Saturday’s plan was to make a start on putting up the new greenhouse but the fickle finger of fate intervened as it does. We’d had a frost, our first of the winter, and the weatherman is saying more is on the way. Val decided to bring the hebes (flowery things!) into shelter in case it gets really cold, so they’re sitting under the window in the cowshed.
So, into seed trays as usual but covered with a horticultural fleece, folded loosely into 3 layers. This still allows enough light but shades them from strong sun and should protect them from getting too cold unless we start dropping towards last year’s ridiculous temperatures.
I’ve got Arran Pilot and Rocket, both first earlies and Maris Piper and Desiree which are maincrops. I’m not sure yet if blight is going to be a problem here. Goodness knows we get enough wet weather causing the Smith periods that are ideal for growth of blight fungi but on the other hand, we’re pretty far from other sources of infection.
As a backstop, I’ve ordered some Sarpo Mira and Sarpo Kifli potatoes from Thompson & Morgan which are blight resistant. I’ve also ordered some Setanta from Marshalls which is a new variety supposed to be even better than Sarpo. Well, we’ll see so long as I get the raised beds sorted before planting time!
After a promising start, it managed to cloud over and the wind picked up a bit. One of those lazy winds that goes through you rather than around you. The clouds threatened rain so went onto moving logs from the orchard into the wood store. Ash has a reputation as the best fire wood you can have, you’re even supposed to be able to burn it green. However, as with all wood, the dryer the better for burning. It’s about 30 to 35% on the moisture meter and the ideal is 20%
Actually I could have done with logging the ash a couple of months ago, I’m running down on seasoned wood for the stove and it would be a shame to have to buy in some logs when we’ve so much green wood around the place.
Missing Cat Home!!
I rang Freshfields animal rescue this morning and spoke to Lesley Tarleton who founded the charity. She was so sympathetic and genuine. I’ve met some charity people who seem to be in it for their ego but Lesley is in it for the animals. She offered to try and get the story in the local paper for us to help. So I spent the morning sorting out photos and putting together quotes that they might use about how we were missing her.
Then this evening she just walked in as if nothing had happened. Not even very hungry despite me opening a tin of Gourmet – the really good stuff and only for treats or poorly cats. She took a quick wander around the house and settled in to sleep by the fire. We’re so relieved and happy.