You’ll be pleased to know I’ve stopped flapping. Slowly, slowly my heart has caught up with my body. Little by little the jarring exhaustion of constant newness has given way to gentle wonder.
Our new house was built in 1932. Before it became a rental property it was owned by a couple called Stan and Peggy. Stan was an incredible gardener. The garden here is long and thin (as you can see from my sketch), with a path down the middle. In his heyday Stan grew fruit down one side and veg down the other. Every year he planted his runner beans where there is now a patch of thin grass and we have set up our bird feeder. One day Stan came out to dig his potatoes. He’d not been feeling well for a while. The job done, he put down his spade and went and sat in his chair in the lean-to. Stan never got up again and that was the end of his wonderful garden. The greenhouse was dismantled and the fruit trees grubbed up.
I only found this out after we’d got to work. We suspect some rotting wood chip that had been put down on the ground nearest the house, and smelt like a cat’s litter tray, gave Little Owl a vomiting bug so that came up and we built two raised beds there instead. A greenhouse base frame had been left sharp edges exposed, so we turned it upside down and made a third raised bed. In these we’ve planted raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb, gooseberries, blackcurrants, peas, beetroot, spinach, tomatoes, kale, and pumpkins. It’s great to be growing our own again, or at least attempting to. I hope Stan and Peggy would be pleased too.