Last weekend, James and I finally planted the potatoes that have been chitting away on various windowsills around the house since the beginning of February. At the start of the vegetable-growing year, I often forget that any beds need protecting with a fence to prevent our dogs digging up the tubers and eating them (this is not only disappointing but has resulted in eye-watering vet bills in the past), and chickens scattering the soil to all four corners of the plot in pursuit of earthworms. This time, we didn’t hold back and lashed a strong stock wire type around the spuds. That will keep anything out… Or so we thought. The next day James spotted what appeared to be sure signs of an animal invader – there were prints in the soil that appeared to belong to a muntjac’s hooves. Somehow it had managed to jump In and out of the bed without disturbing the wire. Clever! We’ve now placed some chicken wire over the top – the garden will soon resemble the grounds of a high-security prison at this rate. And that’s before anything else goes into the ground.
Now being on maternity leave from Country Living, I hope to spend some proper time in the garden this summer. Instead of the slightly half-baked efforts we’ve ended up with in the past, we’re aiming to finally produce the abundance of vegetables and herbs that we dreamed of when we bought The Smallholdings around eight years ago! And spend plenty of time sitting back and watching those lovely chickens, of course.
Happy henkeeping all.