, I can’t bear the thought of a new month with no blue package.

The new Knitting magazine – I didn’t give up on it, after all – has a plug for QueerJoe on its recommended-blogs page, and I had the great pleasure of being the one to tell him. I’ve never seen a plug for Franklin on such a page, although I cannot imagine that anyone who reads knitting blogs at all doesn’t read Franklin. Editors must be scared of Dolores.


  1. Well done! You've got 748 posts on me. I'm very jealous of your garden, though life gives me little enough time to rest as it is these days.

  2. Congrats on 1000! The garden looks just lovely. Poppies don't like me at all. I've tried them a number of times and they always die back. Darn.

  3. Janet1:32 PM

    1000 posts - congratulations! And thanks for the recommendation re the Frances Partridge Diaries - that was a few posts ago - I was sorting through some of my books yesterday and lo and behold I found Volume 1 - I read it a few years ago and liked it a lot so I saved it instead of passing it on to the Exchange Book Shop. I happened to find Vol. 6 shortly after you mentioned the Diaries. I'll be on the look out for Vols. 2-5.

  4. It's an old organic farming trick to 'hide' (both by sight and scent) plants that are a favorite to bugs or small animals. The favorite way to hide them is to use a bushy, strong-smelling plant grown driectly alongside. The favorite is usually fennel.

    In Hawaii, the only way to grow beets without them being devoured by bugs is to plant a row of fennel along each side of the row of beets.

    Might be worth a try.

  5. Dawn in NL7:47 PM

    Congratulations on reaching an amazing milestone - 1000 posts! You have built up quite a faithful following in that time, too.

    On to the next 1000!

    All the best,

  6. Donna Wingfield11:35 PM

    Congratulations on 1000 posts! That's quite a milestone. As always, it's fun to see pictures of your garden and to read your accompanying commentary. I've enjoyed your work with the square foot garden this year. It's an interesting idea and seems to be manageable. Do you think that will be your method next year?

  7. Wow! 1000 posts! what an accomplishment! I love reading what you have to say, and I miss your blog when you are out of town.

    I finally started my own blog this week. You suggested that I try it, but I had to wait until summer. You have exactly 997 more posts than I do. I am fairly certain that I will never catch up.
    -Sheila in Michigan

  8. Being scared of Delores argues for the intelligence of knitting magazine editors.