The Balancing of Time is Age Olde.

Fascinating Musings
Season 1 – Friday – 13/01/23

The Balancing of Time is Age Olde.

I have had a hectic week so far. Both of us have, and we are feeling it. Neither of us is as young as we once were, and yeah, sure, it’s fantastic being outside in nature, but it still is exhausting, and more so this winter, given the weather fronts we have experienced. Working on wet grounds is hard work, whatever the weather, but colder and muddier conditions make the whole thing even more laborious. I will be thrilled when everything starts to dry out a little bit.

Monday, we were down at the allotment digging out the blackcurrant bush strip, turning a ton of compost, clearing an aggressively thorny and prickly blackberry bush, shifting wood chips to the allotment from the front gate and making up the new mini-raised beds.

It was raining hard on Tuesday, and l was working on the blog’s post-dated social content. From Wednesday, l was at the reserve in the morning lugging around logs, shifting concrete blocks, heaving piles of wood and moving compost piles, whilst, in the afternoon, Suze and l were back in the client’s garden working on tidying up and shifting around.

That’s coming along nicely, but it can prove to be slower going especially given the amount of water the skies are throwing down on alternate days. Their garden is also naturally moist because it is not far above one of the underground streams and gets less winter sun than we do. This means the grounds are wetter for more extended periods.

The second and third ornamental beds will take the longest to improve as they are packed with not just overgrown plant life but the lousy gardening performance by the last gardener who bailed. These bad practices make it harder for us.

In addition, we are constantly fighting against many self-seeded and bird poop plant varieties, and l have to study and research hard into some of the plants we have in the soils there.

Poop-seeded plant varieties have arisen literally from seed migration caused by birds who, when defecating, drop plant seeds into other locations, which arrive covered in a ready-made fertiliser and sprout very quickly.

It’s not just birds that perform this, but much of the time, it is. A small mammal can eat plant matter and become the lunch for a predatory bird, say an owl who poops and hey presto, you have new plant life.

So there is quite a bit of this in the garden, like the Italian arums and mallow, which can be invasive, especially if you do not want them in your garden. We will have to sit down with the clients and establish if they wish to have the arums removed. I have taken away the mallows as they were overshadowing the oleanders.

Thursday was raining hard again, and Friday, Suze and l will be back in the garden taking advantage of the sunnier weather. The weekend will be busy as we must return to the allotment and recommence on stage two. The shed there also needs immediate attention as it is overflowing and requires severe tidying to improve its functionality.

We also have gardening collections to make of twelve bags of fallen leaves one of the neighbours has gifted us a few streets away so that we will walk those around to our house from theirs. I have purchased second-hand wood from Gazen Salts that also needs collecting from the reserve on Saturday. 

I have enough waste materials alone to fill the second ton bin in the shape of green wastes from various locations of fall leaves, old Christmas trees and the garden trimmings from our gardening job, coffee grounds, bokashi and paper materials – which is no longer empty, so now l have nearly two tons of compost in multiple positions of decomposition.

We need to prepare the grounds for the blueberries to ensure they are more acidic and tarped to protect from weed growth, and l will do that with used coffee grounds and sulphur pellets. The blackberry/raspberry strip needs digging over and tarping.

The raspberries we remove from there need to be replanted into an area that must be weeded and tarped first. We decided to eliminate the weeding aspectation as much as possible so that all fruit trees will be planted through tarp covers.

New covers also need to be made for the mini-raised beds, of which there are now seven, including two two-tiered beds. We will also start to cart the backwards and forwards exhausting journey of bringing woodchips from the front gate to the plot. Each round trip to the entrance and back to the plot is 900 steps, so after a while, especially on wet grounds and pushing a heavy wheelbarrow, it drains your energy levels and becomes more damning when you are tired.

So the weekend will be just as busy as the week, and the following week is looking to be just as active, more so as they are now talking of snow again!

I am either working outside in all the elements, writing various content pieces more often than not in a post-dated style, working the worms, turning the compost or planning cottage gardens – l only have a little time to be social, l have noticed, and l am becoming more and more aloof and distant.

I had a brief thought last month of having another blog for more personal writings, poetry, and things non-gardening related, but l have had to scrap that notion; l would need more time for another indoor project, and as it is, l already have loads of relevant content to write for, Earthly Comforts.

I have six new series and a dozen regular feature posts on my desktop awaiting to be created for the blog, and l am thankful for the evergreen content pieces l created months ago before the blog launched to act as fill-ins for moments like this.

Writing socio-community content like The Morning Dawdler, Wildlife Greetings, and Lasting Thoughts takes less time than researched or long content pieces. One such time-consuming aspect is photography and gallery work; resizing and compressing photographs takes the longest.

Don’t get me wrong, l am enjoying my life outside, it just comes down to that balancing story we all know – balancing time, balancing weather, balancing outside, balancing inside, balancing sociality, balancing writing, balancing life – always, same old , same old.

Earthly Comfort Designs available on my Redbubble Store.

Collections – Earthen Wurmin, Inspired By Nature and The Autistic Composter

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Published by The Autistic Composter

Earthly Comforts is a wildlife journaling scrapbook focusing on the countryside, wildlife biodiversity and environmental conservation, flora and fauna volunteering projects, gardening, composting and vermiculture, inspiration, poetry and photography.

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