Yesterday’s knitting news, however, such as it was, related to one of those dread cards from the post office which was on the mat when we got back from Strathardle – they had failed to deliver a package, and removed it to a fairly remote local post office for collection. I trudged westward yesterday for no little distance and got it – and it was my order from the Schoolhouse, as I had hoped.
The New Zealand sweater is very interesting – but with no explanation, alas, of why it is so-called. I wonder how it escaped becoming famous? Round-the-Bend has given me a taste for EZ’s engineering; this one is a real contender for Thomas-the-Elder’s electric red sweater. Especially if England don’t win the Rugby World Cup – an appropriate logo would be more successfully incorporated in Jared’s “Brownstone”, I think.
Also in the package were Aino Praakli’s two books, mittens and socks. I discovered to my very considerable embarrassment that I already had the mitten book. There’s no excuse. One of the few things I do right, these days, is enter new knitting books in LibraryThing as soon as they cross the threshold. All I have to do is look there before ordering a new one. The sock book, with a wonderful cross Estonian cat on the cover, sort of makes up for my confusion.
What a curious language Estonian appears to be.
Strathardle and general vegetable-growing
We are famous for our daffodils. If 50 maids with 50 mops were to toil for half a year dividing them, we would have even more.
Here are the bunching onions. They don’t seem to have made much progress in the last six weeks, but they’re clearly alive. I have since read that red-bulbed bunching onions are even hardier and stronger-tasting (I have probably told you that already). I’ve got some seed of that, ready to go for this year.
And some of the walking onions have re-appeared! I didn’t have much hope for them – they went in rather late in the season, and were rather wispy, and then had to contend with what proved to be one of the famous winters. But there they are.
Here you see my dear sorrel, upper right; the Mara des Bois strawberries, looking well; and, lower left, three Good King Henry plants. From memory, chenopodium bonus henricus. It is nearly the perfect vegetable – perennial, hardy, tidy. It used to be very common in cottage gardens. The only drawback is that it doesn’t taste very nice.
My favourite gardening writer, Robin Lane Fox, doesn’t often get around to vegetables in his Saturday column in the Financial Times, but he did yesterday. He gardens near Oxford and has badgers as well as rabbits to contend with. It was from him, long ago, that I learned that rabbits won’t eat courgettes. It is absolutely true. In yesterday’s column he says that runner beans “are of no interest to wildlife”. Sensational news, if true – I shall certainly try.
So far this morning I have replaced paragraph breaks three times -- I will try posting again and see if they can make the leap.