In My Lady Garden
My crack is getting very big
Just look at the size of my crack! It’s getting bigger by the day despite all the showers we had earlier in the season, and I know many of you are in the same situation. I keep worrying that there will be a sinkhole, devouring me, my perpetual spinach, folding chair and bottle of Adnams’ Prosecco.
It is vital that you keep watering the soil at the root of your crops.
And when it does rain, try to get your butt filled. The environmentally-minded are right to tell us to re-use water when we can. I do when washing the lettuce and swishing the slugs off.
But then there’s what they call “grey water”, such as washing up water and bath water. I’m sorry but I don’t want to tip curry-sludge Fairy Liquidated water over my night-scented stocks. Or have my radishes smothered with Avon bubble bath with pomegranate and lily leftovers.
I poured some dishwater in our fountain once and it created more froth than a foam party in a Romford nightclub.
Of course we all have a responsibility to preserve water, which is why my husband and I feel duty-bound to drink alternatives like wine, beer and Aspall Cyder.
In fact, few could do more in that respect, to save the polar bear.
After seeing my crack, I have no doubt the authorities will introduce a hosepipe ban. We’ll all have to hide our hoses, including Olympic water sports people like Tom Daley in their skimpy speedos. The Suffolk Gazette suggested it was wee-wee that turned the water from blue to green at the Olympics. My own view is that it was fake tan chemicals. What a relief that Dale Winton and Donald Trump don’t paddle in the same pool.
It’s a pity that the BBC don’t cover the minority sports. You won’t have heard this anywhere, sadly, but my husband and I got bronze in the Synchronised Dishwasher Stacking. We would have got the Silver but he kept undoing all my efforts. We lost vital seconds as he moved saucers to a different rack, put the knives in the other way round and put the plastic utensils on the top layer. Proud though we were of our medal, we were both left exhausted by the feat and had to retire to different bedrooms with a bottle of beer each.
This week I availed myself of an offer at Lidl, and I urge you to do the same. They had six healthy little lavender plants for £4.59, and a clematis for £8.99, as well as other garden essentials: a whole salami sausage for £1.29, chorizo flavored crisps, extendable loppers at £7.99, and vino rosado at £2.99. At that price you could use it as weed-killer.
I have spent much of the week weeding and hoeing and my shoes split. I discovered AFTER I had trodden on a nettle and had to shove a dock leaf in my loafer in the manner of a spongey Odor Eater. I wouldn’t mind but the shoes had cost me ten quid for two pairs from a Spanish market only 17 years ago. We are living in an age of built-in obsolescence!
With all the weeding, watering and planting, I decided to get a helping hand in my lady garden from gardengigolos.com
I asked for a Poldark scything gigolo but they made a mistake and sent me a bold, dark psycho giggler.
He swept through the long grass on the allotment like a madman with a golf club, laughing his head off maniacally with every swish. I told my husband that I was not very good with the scythe. He replied sardonically: “Nobody was. That’s why they invented strimmers.”
This is the time to plant some more salad seeds. Simply buy packets of butterhead or loose-leaf style lettuce seeds, cress, or little gem or cos. Plant them fortnightly for a constant supply (yuk!) or less often if you prefer chips. As long as the slugs or birds don’t eat your tender seedlings, it is a simple enough job. It’s not rocket salad.
Your Sweetcorn plants (jollyius greengiantum) should be thriving now. When I checked ours on the allotment I thought Boris Johnson, the Foreign secretary, was hiding out there with one of his kids.
Jobs to do this week
* Harvest your beans regularly while they are tender and to encourage fresh growth. They go very nice with pie and mash. Save the water you cooked them in for veg stock.
* Pull out your beetroot. Boil, steam or roast or pickle them like Mrs Beeton.
* Grab the dried seed pods from your Hollyhocks so that you have more Hollyhocks. The knack to this us to grab your stalk with one hand, while pulling off the seed pod downward with a quick CS jerking action. Sprinkle the dried seeds around or save in an envelope marked Hollyhocks as a clue for when you might need them again.
* Prune your shrubs, like lavender and rosemary using your new secateurs from Lidl (£2.49 a pop).
Your problems solved
* Jennifer from Stowmarket: I do believe you when you say you read it in a book, but the majority of us don’t count nettles as perennial vegetables.
* Mr T F from Creeting: No I don’t think it’s a good idea. It’s illegal, and anyway the police helicopter will know you are growing those plants in your HIGHLY lit attic.
* Mr J K from Ipswich: Thank you for sending the photo of your mystery gift (see above). I did a little research and found this is NOT a butt plug from Ann Summers, but a strawberry huller from Lakeland. Have fun with it.
See you next time!