Darkening Days

So now it feels as if Winter is really here as the light starts fading at about four and there is no time after a full day at work to do anything outside at all – even in my new and quite wonderful greenhouse. This is a recent and very exciting acquisition which will open up many opportunities when it is finished. Currently, there is one side of staging and a shelf above it waiting to be fitted. The staging is already covered with small plants and seedlings for the plot (and sale) next year. The hurricane oil lamp and the paraffin heater don’t lighten the dark enough for me to work outside in the evening yet, but in Spring it will be very different.

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My snazzy new greenhouse: a work in progress

As the wind bowls and buffets around the house, the gardening is largely indoor – coaxing the paperwhites, crocus and iris into flower before next week’s Farmers’ Market at Wolvercote to sell on our Homesown stall. It has been a stop start process as some buds have pushed energetically up and others, planted at same time in the same conditions, are stubbornly refusing to produce any green shoots. We will see…

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Iris and crocus shoots appearing in their terracotta pots

Need to get to the plot to blanket the dahlias still in the ground and continue tidying up, planting tulips and mulching. Simply stepping outside the door and resisting being blown over by the wind is a challenge today. It is also wet and murky which means armchair gardening such as ordering seeds and dahlia tubers is much more attractive. There will also be a little tweaking and peering at the bulbs to assess their minute progress.

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Paperwhites in lots of bud

It would be good if tomorrow the wind had calmed and it stayed dry so that I can push myself outside and pot on the sweetpea seedlings which are germinating well in the  unseasonal warm weather.

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