Sunday, April 23, 2006

Two days of hard work

Our garden now - covered in crates and bags of topsoil!

We spent the whole weekend in the garden. Yesterday it was beautiful weather and today wasnt that bad either. The plan was to get the veggie patch that we dug ready for final planting. However, when we tried to put a spade into it we realised that we have a clay soil which has turned into almost concrete! Aparently when clay soil is dug it gets very hard. It was going to take so much back breaking work to improve it so we decided that raised beds was going to be the answer. However, we are on a pretty tight budget so we couldnt afford to spend much on wood for raised beds. After much discussion we worked out that we could modify the crates that Steve gets his CDs delivered on to make the frame work for the raised beds. Steve set to work knocking peices of wood out of crats to make square frames. But we needed wood panels for the sides of the crates. Well, we pulled off some panels from our fence! The neighbours built a bigger and better fence than ours so our one is redundant now. Also, we nailed the chicken pen sides onto this fence and are going to grow climbing plants and veg up it anyway, so it wont be visible. Steve spent many hours over the weekend banging and sawing with these crates. We are very proud of our self-sufficient, recycled veggie beds!

In this photo you can see Steve making the raised beds from crates, but you can also see the missing fence panels and the chicken wire hen-pen sides for growing beans up.

At the end of the day there was a lot of wood scraps lying around so Steve decided to make a fire in a metal bin. The fire wasnt catching so he had the bright idea to throw a little petrol into it. In doing so he set fire to a big plastic bucket and the soil! By the time I got the camera the fire was almost out.

Two peas in a pod? Luke loves watching Daddy make a fire. That is in fact chocolate all over his face, not mud or ash!

Luke helped me to plant the seeds for growing his own sunflowers. We also planted a lot of other seeds too. We ran out of seed trays, but in true recycling style we managed to find something else to use. Steve bought a huge lot of Hannibal box sets. Not many people want a Hannibal box set. So he took the sets apart, sold the videos for 50p, sold the sounds tracks for a lot more and dumped the boxes. But we were left with about 200 plastic inserts from inside the box set. Steve kept them in the garage as he was certain they'd be useful for something. When I told him I'd run out of seed trays he was delighted and offered me the hannibal plastic inserts! So we used them.

Here is the days planting. We have 6 tomato plants, 4 strawberries. Then all the seed trays. The small black square trays on the left are the Hannibal box sets.

Here is Luke watering the seedlings.

Whilst all this was going on Jude finally grew tall enough to ride the bike we bought for her birthday 2 years ago! I had to take a photo to comemorate the occassion for her :)


Grandad said...

Very interesting site. So ecologically orientated.

DAVY said...

Hannibal box sets -- is there anything they can't do?

Hazel said...

Thanks Grandad! Hope youre feeling better now :)

Marian said...

Did you get top soil?

Davy said...

What was Marian doing up at 1.59am?

Hazel said...

My Mum never sleeps.
I know 'some of us oldies' need to be in bed by 10 to be able to function the next dat though ;)