Friday, 22 May 2015

Some gardening and making the most of my last weeks off

It's been a pretty normal week, well as normal as normal get in this house. I've been busy writing lists, then lists of lists and plans, ideas, buying lots of stuff, carrier bags, gloves, internet browsing for ideas, bridges, willow wattle fencing and so on for the new business so we can hit the ground running as soon as everything is finalised. So far we are on target to take over on the 1st of June, so not long. 

Scleranthus biflorus growing in one of the alpine troughs, a lovely tiny plant

On Monday it was the usual domestic cleaning, tidying and organising day and then in the afternoon once David had cleared his desk we went on a wee shopping trip to buy some things for the new business. As we were in the area I went back to my previous place of work, Binny Plants to buy some shade lovers I want to plant here. After that we dropped some bin bags of clothes at the cash for clothes place, another £6 in the savings jar and then we went to the local tool shop to get some new work boots and tools, it's nice doing some shopping, especially when spending some one else's money. This is all part of our budget and cash flow planning for the business, I'm not having a mad blow out, lol, honest. We popped into the DIY store on the way home to pick up odds and ends and colour charts for the office / shed / shop. I'm thinking a duck egg blue turquoise with darker blue highlights. In the evening I had a night out with an old colleague, it was great to catch up and chat about all my plans for the nursery. 

Big sky view from the local village on our walk

Tuesday, unsurprisingly, was showery, there's too much of that at the moment and not enough heat and sun. However it brightened up as the day went on and Bracken and I got a walk, the 4.5 mile circuit up the hill to the local school and back, I am really going to miss our walks when I go back to work. The walk blew away any cobwebs, but reminded me that this lingering cold is still there and tiring. I went along to the local town to pick up some more essentials for the business, coffee, biscuits, etc. for the workforce / volunteers / drafted teenagers, gotta keep them happy. The sun came out and I enjoyed the drive there and back listening to a new CD. I watered the greenhouses and Daniel and I potted up his courgette seedlings into 9cm pots and moved them to the wee greenhouse. We also did a potato inspection, lots of nice new leaves poking through the soil.

Another big picking of rhubarb from the garden

Wednesday was warm, dry and sunny, at last (it didn't last beyond a day though). Despite still being under the weather with this cold I went out and hoed all the flower beds, those dandelions are not giving up! It is great to see all the plants I planted in the new beds last year coming on, see here, here, here and here, there are a few nibbled by slugs so I have used some pellets to help them along a bit. I moved a lot of the veg seedlings out of the greenhouse to harden up a bit more, hopefully the cold nights are behind us now. Next week Daniel and I really need to get them planted before I go back to work and they get too big.

Runner beans and sweet peas hardening off

I hoed the veg patch on the patio and put some netting up around the edge to keep Bracken out, he seems to think it's his own personal toilet and that won't work with sowing veg seeds and planting out the seedlings! Having cleared a few things out the wee greenhouse I could then move cuttings and seedlings into it from the big greenhouse. It's a constant merry go round of plant moving at the moment. I got some of the hardier plants in pots onto the patio, including my Acer 'Bloodgood' which is looking stunning this year. Once the bench is cleared in the wee greenhouse in a few weeks time I can start sowing the huge pile of perennial seeds I have. Many of these will probably end up as stock for the new business.

Acer 'Bloodgood' about to be moved out the wee greenhouse

Next lot of seedlings and cuttings in the wee greenhouse

The temporary fence to keep Bracken off the veg patch

Some sunflowers planted at the back of the veg patch

Veg seedlings waiting to be planted

Thursday morning and we had another meeting and a look around the nursery, my list of things to do once we get there is growing, and every time we go over I notice more things and have more ideas. In the afternoon I took myself off to Livingston for some retail therapy, a few things for me, birthday presents for my nephew and brother in law, things for the business and the food shopping. There were lots of yellow sticker bargains to be had in the supermarket, which were shoe horned into the ridiculously small freezer we have to use in this house. Frustrating for a cook, baker and bargain hunter with lots of people to feed.

Our neighbours at the nursery

Friday was a bit lazy, trying to get rid of this cold, slept on this morning for two hours and then pottered about catching up on paperwork, trip to the local post office to post a parcel and came home with strawberry tarts, yum. Eldest son came up on his motorbike, having passed his final test this morning and then granny came up in the afternoon. We took them and youngest over to show them the nursery and exactly what we have let ourselves in for. They were impressed and interested, Granny even started pulling a few weeds. There was a beautiful sunset tonight, I could see it through the trees, I really miss my open views from the last house where I could photograph sunrise and sunset with nothing in the way. 

All in all apart from the cold it's been a good week. Have a great weekend, happy gardening, enjoy what ever you get up to.

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  1. I am on a catch up with blog reading and have just read about your new venture - how exciting and just the right time of year to be taking over. I will raise a glass to you on the 1st June and wish you luck and happiness for the future xxx

    1. Thank you Fran, that is lovely of you, exciting times and hard work ahead, I may need a few of those raised glasses myself :) x

  2. Lovely photos, especially of skies and tiny flowers. You have a good crop of rhubarb there - lots of rhubarb crumble ahead, I think :) I recently made rhubarb and vanilla jam, which was good. Sounds like you've lots of work to do - hope your cold gets better soon :)
    Cathy x

  3. Hi Cathy, thanks for commenting, yes exciting busy times ahead, but I like a challenge. Rhubarb pies and crumble I think, no rhubarb jam lovers in this house unfortunately.

  4. You've had an extremely busy week Rona - I hope the weekend has been a relaxing one before you have to go hell for leather at the nursery. Although if you've had a beautiful weekend like we have, I doubt it very much. Finally some heat - thank goodness!
    I wonder if you'll ever get to the bottom of those lists or if they'll be never ending ;)

    1. A busy weekend Angie, yesterday was glorious and today was cooler again and overcast, but dry at least. I live by lists, but it does mean I get things done, I'm sure there will be bottomless lists, short term lists that do get finished and then new ones that take over! Next week is a long list of stuff to get done at home before I start at work.