Thursday, May 20, 2010

THREE new followers!

We are safely back, very tired – and the job is done.
The beans have been planted out, the seeds are in. The plastic bottles will afford some protection, not much, against a touch of frost. And against wind, until they get blown away themselves. There are four different types of beans, two climbing, two dwarf. I put in seeds of all four types, as well.

When we left yesterday morning, they had survived three nights in the wild, and were looking fine. And every day brings us nearer to June. Frost in June is entirely possible, but we won’t think about that.

In the nearer of my “raised beds”, you can just see some baby lettuce and pak choi plants which I fell for in a favourite hardware/garden store in Milnathort on the way up. They, too, have survived several days at large. And since baby lettuce and pak choi are like chocolate to slugs, I have some hope that maybe this year the nematodes are doing the job I paid them for.

We ate some rhubarb – and you should have seen what they were asking for “British field-grown rhubarb” in Waitrose last week – and some sorrel soup and some nettle soup. All were delicious. I can’t claim any glory for the nettles. We don’t have many, and our neighbour has a lot, all in the perfection of spring growth, so I pinched some of his.

Peas and broad beans were coming up nicely. Not much else. This year, as well as being the Year of the Bean, is also the Year of the Spring Onion. It is supposed to be easy-peasy, a beginner’s vegetable, but they will NOT grow for me. This time, I have taken advice of the Fishwife – you can’t do better than that – and also have gone in for multiple varieties and successional sowings. Ishiguro and White Lisbon, a red one, Cipollotto da Mazzi from Seeds of Italy (I don’t know what that means), garlic chives, and Siberian bunching onions from Victoriana nursery.

The Siberians and Ishiguros have come up, at least patchily. So the next question is whether they will now just stand around, 1/2” high and fine as a hair, all summer long.

Not much knitting. I finished the back of the Araucania sweater and attached the yarn to the front (it was circular up to the armpits). I realised after a while that I had far too many stitches, and after an interval of anxious calculating, realised that I should have started the front by casting off 11 at each side. I thought the cast off’s I had done for the back counted for both.

Especially since it happened so long ago, and the pattern (Sweater Wizard) was a bit vague about numbers at that critical point. The mistake has been retrieved, and and all is well. Just not very far forward.

Here in Edinburgh, I am casting off in pattern the fourth semi-detached stripe of the Chevron Scarf. I worked on this last night while watching “Let the Right One In”. It is very good, even if you don’t, in general, go in for vampires.


  1. rosesmama11:03 AM

    Welcome back. Did you sow your sorrel or is it volunteer? I had some years ago in a previous house and sometimes ache for that spring flavor.

  2. Welcome back. We have something small nibbling many of our newly leafed out veggies, but can't figure out what.

  3. I was fscinated to see the spring onions named "cipollotto" - that is the Italian. The French word is "ciboulles", and in west Cornwall where I grew up, they were known as "Chibbles". Say them out loud and you can tell they are all the same word.

  4. =Tamar1:39 AM

    I checked that movie out on Google. No thanks, I'll pass.

  5. Let the Right One In is the most subtly terrifying movie I've ever seen. I saw it two years ago at a film festival (have I commented about this here before? ...feeling a sense of deja vu), and I still think about it and shiver. I do not like scary movies. I'm glad that I saw this one, but that's a qualified kind of gladness. What most impressed me was the final (train) scene, and the dawning realization of just what has been going on. On the other hand, perhaps I'm slow, and you figured it out much earlier!

    We got rhubarb in the week's CSA allotment, the first allotment of the season. Think we will stew it and serve atop vanilla ice cream.