Thursday, December 28, 2006

The chest of drawers left outside the house has gone already. Three bags of books taken to the charity shop, all the recycling done. This suspension between Christmas and New Year has galvanised me into clearing a few corners, making some space. I will not make a list of resolutions but I have been sticking loose photos into an album. I'll be sewing buttons on shirts next, going back to the knitting that I haven't touched for months.

The street is quiet, friends are away and I've managed to avoid going anywhere near town where no doubt it's sales mania. But this damp, still, suspended weather has done wonders for the soil and digging at the allotment has been a pleasure. I've even discovered some garlic and have been thinking about the planting scheme for spring. Some of my purple sprouting broccoli has survived the slugs and there's some self-seeded spinach looking healthy and luscious, along with a few remaining leeks.

Two cats visited as I dug the other day, a well fed black tom and a pretty little tortoiseshell. My favourite weeding is the herb patch. I was given an allotment book for Christmas and it's given me renewed enthusiasm, as well as determination to grow on a lot more under plastic this year because there's no doubt that seedlings stand a better chance of survival from slugs if I bring them on first at home and transplant. I'm going to try chillis this year for the first time and want to grow some different varieties of squash because they seem to love our soil.

Borlotti beans will be a definite repeat, too. They were prolific, as were the potatoes and the french beans. I can't wait to start planting.