Friday, 16 April 2010

Dirty fingernails - at last

That manicure is not going to happen now. The days are longer, the temperature a few degrees warmer and the sun, comfortably clearing the rooftops by mid-morning, is now bathing both my little north-facing garden and the work allotment for a good portion of the day. My hands are in and out of the soil as much as possible: in the morning, in between sips of coffee - a little tweak here and there; at lunchtime in between meetings, pushing beetroot seeds and beans into the raised beds; in the evening, before I've even put my key in the front door, I'm pinching out spent blooms from my windowbox, and then I can't help but tuck a few new seeds into a pot before dinner. So a manicure would be a poor investment.
This week in the garden my husband has made progress recycling our old slate bathroom floor into hard landscaping; the attic bathroom has been converted into my spring greenhouse (no more guests for a while); I have been rediscovering plants that I'd either forgotten or thought would never survive the winter; been reminded which tulip bulbs I planted as they come into flower (Aladdin's Record); and  moved oversized shrubs to give me more growing space. This last is long overdue and I feel so much better for opening up the congested borders. Although the dog thinks it's an invitation to rampage through my plants, so I must fill the gaps soon: I will add scent, taste, colour and texture - new plants will have to earn their keep.

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