Late Autumn in the Garden
Nature still amazes me regularly. My garden is a neglected mess, which I attempt to give love in the fleeting moments I get. A bit of compost, mulch and manure gets added in this moments, but it's soon gone and I just try to appreciate the few crops I get, knowing how much I've failed to nurture them. Then from this neglected and often under watered mess I'll get something truly astonishing that's somehow thrived where everything else gave up and just desperately went to seed to ensure generational survival instead:
We are in the second month of autumn and the weather is cooling. We've still been getting some temperature rises and have only recently started to get some rain on occasion. I've been cutting the plum and mulberry trees back, retrieving this year's branches as they escape through the top of the run and chopping them down for mulch. The quails eagerly pick through them for any bugs hiding among the leaves.
The modification of this section of the runs has been completed and they are now all stepped away from the border fence. Hubby added a gate either end of the access way created, so I can let the rabbits run in there.
Unfortunately, I don't know when the final run can be modified as hubby is now back in work and won't have as much time to do the alterations. So I've planted sugar snap peas in the vacant run and dropped some broccoli seeds in as well, ready for the winter growing season.
It's actually unusual for me to be getting them in this soon; I'm usually running much later with winter planting. I've also put a few potatoes in front of the peas, but I still need to get some more potatoes in...and onion seeds...and coriander seeds... and carrot seeds...and more garlic in...
I was chatting with @ligayagardener the other day about the root knot problem in the central garden bed. We discussed marigolds, noting that they only work to eradicate the nematodes if they burrow into their roots, but he suggested that mustard acts more in a way which should fumigate the soil. So I've bought some mustard seeds which I'll use like a green manure crop to fumigate between plantings moving forward, probably letting some go to seed each season ready for the following season. The next challenge is to actually plant them...
I've been trying to share some of the chillies around as our plants are still producing more than we can use. I've invited a couple of people to strip the bushes, but no-one seems game to take all the Trinidad Scorpions, so most of them are still sitting pretty on the plant.
The chicken runs look like they've been having grand feather pillow fights and the chickens are all in varying stages of moult and moping.
Queen Ginger's new feathers are now growing in nicely, but she's a hard moulter and our biggest sulker when moulting. She goes off her food, climbs into the nest boxes at night instead of going on the roosts, then complains loudly when you pick her up to move her onto them. She sounds like a mini dinosaur.
Wisp is still in earlier stages of moult and looks a mess, which is obviously my fault! Meanwhile, Aphrodite is photo bombing because she's not even sure what's happening as her new feathers start to grow out of random spots in front of her eyes.
While Wisp's sister, Echo, is sporting pristine new feathers and frowning down on the paparazzi which failed to bring any tasty treats.
This actually ended up being a shorter catch up than usual, which goes to show just how little I've been getting done. So I'll leave you sheepishly at that and hope the chickens entertained better than I.