Farewell to the Spring Cabbage Patch

Spring is with us and the cabbages have flooded into the kitchen leaving a sad looking cabbage patch and foliage too rubbery, too rotten to make their way into preserving but great for compost. There are weeds to clear and a pair of willing hands to get involved with the process, those willing hands are Little D's and we notice straightaway that his beloved spade is now too small for him and Andrew's is way to big for him. So, Little D becomes the spotter of weeds, the carrier of weeds and Witchfinder General of weeds: 'You missed one! Compost it!'

children, gardening

We start with a bed which isn't that weed filled as it has been in prior years. Showing that previous additions of manure, compost and mulch have done the job. The weeds come up easily and the lamb's sorrel is now fading under the constant bombardment of garden compost and lime. Lamb's sorrel is a lover of farmland soil, lover of the acidic and this is the first signs our soil is slipping toward the alkaline thanks to additions of green manure over winter.

weeding, gardening

The soil is also lovely and friable. This isn't surprising, this part of the garden had all the old turf stacked here and it rotted down into lovely loam and the soil which was once a few inches before you hit sandstone is now around twelve inches deep in parts and a fork slides easily into it. If you could, you'd spread it on your toast and call it chocolate spread.

weeding, when to weed

The weeding by the cordon apples and pears is overseen by Little D, here small yanking hands push beside our hands to get to grass and he mutters, hums his way down the row and after one hour the bed is clear and ready. Then the little sod decides to dance on it.

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