Monthly Archives: March 2012

Field Mouse, Potato

26th March 2012 – At Allotment Plot 326, Ella Montt removed items that were cluttering up the shed and in doing so disturbed a Field Mouse habitat. A Mouse exited the shed in the bottom of a big tub that had drainage holes around its base, after a few moments hesitation the Mouse escaped from the tub by squeezing through one of the holes. Then the Mouse ran across the Plot and disappeared down a hole next to the netted area of over wintered cabbage plants. Ella Montt had discovered many Mouse network holes across the Plot. She much preferred the Mice to larger rodent creatures.

Ella Montt moved the patterned carpet and repositioned it so that she had access to the soil next to the Broad Beans, Onions and Garlic. The soil was dug over. The left arm of the digger had suffered a fracture in December 2011 and was not as strong as it had been prior to this happening; battle with bramble rhizomes was now more difficult. Covering the soil whilst not in plant production was necessary to thwart bramble invasion. Ella Montt planted some more Broad Bean seeds. The seeds seemed vibrant and ready for growth activation. Parsnip seeds were planted next to the Broad Beans.

Plot 326’s soil was starting to crack, because of lack of rain. The pile of apple tree branch wood had dried to tinder. Ella Montt repositioned the woodpile, so that she could fold back the ground cover beneath it to examine the soil, which had been covered over the winter. The soil was ready for planting, so the covering was replaced to wait for the planting activity to commence. It was essential that the soil was not left uncovered, because the heat from the sun would evaporate any moisture contained with in it.

Seeds Planted: Broad Bean Hangdown Green 1 row x 10 seeds; Parsnip Halblange White 3 rows (an unspecified amount of seeds).

29th March 2012 – Allotment Plot at MERL’s soil was starting to harden. Ella Montt forced a hand fork in to the ground and finished planting the row of EKB Peas. Non-human wildlife is eager to find food so any germinating seeds that rise from the soil when the plot is unattended, will be at great risk and will probably be eaten before the plants have time to mature. One frost damaged Globe Artichoke plant had survived from last year and was starting to revive.

The sky was blue and cloudless apart from the trails from aeroplanes. The temperature was pleasantly warm, almost like a summer day, however it was still March. On the Island, Human purchases of Water Butts were reported to be up by 800%, yet there was still no rain to fill the Butts. At another location water was saved after utensil cleaning activity to be deposited on the soil surrounding plant life in the garden.

Ella Montt took the garden fork and removed some of the dried plant material from the Brick Composter and placed it in the wheelbarrow. The plant material had yet to fully decompose, because lack of moisture was preventing this. EB stepped out of the reading room window and joined Ella Montt at the Plot. Together they dug the soil over and made trenches for potatoes to be planted in the Plot. The Potatoes were placed in the ground. Ella Montt used the garden spade to shovel the new soil from the Brick Composter on to the Plot to cover the newly planted Potatoes. EB earthed the Potatoes up. The remaining dried plant material was emptied from the wheelbarrow back in to the Brick Composter. Ella Montt fetched the watering can and watered the Plot. EB stepped back in to the reading room.

Seeds Planted: Pea (Edible Podded) Ezetha’s Krombek Blaschokker x 30 seeds; Potatoes Lady Balfour Main Crop Potato x 15.

Harvest: a pinch of Chives.

March, almost without Precipitation

In the human settlement of Reading, the month of March 2012 was without Precipitation apart from on the 4th March. Even before the month was over it was possible for Ella Montt to gaze in to the crystal ball and see that the forecast contained no evidence that Precipitation would occur in that time period. The weather was and is beautiful. The temperatures seem perfect, yet a paradox exists, and within the paradox sits the object that is Global Warming. The object is almost a phenomenon, but at the same time it is still an object, a living, vibrant object, pulsating in a galaxy amongst other stars and planets. The humans, who existed within the object, were vigilant to extend the object so that Global Warming could continue on its path. The Warming that produced the pleasurable temperatures and dryness of March had the power to seduce the human population. Desirable sunshine mellowed each day as it passed. Some of the humans did not notice the Warming, because they existed in the state of mellow seduction and could not sense the dryness of the soil or the moisture levels receding.

1st March 2012 – Allotment Plot 326 – Ella Montt continued to cover the soil with processed tree products to act as a barrier mulch to decrease moisture evaporation. Leeks and a Parsnip were dug up.

Harvest: Leeks Blue Green Winter = 4oz = 100g; Parsnips Halblange = 6oz = 180g.

9th March 2012 – Allotment Plot at MERL – Ella Montt returned to the Plot, the anticipated sunshine was absent and the sky was dull grey. In the garden last night at another location Ella Montt had gazed at a large Moon, it was white and full, small clouds drifted through across the sky in formation. The sky on this particular night was a thing of exquisite beauty, the Moon a spectacle of infinite eternity. Beyond the Moon in further regions, many light years a way, new stars were forming. Back on Earth, the air that surrounded the Plot had a delicate refinement that was devoid of all moisture content.

At the Plot shoots of Garlic were starting to emerge. Broad Beans were not apparent. The Onions looked weak. Ella Montt harvested the remaining Leeks and then removed more Mint Rhizomes. The Sage plants seemed to be dead so they were dug up. Where the herbs had been removed, Rocket and Beetroot seeds were planted. The Bamboo wigwam was dismantled. The long Bamboo lengths were cut in half so that they could be stored in the rafters of the shed. Stones were gathered in to a wheelbarrow and dispensed to the wild part of the garden amongst the trees.

Harvest: Leeks Blue Green Winter = 5oz = 150g; Herb roots (Mint, Chives, Thyme, Sage, and Strawberry) = 3lb 1oz = 1.48Kg

14th March 2012 – At another location, a Sweet Potato was placed in a glass jar filled with water.

15th March 2012 – The day had started of shrouded in chilling fog, which had the gradually melted away to produce an almost cloudless light blue sky. At Allotment Plot at MERL the soil was very dry. A huge Bumble Bee murmured close by, it was in search of emerging petaled flowers. Ella Montt planted three rows of Broad Beans next to the Brick Composter. These Beans were replacements for ones that were planted in the Autumn to overwinter, which had never appeared. Next five rows of Peas were planted.

Seeds Planted: Rocket Esmee; Heirloom Beetroot Flat of Egypt; Broad Bean Superaquadulce x 1 row, Supersimonia x 2 rows; Pea Meteor x 60 seeds, Kelvedon Wonder x 60 seeds, Ambassador x 60 seeds, (Mange-tout) Oregon Sugar Pod x 60 seeds and (Edible Podded) Ezetha’s Krombek Bluaschokker x 15 seeds.

19th March 2012 – Allotment Plot 326 – It continued to be dry, a drought was in full effect. There seemed little point in planting seeds at Plot 326. The overwintered Broad Beans were gradually being nibbled. There was evidence of mouse activity. Garlic and Onions were slowly, slowly growing. Ella Montt demolished a mound of compost, distributed it and then covered the area with tree products (newspaper, cardboard, wood). A blue trap was unfolded, stretched across part of the Plot and then weighted down with wood. The tarp and the tree product mulch were aids in moisture retention, if there was any left in the soil at all, it needed to be contained and restricted from evaporation. Worms were sent messages encouraging their participation in soil maintenance production. Ella Montt had decided the digging needed to be restricted and weed growth hampered. There were no vegetables to harvest.

22nd March 2012 – At Allotment Plot at MERL, it was truly a hungry gap. It would be some weeks before any harvest could be contemplated. Pot Marigold seeds were germinating on the Plot and some Rocket. A Globe Artichoke plant that had been frost damaged contemplated revival. Ella Montt fetched the watering can, a hose pipe ban was soon to be enforced across the land.

24th March 2012 – In the fixed up green house at another location, more seeds were planted.

Seeds planted: Tomato Golden Queen, San Marzano, Rotkappchen, St. Pierre; Sunflower Tiger Eye,  Sunrise Yellow; Celeriac Ibis; Celery Tall Utah; Cabbage (Savoy) Marner Grufewi, Vertus.