….. on the subject of cow manure!

After the sorrow of seeing the end of a wonderful old tree, we are picking ourselves up and trying to put some effort into a replanting scheme. I’ve had lots of messages of support, but one in particular emphasised the joy that when something dies in the garden, there is an opportunity for imaginative re-planting. So that is the way forward…………

I went to look at anaerobic digesters this week. It is amazing what you can produce from cow manure! Really take my word for it! It spurred me into having a look at JR’s progress with this fantastic material in the Walled Garden. Below you can see that we’ve got parsley, potatoes and broad beans growing in one of the glass houses.  As you can see on closer inspection of these photographs there is an abundance of cow manure around every plant.

DSC_0043Every broad bean and every potato plant, are growing up through, the magic stuff which has gone through 5 stomachs and therefore has no weed seeds. I can’t imagine why people rave about horse manure, it is terrible for a garden, for precisely the reason that a horse only has one 1.













The winter crops are thriving, like the leeks we bought in France. This is quite obvious…



and some that are not so obvious.  My asparagus are under a thick layer of cow manure and JR has then put black plastic over and finally some potted Christmas trees to hold it down. This is a sort of double whammy to improve the soil and to keep the weeds down.








It is a little sad, but I have to confess that I spent years over-forcing my rhubarb. If it wasn’t for JR I’d be putting my beautiful traditional forcers over the crowns now and we’d have tender, juicy rhubarb in 3 or 4 weeks. Apparently you are only supposed to force a rhubarb crown every other year! There were years when I forced the same crown twice in a season.   As you can see they are doing very well, considering my ignorant efforts of year past and the cold winds. At the top left of the photo you can see some old secondary glazing with black plastic under. This is forcing the weed seeds hard. Something JR has introduced since his arrival in June 2015.










On my way back to the house I thought I re-wrap my lemon trees. They’ll not like the cold wind which is from the north today. As you can see, this row of Christmas trees got a westerly gust at some point last night. DSC_0052



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