More pea and bean structures
A neighbour of mine recently asked me if I wanted to try some wood pigeon. Always up for something new I said yes, expecting a pre wrapped, plucked and oven ready bird to be presented to me. I wasn’t really surprised when I popped around to their house to pick them up. The birds were still fully clothed with all of their limbs attached.
The same thing happened to me a few years back when I was living in Newport, Co Mayo, a neighbour asked me if I wanted a pheasant and after saying yes please, had it unceremoniously slapped onto the kitchen table with its beautiful plumage shining in the sunlight and dead eyes staring up at me. It took me all afternoon to pluck the feathers, retching continuously as I did. This time I was invited into the neighbour’s kitchen where we “prepared” the three unlucky birds.
The horror of it
The whole scenario was akin to a horror movie with blood and feathers flying and made me realise just how much I like these birds. Alive. Wood pigeons remind me of my mother’s garden and I love to hear them cooing in my own back garden and down on the park. It might be a coincidence but since I brought the birds home and cooked them according to a recipe online, I haven’t heard a sound from the pigeons in the back garden. I’m not saying that I have eaten my garden friends, but I think that they know what I have done and are keeping well away. I have realised that this is why chickens either run away from me (or that they try to attack my legs) It’s because they know too. I eat their relatives. I didn’t really enjoy the meal and the lads spat out a few lead shot which didn’t go down well. I think I understand vegetarians a little better after this week.
I love the tunnel. It’s been up a week and I have put all of the seedlings in there. I have also started to dig a few beds. I am not going down the road of building raised beds. The tunnel is built on a giant 12x20’ raised bed as it is so to build smaller ones on top of that would mean the drainage would be too good. I would need to be going in there every day, (maybe even twice a day for tomatoes), and water. By letting the plants find natural water with their roots will save me a lot of time and energy standing around with my hosepipe. I haven’t gone too mad digging the beds; I am expecting a delivery of two eight foot long tables courtesy of the old Fruit of the Loom factory. I had some in the old tunnel and they were great, just the right height and not easily damaged by water or humidity. I like the idea of just digging the soil as it makes the design of the interior so much more versatile. I can change things around at a whim. It’s funny I have this way of thinking. I did write a book of the virtues of raised beds after all last year. I might change my mind next year when things have settled down and I can see where things fit.
I have had so seal up the dummy door in the tunnel this week. The cold wind was relentless and came straight through one side of green netting and out of the other. It’s made a big difference to the temperature and the seedlings seem to be happier.
As per the seed packet instructions I have been planting some seeds directly into the soil. I put in a few rows of beetroot, wild rocket and spinach. A Facebook chum told me that it’s still too cold for beetroot but I think if I don’t do it now then nights will be drawing in. I’ll take my chances.
Just the way I like it
The other thing I have been doing this week is setting up the pea and bean structures. My lad informs me that I always seem to be making these, I agree it does take a bit of time and I tend to make a big thing of it, but I assured him it’s only once a year. The big difference is that I didn’t use hazel rods from the woods. I actually bought pre wrapped and prepared bamboo poles from the garden centre. They were neat, uniform, trimmed, clean and tidy. They were prepared in the very same manner that I would like to buy all of my meat in future.