… in three days.
On Monday, my bedroom was 13 degrees. I slept in pyjamas and socks under two duvets with a hot water bottle.
On Tuesday, it was 14 degrees. I took my socks off and forewent the hottie.
Wednesday, I slept in a t-shirt. It was 17 degrees.
Last night it was 20 degrees in there and I’ll be getting rid of the duvets at this rate.
Talk about a super-rapid warm-up!
It’s been sweaty hot. It didn’t help that I went outside to do the hoeing and the digging at 10:30 yesterday and didn’t come in until 12 – and then I went out, like a mad dog, in the midday sun. I mean, it wasn’t sunny, and I was fully liquid-filled, but it was 34 degrees by the time I went to the bank at 2pm. I looked like a sweaty fiend to do the shopping and my afternoon appointments. This is why Skype is good. I don’t have to be a sweaty fiend in real and I can just clean my face up and know that nobody can smell me.
But… it’s all looking good. The potatoes are good and healthy, this year – not all withered and yellow like last year after the amazingly dry April and May. Beetroot, carrots, onions, peas, broad beans and radish are also coming along well.
So what have we got in, vegetable-wise? Onions, beetroot, carrots, radish and pak choi are all in the littlest plot. The onions are to keep the carrot fly off. Plus, I work a five-bed rotation, so these are on last year’s tomato patch. It’s a good thing to break up the planting, plus it looks pretty.
Patch two is this year’s potatoes – and much healthier they are as well.
And the patch is remarkably weed-free. Mainly this is due to excessive hoeing. I’m a hoe-maniac. This was also the patch that had compost and manure to enrich it.
The big, giant patch is half-planted. It’s got two rows of broad beans – can’t get enough of the broad bean! – and two rows of peas. There’s also space for corn to go in with the peas – whenever they might be ready. I’ll use the pea stakes to put a protective net over them. The turnips, some broccoli and more beans are waiting to go in. I’m going to plant a row of borlotti beans today – they’re my favourite, bar Soissons beans. I’d already planted a row, but they weren’t up for the cold and they haven’t fared well, so I’ve been digging the space over.
I’ve also been planting out my very tired cabbages and leeks. They’re all going in alternate rows in the small patch – winter crops. Again, the alliums with the brassicas – hopefully, they should keep pests away from each other.
The final patch has only got some very small tomatoes in it. They’ve been really slow this year because of the cold and the damp. It means a shorter season, which is a shame. Last year, I bagged up so many plum tomatoes and froze them that we’re still eating them. I love my freezer.
This year, I want to bottle a few and make tomato paste for canning – I’m always worried what will happen when the freezer gives up!
So, it’s off out I go to get weeding, digging, hoeing and planting. Planning the hay whilst the sun shines.