Friday, 3 April 2009

Apart from that...

Apart from that, Spring is here, and I've regained my enthusiasm, and am spending hours and hours down the allotment. It's mostly spent digging couch grass, but it's pleasant enough in the sun. I get endless advice from the Italians. One day, I had no fewer than three of them tell me I should be using a fork not a spade. I don't think they realised that my soil is so compacted, damp and clayey that it sticks to a fork, and you just end up with a great big lump on it and break your back.

Anyhow, it's getting dryer by the day, and I can use a fork now, though I still have to spend hours picking couch roots out of each clod. I had a bonfire tonight and burned a dustbin-full. And of course, it's springing up immortal and the top end is starting to look as if I never dug it at all. I'm contemplating Glyphosate (aaagh!), on that end at least, because I'll never conquer it otherwise. I was going to use ammonium sulphamate, only to find it's been banned by the EU, despite being safer than Glyphosate, and is now only available illegally over the internet. And of course it is expensive. The fact is, at the moment I can't afford either, so it's all academic.

Meanwhile, I do a bit a day, and though I've got a lot left that I haven't even touched yet, I managed to turn over a lot before the winter weather got too bad, and that broke down (on top at least) to a fine hoe-able tilth. So I had a good surface for my seeds, albeit riddled at both sides of the plot with lurking weed roots.

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