The Joys of Gardening

Since the rains, the ground has become soft and the mess at the bottom of the yard has been demanding my attention. Yesterday, I grubbed out the tomato plants and stuck in some sugar peas where they were against the back fence. I've already got irrigation down there (nice, nutrient rich, reclaimed water), so all that remains is to build some trellises out of whatever suitable rubbish I can find in the pile of junk the builders left when they built this house.

I needed to break some more ground to get some other vegetables in – onions being the main priority at the moment. After long-term illness, I discovered that trying to turn the soil over with a fork was a bad move – I'm not as well recovered as I thought. I popped a disc cultivator on the back of "Fergus", my 47-year-old tractor, and managed to cultivate about 90 square metres in about 10 minutes, despite working in a confined space that required me to have to reverse after every 9 metres of cultivation.

The effort of raking that much heavy, wet, soil has convinced me that I need to build myself some sort of rake to go on Fergus' three-point linkage.

Fergus also helped me remove a huge stack of weeds and old tomato plants – I just stacked it all on a pallet on the three-point linkage forklift attachment I built a few weeks ago.

I have two punnets of brown onion seedlings in, have a punnet of spring onions to plant, Chinese cabbage (Bok Wong) and borlotti beans to sow – the latter requiring another trellis.

I have yet to work out how I am going to irrigate the onions; I don't think that drip irrigation will give me the coverage and I can't use sprays because the reclaimed irrigation water will a) block spray nozzles and b) being gravity-fed, has insufficient pressure to run sprays anyway.

So that's the garden as things stand; I'm having a rest now and plan to get working on the pea/bean trellises later, if I'm not too stiff to get up again.