Friday, July 24, 2009

Our Play Garden in Winter

Our little play garden has pretty much been lying fallow over winter. We'd meant to put a green compost crop in but time rolled on and it hasn't happened yet.

The rhubarb is doing well. It's in the first year so we haven't been able to harvest any yet.

We transplanted some of last seasons strawberries and have put another ten crowns in the same bed - all snuggled under a layer of peastraw as winter hasn't finished with us yet.

We're probably a bit late with our garlic but we always think it's worth a crack trying new things. We put some shallots in as well.

Hubby built me a weeny poly house for my seedlings out of bits and pieces we have lying around. He'll pop a shelf or two in there next.

In the meantime I've started my spring seedlings: broad beans, roquefort beans, sugar snap peas, purple broccoli, rainbow beets, spinach, thyme, sage, borage and allysum. I'd like to try capsicum and chilli in the "hot house" as we've never had any luck with them here.

We're going to put a quick mustard crop in the community allotment, then "The Three Sisters" - corn, beans and squash. The whole venture is a great learning curve about soil quality, crop rotation and what our local seasons support.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Not My Knitting

Look at my Dino Boy!!

I'd love to take credit for this handwork, especially as I had determined that colourwork would be my skill to learn this winter. But this is the cleverness of my Mummy! The colours are making me very happy in this gloomy, extremely wet weather. The boy is buzzing and has christened himself "King of the Dinosaurs".

Saturday, July 4, 2009


My love for Sharon Astyk seems to know no bounds at the moment. I loved, loved, loved her recent commentary on Handwork. My handwork doesn't make me feel particularly virtuous but I felt a terrific sense of validation after reading this;-)

A brief excerpt:

"My grandmother told me that when I was a grown woman, I would live my life in a sea of labor that was done each morning, and undone before I went to bed. I would wash the dishes and cook meals, only to see them eaten and the dishes dirtied again. I would wash clothes, dry them, and see them back in the hamper. She observed to me that it was necessary that I learn to do something that “stayed done at the end of the day.” She was telling me how important this was to her, and she wanted very much to pass on the knowledge.

I was 10 or so, and I truly did not understand what she was saying to me. The life she portrayed seemed alien, distant and unimaginable. Of course I would end each day with some great accomplishment. Of course my work would stay done. I wasn’t going to be concerning myself with dishes and laundry (I think I thought magic fairies might do these for me), but with great events and great deeds - dishes didn’t figure into it. So why on earth did I need to know how to knit or crochet? How could such small things ever matter? I would never, I thought, be the sort of woman who needs, at the end of the day, to rest quietly and work on that one thing that will not be undone. I assumed that my grandmother was simply being fusty."

My latest piece of Handwork, finished last night while sitting companionably next to The Hubby, is a tea cozy for I7. She doesn't own a teapot yet so Mama gets to use it;-)