Slicing up the Plot

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“Like cutting a christmas pudding” was how Philip describe soil conditions this morning as digging commenced in bright sunshine.

The results were “like World War I” according to Bill, referring to a 3 metre long trench at the far end of the allotment.

Admittedly, it was only a couple of hours digging. That was to save the back. For the rest of the day my left shoulder has ached and I know I’ll wake up tomorrow with a sore lower back.

After all the advice over the last 6 months I wasn’t quite sure how to get started. How about defining an edge of the first bed? That seemed a good enough idea so that’s how it started.

The spade went in fairly easily. On only a few occasions did I encounter difficulty. A couple of nasty tap roots and a bit of a metal rod. Otherwise, the spade sliced up the soil nicely even if it was into large pieces of xmas pud.

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But, before I got into full swing Bill came over and offered me his chicken weed clearers (for the umpteenth time).

“Sure” I said.

“Well, I’m an old man so give me hand.” He then muttered about me being a strong, young man or something. Obviously his eyesight is very poor.

The chickens managed to escape when we tried to move the coop so that put paid to that idea. Digging could then commence.

The plan evolved and eventually there was a defined spade width and deep trench. It was a little curved as I had forgotten to bring a straight edge.

There was plenty of breaks to pull out chopped up roots and other debris. That was possibly more damaging to my back.

One piece of advice that has sunk in though is that the plot is riddled with some horrible weed that will takeover if left unchecked.

Convolvulus, ground ivy or bindweed. Take your pick.

Diligently I picked out bits of white root. There’s much more to be done. The slices of christmas pudding need breaking up and will no doubt contain lots more roots. There is also clumps of grass and unidentified growths to sift through.
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Now here is a good sign. Big juicy worms.

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