My mood oscillates regularly between optimism and despondency . I look around on a good moment and think ‘lovely’. Five minutes later it’s ‘Oh, this is shit’. There is so much that needs doing, and by the time I’ve done a little bit of it and stand back to have a look… it needs doing again. Or something else does. That’s not a moan as such. That’s what Gardening is…
But now I’m going to moan. The Gooseberry Sawfly larvae have arrived again. Anyone who has followed this blog, will know that – alongside the voles, but obviously to a much lesser degree – these insects are one of the banes of my gardening life. Ridiculous really, as I don’t even like gooseberries that much. And if they all descended on just one bush and stripped it of all its leaves and burgeoning berries, I’d shrug and say ‘no matter, plenty to go round’. But they don’t. They would happily defoliate every single bush – leaving me to look at ugly, leafless sticks until next year. That’s not on. So I’ve been transformed into a twice daily caterpillar crusher/ Sawfly squasher.
I used to don rubber gloves to do the squishing, and felt kind of icky doing it. I’ve got over that. Now the gloves are off. I just rub my fingers on the grass before moving on to the next offenders.
And the voles… what can I say?
I hate them.
The 100 odd peas that I’d sown so neatly at equidistant spacing should’ve been showing by now; ditto the parsnips, the beetroot, the carrots. I have five pea plants.
I put my trowel in the row where I’d sown them, and this happened:
I planted out twenty broad bean seedlings; turned my back for five minutes and two of them had been upended out of the ground…and, of course, the parsnips, carrots and beetroot seeds have all gone and I’ve re-sown.
It’s a battlefield out there. And I’m not sure that I’m winning.