For the last several weeks, our whole family has worked frantically all weekend and some evenings -- in between our day jobs in Dublin -- to turn our muddy fields into a working crop garden again. We only finished our home a few days' before Christmas and the until recently the fields were either frozen or squishy muck, so we could not start earlier. At the same time, we can't just plant -- we have to rebuild the entire infrastructure of garden beds, topsoil, herb gardens and trees.
We have assembled old scaffolding into four beds, one metre across, one metre high and five metres long, and filled their bases with willow sticks. So far we've filled two of them with horse manure and topsoil, and that second one took my whole day yesterday.
The first bed is planted with rocket, peas, carrots, and several other vegetables – the things that needed to go in most urgently. We also planted a quince yesterday, the latest of our five new trees, and added new beds for the berries – loganberries, raspberries, red currants, blackcurrants and strawberries.
We needed to keep out weeds over part of the land, so we lay down the cardboard boxes from moving. Over those I lay evergreen boughs I got from pruning back the lilandia that ring our property, and over those I will put mulch. The mulch I’m getting free from the county, who chopped up thousands of Christmas trees as a public service.
Finally, we tore down the old fence that had stood along the driveway for almost twenty years, and piled the old wood in the middle of the property for a bonfire next weekend.
A note about this blog: We still don't have broadband at home, so this blog is going to have to continue to post only two or three times a week. Sorry about that.