Nothing Arbitary about The Ary of the Garden Apothecary! #4
Today was the last day of preparation prior to tomorrow’s seed planting – of course, there are still jobs that need to be carried out, but in so far as the major players for soil prep and identification – that’s now been handled and finalised. All the raised beds are ready and all their soils are in a stage where upon they are dusted, manured and mineralised and covered ready for seedling transplanting somewhere in later March and early April.
So on that level l am pleased.
In other areas the work is going to be harder for various reasons … l have to make the wired and netting frames for the 31×31″ raised beds and as a non-practical craftsman this will be difficult. Suze has said she’ll do it, but with her workload and her job and her commitments, Suze is pretty stretched most weekends so this might prove difficult. It ‘s either her doing it, me trying to do it but impatience winning the day or hiring someone handy to do it.
I have to sort out the water butt situation, that is a critical thing of sorts, l need to have the watering system operational by no later than the start of May. Of course, if it would just stop raining for a while so l can work with the existing water that would be great, but we seem to be in a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul. But the back of the sheds has so much work to be done at present, it is getting harder and harder when all it does is continue to rain.
I got out into the garden today at just after 11am, and l had a few big tasks to perform before the next heavy rainfall showers commenced at 2.30pm. They did that almost on the dot – astonishingly the weather office can predict the wet shitty weather with a fine degree of accuracy but struggle with when the sun will be with us properly!
Today’s jobs were to start and finish Turn 10 of the compost heap and to dress and treat the remaining three new 31×31 Raised Beds. Thankfully l managed to do it as well as give the garden a bit of a rake after yesterdays horrendous storm, rain squalls and winds. The growing containment side to the garden is now 90% completed and the only things left to do are to sort the actual container layout with this year’s growing vegetable plans. Which l plan on finalising tomorrow.
At least all the Raised Beds are now ready,. so that’s the main thing…
…. and l have plenty of ‘ bedded ground space’ to plant the majority of the garden out into.
Now something else that happened last week, that not many know about and that was l had a small incident whilst filling the first 31×31 raised bed with compost. Which was ‘whilst forking the compost out’, l hit one of my larger worms and practically cut it in two. Now it did upset me, and regeneration stories aside, l was still upset.
Many will laugh – it’s only a worm, there are plenty of others in the dirt – yes there are! But this was a large worm and despite the myths that worms do not feel pain which has been proved to be nonsense – because worms ‘do feel pain’ and try to avoid it as best as they can – that didn’t make me feel any better! I hate cruelty of any kind – l can’t stop nature being natural, that’s NOT cruelty – that’s wildlife.
But when l am deliberatey coaxing worms from below the ground into my environment to feed and compost for me – l have a duty of care to them. I try where l can to look after my worms and it’s no laughing matter to me. Pain is pain, and forking a large worm in half is painful and so, this got me to thinking along the lines of ‘How do l make the whole process of composting easier for my earthworms?’
So l began a quest in the search for a friendly composting fork other than what l was using which was a pointy beast! I had injured worms in the past, but only slightly, but never nearly cutting one in two! Things had to change.
The change arrived on Sunday in the form of a ‘Potato Fork’ which as you can see below is way friendlier to the earthworms! It has attached to the end of each prong a bulbed metal end which is present so that when you are unearthing potatoes or vegetables like that you do not damage the roots and so, my bulbed ended fork now goes into the soil but doesn’t injure or harm any of the larger worms. of course there is a huge negative to this and that is ..
……. the size and the weight of the new fork. It is bigger than the old fork and is solid metal with more prongs and so it now officially weighs in at almost 4 and a half times the weight of the garden fork. It canes my left arm which is my digging arm, and with the right shoulder in healing mode l couldn’t use that.
The Bulldog as a brand uses solid and stout heavy wooden handles and finely crafted machine parts so – the new bit of kit is a brute a- real weighty beast – but hey – no more severed worms! Happy worms, make great compost, make healthy soil – happily fed worms breed more baby worms in comparison to worms in bits – which yes they will regenerate growth [ish] and come back, but it’s like that movie Pet Sematary – ‘They never come back the same!! Sometimes dead is better!!”
Happy giant worms below…
Anyway, on that note – the 4 part Preparation mini-series is now finished and l am starting tomorrow the first of the seed plantings for 2020!
Catch you later, thanks for reading …
Love YOUR Worms!!