Sunday, May 31, 2015

Tales from the city fringe

On a grey, wet and wintery Sunday morning I sit at my dining room table eating a big bowl of steaming hot porridge and contemplate what I can do with my garden to inject some life back into it. Everything is dying or dead, and all the new seedlings I've planted do not look happy at all. Even the blackberries that I thought were sure winners are looking droopy and weathered. Now I remember why I didn't start planting out the garden last year when we moved in!

Here's what it looks like outside right now.

Less than a month ago I thought I had it in hand. I thought my marigolds would continue to display their rich and fabulous colour all winter long if I kept dead heading them. Here's what the garden looked like at the end of April.

Then the storms came.

I'm rearing seedlings which are ready to go into the garden, but they are all going to die as soon as they get out there, so I'm in a bit of a pickle about how I'm going to manage this.

A punnet of coriander waiting to be planted out.

I did get a good harvest of purple Russian kale - I've planted enough that we've had a steady supply for the last couple of months.

My potatoes however a growing very well in their pot. These started as supermarket potatoes that I left in the sunlight to green up and sprout, and then I chopped them up into cubes and planted them.

Meanwhile, in other news, we reared the last of this season's caterpillars and they've all flown away. This was the very last one.

I waited for 2 days to get a time lapse of her emergence, but alas it was not meant to be. I dropped Kien off to school while she was still a chrysalis, I came back and did a few dishes and looked over to see she had just popped out! So here's a time lapse of the remaining process - transferring fluid from the abdomen to the wings.

Yes, we know we've got an infestation of aphids - it happens every year around this time. They'll be gone by the time summer comes around again and the swan plants have recovered from being stripped bare by the caterpillars.

Right, I've got to get out of my PJs and we all need to get out of the house now that the sun has come out. Kien has just finished his painting, and now its sitting in the the sun drying.


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