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31st July 2015

To Walter Degrasse

Dear Walter,

Ticking over. Or rather, ‘just about coping’ in Old School Garden, this month. In fact I’ve just spent 11 hours wallpapering our stairwell as part of our (it seems, never ending) decorations, and just dashed outside to take some pictures so that you can see how the garden is looking. It was quite a surprise as I haven’t been out there seriously for a good while. Still, things don’t look too bad, proving that nature can take good care of herself! (I did pull up a few large weeds, though).

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The harvest continues with good crops of potatoes (I will dig up the second row of Charlottes over the weekend); strawberries; raspberries (though the Autumn Bliss seem, once again, to have put on no flowers towards the back of the row); courgettes; calabrese; onions; and our first squashes (New England Sugar Pie- just hardening them off). And the greenhouse tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers are doing splendidly I’m mightily impressed with my new aquaponic growing system for the tomatoes which seem bigger and more plentiful than I’ve ever had them. I’ve sown some carrots and parsnips recently and these seem to have germinated and now require a weed. Also, the apples and pears on my ‘super columns’ are really plentiful. I’ve also managed to summer prune my trained fruit bushes and planted out and netted some cauliflowers and purple sprouting broccoli.

Though it’s been quiet in general in the garden, I have managed to do a bit of tidying up- especially resurrecting our fire pit. Though we’re away a good deal in the next couple of months, perhaps we’ll get round to using it before autumn sets in.

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About this time last year (and for some time before that), I was complaining about moles in the garden, especially how they wreck the lawn. Well, as I hinted recently, I bit the bullet and got a pest controller in. He set around 10 traps and caught just two moles (the body of one, complete with trap was taken away in the night, probably by a fox). Though I feel a tad guilty about killing these little earth movers, it would appear, for now, that mole activity has ceased, so I shall be raking off the remains of the mole hills and cutting the grass in the next couple of days, hoping that we’ve seen the end of the damage; at least for the rest of the season.

The last of mole hills?

The last of mole hills?

Well, old mate, sorry that there’s not much new to tell you, but you know its been full on with the decorating in the last few months, so the garden has taken a back seat.

WP_20150731_20_11_41_ProAll the best for now,

Old School Gardener