The little mower who could (not)

Whilst I’ll be the first to admit that I let this grass get out of hand, it’s not looking like I’ll get this done today.

The ground is still too wet. The grass too long. It all gets chewed up in the blades. I stopped when I noticed smoke..!

Unsure if that means it’s broken, but it’s going back into the shed for now!

Buy cheap, buy twice

This isn’t the first time I’ve seen a “good” deal and gotten in trouble for it.

This watering can was three whole British pounds from Morrisons and is worth… well, probably £3.

I bought it because my current watering can only has a single spout. This isn’t good when I’m trying to not drop many litres per second on my tender plants. The spout here creates a lovely rainfall effect which was exactly what I wanted.

However, in the few days I’ve been using it, it’s gone wrong in every way that it could have.

The white plastic head has fallen off. It’s gotten jammed with a few petals. The entire spout has come off. The thin plastic of the can nearly buckles whilst I was holding it (admittedly unusually).

The worth of buying this is that I’ve realised some things to look for in my future purchases.

  • The top handle and side handle is very important.
  • The spout needs to not block easily.
  • The spout needs to not fall off.
  • It needs to be fillable without my needing to get my hands wet when dipping it into my water bucket.

Air Bug and Bee

There’s a small section of the garden which I’m sort of leaving to do its own thing. There’s actually a large area of the garden that’s currently doing its own thing, but this area of the garden I’m just leaving to be as it likes.

That seemed like the perfect place to put the newest of garden ornament we have; this bug home! It was given to us by Tim’s parents.

We’re both very excited to see what it’ll bring to the garden! Its ground dwelling, so I’m expecting smaller beetles and and bugs which aren’t scared away by the plastic creepy crawlies attached. I’m unsure if it’ll bring many solitary bees, but that’ll be fun if it does!

Regardless of what comes, the hope is that it’ll be filled with predators to pests.

Transferring the first seedlings

Back in March I added some seeds to my propagator, and some of them had started to grow tall enough to move to a larger pot. Today, I decided to move out the rest of the growers to let me recycle the propagator with another round of seeds.

The sunflowers appear to be growing the best. The peppers did not grow at all – in fact they failed with such a high failure rate it must have been something about the conditions I gave them that they didn’t like. The tomatoes have been moved to larger pots with bambo to climb. This all happened before today, leaving only the nasturtium and remaining marigolds behind.

The first of the videos I hope to add to this blog. It’s entirely out of focus.

Pots one through four has nasturtium in them. Having looked again the the packet, nasturtium looks like it could be grown quite closely together, so I possibly could have gotten away with two in each pot. Number four actually has two nasturtium in, as one was kind of weedy.

In number five I packed a couple of the lesser grown marigolds.

Despite what I said in the video, I didn’t use Black Plastic Pot for the marigolds, but I did pack them all into Grey French Bucket. A smaller vesel, but BPP seemed too big to fill with soil for those tiny plants. The marigolds are tightly packed now, with only a few centimeters between each. I’m assuming that fine. We’ll find out. (“I’m assuming that’s fine… We’ll find out.” should be the tagline of this blog.)

All the repotted plants are now in Tiny Greenhouse.

As a bonus piece of news, as mentioned in the video, I bought a potting table from Wayfair. I think I only paid around £32 for it, so it’s quite cheap. The assembly instructions recommend a drill and two people, but I managed it on my own with only a screwdriver and a bit of creative positioning. It hasn’t fallen over yet.

Working in the dark

During the winter – and in fact for the start of spring – by the time my work day was finished at 17:30 it was already ten minutes past sun set. Fortunately, this pushed backed and back each day, but the only real jump was when day light savings kicked in; the first time I’ve actually appreciated it!

However, until then, all I could do was work in the dark.

These are the working conditions I’ve been working with throughout February and January. The only light source was a light from my conservatory.

On a trip to Wilkos I also picked up a torch and spotlight, which is working quite well. For such a cheap thing, it’s holding up and gives a good amount of light. At least enough to cancel out my shadow when I have my back to the main light. It’s not the easiest item to place or position.

Even with the torch, getting much further than the patch of main light was tricky. For that reason, that patch of garden that’s visible in the photo is the nicest pruned in the garden now.

Whilst weeding away, and turning the soil, I tended to listen to Radio 4 shows, like Just A Minute and The News Quiz. Unfortunately, having just moved into the area, this might have given my new neighbours the impression that I sit in my garden at night, grunting and laughing loudly to myself uncontrollably. One particularly memorable segment that highlighted this was the “nuts” lecture on The Unbelievable Truth which lead me to have to pause the podcast and sit on the floor for a few minutes to recover.

Cheap tools

I proudly bought my first gardening tool; a trowel from Bargain Buys, or Poundland, or some low cost shop. I think it cost me 59p!

It broke immediately. It just snapped in half was still half buried in the ground. Huh.

I’ve since been to B&Q and spent about £3 and that’s going much further than this one did.

(The picture is dark because it’s part of my working in the dark series!)