Seemingly endless rain and gales meant that a lot of garden preparation did not happen over the past three months. The ground was just too wet to get onto. I hate to say it but we actually need a bit of rain now – the ground is getting dry and undug areas are cracking on the surface. But the current situation has allowed me to do some of the necessary work. I have hundreds of plants in pots, some brought from my last home, that have been in pots too long and really need to be planted out. So the past two days have involved some time sorting two beds. These were kept weed free for the past two years, partly through being sprayed but also by covering in cardboard and grass clippings (you end up with a lot of card after fitting an IKEA kitchen).
These two beds are where I planted some fruit trees. The apples are planted down the main drive so here are plums, pears and cherries. There are 11 trees, three pears, two cherries and six plums. The proportion of plums to pears does reflect which I like more, but also the diversity of plums. There is, as always a hiccough, because the nursery I ordered the fruit from confused my order for apple ‘Maribelle’ with plum ‘Mirabelle de Nancy’ – they offered both and I ordered the apple and got the plum. I will cope with it. I would plant more cherries since I like them the most, but they are big trees and, from experience, know that birds are better at picking them than me.
The trees were planted a year ago though two of the plums were originally planted for a year on my allotment then dug up and kept for two years in a pot and then planted out – and they are doing OK!
Anyway, I have a lot of iris that are also suffering in pots and I wanted to put these in these beds so I had to tackle this job. First I had to cut away the edge and then dig the beds over. I have not been able to get the delivery of compost I needed for this, or my timber for the raised beds, so I have just been digging the soil over, as deeply as possible and will add a bit of compost when I plant but I am going to have to mulch the beds and hope that, since the soil is now broken up, the worms will do the rest.
Anyway, it was a bit of a slog but I finished by tea time last night and they look much better. Now all I have to do is get those plants in before it rains later today.