My efforts on Friday rendered me exhausted, so an early night was had. Getting up yesterday, the sun was shining, melting the frost that had developed overnight but the Radio 4 weather forecast warned of rain later in the day. A quick breakfast and it was on with the work clothes to get out and finish off the front garden borders.
This time, I was armed with an edger which my dad produced from his garage. Using two wood pegs and some string I marked out my straight edge and got slicing – boys! what a difference it made. Although I had managed on Friday with the shovel, I can’t entirely claim the first widened border has a straight edge, perhaps more gently scalloped. But there was no messing with the edger, the second effort is as straight as a die!! As the day went on, the my speed at the backbreaking work of wheelbarrowing turf and topsoil really did slow. But, by midafternoon, just as the rainclouds threatened, it was done!
All that was left then, was to quickly plant in a tree peony that I had received that morning from Thompson and Morgan (did they know I was getting my borders ready?). I’m not convinced the front garden is the absolute best spot, as although it gets lots of sun, it also catches a fairly sharp wind which apparently tree peony’s aren’t too keen on. However, the back garden isn’t so sunny and also is chaos at the moment so it was pretty much ruled out off the bat. To try and make the best of it, I planted it in the lee side of the sandstone gate pillar, so hopefully that should offer it some protection. We’ll see.
After all that, it was another early night last night.
As for today, Monty Don, in his Sunday Times Magazine article, said this was the time to prune blackcurrant bushes. Since I don’t have one but my mum does, I took the secateurs to hers. This wasn’t an entirely selfless act of caring for her plants. I also decided to pot up all the cuttings in the hope that by the summer, there are another 10 blackcurrant plants, which I might keep one of. Maybe two. To pot them I put some slate in 10″ pots filled the bottom half with top soil and the top half with compost then just pushed the cuttings in. I believe (or at least my mum tells me) that this should be enough for some of them to survive and root into plants and since she is rarely long, it could be a bumper crop of blackcurrants for next summer!