Saturday, 13 January 2007

Difficult week

I've had a bad week; I had a bad cold, and coping with school has been a nightmare. I had a really hard day on Monday covering art in a difficult comprehensive, then struggled to cope with three days of very intensive work in college. At least the students are an understanding lot. Friday was easier; I was feeling a little better, and just had a bunch of noisy six and seven year olds to cope with.
I got to the allotment today and found the first snowdrops are out; Galanthus caucasicus and a couple of G elwisii, not the ordinary G nivalis varieties. The pic is of Caucasicus, my favourite. It's a lot bigger than the normal ones, and not hard to find. I've planted some Tricyrtis (toad lily) seeds, and found that a pot of Helleborus argutifolius I planted last year are germinating merrily.
The rats have been busy in the shed; a pumpkin has been finished off, and the whole place stank of rodent urine. It's a problem every winter. and the only real solution would be a new shed. The old one is falling down anyway. I put down what poison I had, and if I keep going that should at least limit the numbers.
I've done some more digging on a flowerbed I'm trying to clear, and spread half a dozen barrow loads of soil from one of my mountains. These are great heaps I made in the early days on the plot, when I was digging out vast quantities of turf and weeds. I just piled it up, covered it with plastic, and left it. I've been spreading it gradually ever since, but there's still some way to go. Once spread, it produces massive flushes of weeds the first year, then settles down, and it's really good loam.

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