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Wednesday, 18 March 2015

They're in!


The potatoes that is. At last the ground had dried enough for Dave to work it, with some effort as it is still a bit claggy. he had dug a trench and places the earlies (he likes to measure, whereas I just bung things in) when the neighbours came round with a trailer to remove a load of rubbish Dave had taken out from one of the unused outhouses. They had already had the coke that was in there, quite a pile but we don't know if we can use it in our fire. They have their outside preserving fire too so will make good use of it. Anyway, when they came round they did a bit of an inspection of the garden so far and expressed approval that the peas and beans had started and the way Dave was planting the spuds. Spuds were inspected to make sure they were the right way up (they had started chitting) and all was well. Bravo! They must wonder where we found the firm, smoothe seed potatoes from though. The norm around here is to keep the small ones from the year before, selling the surplus wizened and long sprouted excess at the market. There are two varieties available, red and white, no names. We have planted five varieties to see how they cope with life in Bulgaria.
The end of the second trench.....

.......very long trenches.

Meanwhile there are ever more signs that spring is up and running....despite the fact that at this very moment the snow is falling yet again. There are more flowers in the garden despite the daffs being very late. The anemones are going great guns now and the vinca is showing it;s lovely blue flowers. the larger peach tree is breaking both leaf and blossom...we were hoping it would hang on a few more days. Raspberry plants are also romping away, strawberries showing new leaves, my chives are up...I really miss them in winter. Indoors I have taken cuttings from the pelargoniums in the hope of making more plants. The first sown tomatoes have been potted on from their coffee cups into larger pots and are looking good, the cherry ones have gone straight into their troughs so they  can go outside on nice days. Also the peppers and aubergines are potted on but I think the aubergines have got a bit cold. hopefully they will pick up. The flower seeds Dave sowed are mostly up and growing strongly, far too many but hopefully someone will have the surplus.

Someone is not happy to see more snow!



I'm quite pleased with how the first tomatoes look

So happy that the landing has proved so good for raising seedlings without stretching them.

The over wintered chilli has been given a hair cut and is definitely a goer
In the chicken house Cagney is being her usual attentive self, happy with her duck eggs but having to be physically taken out and put on the ground to do what she needs to do, dashing around chatting away, from food to water to dustbath, trying to avoid Sevi who is ever rampant and  can never have enough girls. But one of the Shumens is showing signs of going broody and also Chubba. both piled in with Cagney so the door is now closed when she has finished  with the outside world. We can't really let Chubba have chicken eggs, they are not tough enough to withstand her clumsiness, but if we can't keep her from going full broody she might get a couple of duck eggs which are much tougher. The Shumen may be allowed some araucana eggs which are on order (I know, we said we wouldn't have chicks....) and will go into the incubator unless she needs some. She was a good mum last year but will have to be more restrained this year as the chicks were so indepenndent they fell foul of predators as they wouldn't stay near mum. But my, she makes a lot of noise!!!!
Cagney sits tight as the other two pile in

On the left, a rare sight, a whole Chubba egg which Dave practically caught as it was laid. Extremely fragile

Last weekend my new computer had to go into the shop as it was not working properly. We tried to get an exchange but that is not posssible unless the other can't be fixed. Although they have decent reviews, a friend has also had trouble with her's so we are hoping it can't be fixed and we can get a brand we know and have had before. As we drove through Resen we were pleased to see that the storks had returned for the summer, another sure sign that the better weather is on it's way.
Looking dismal....but at least it's a stork!
Martenitsi can now be hung on the tree to ensure a fruitful harvest

We have started to be more sociable in the run up to the beginning of the car boot season...or should I say I am, Dave is always sociable. We have had visitors, visited friends, been out for meals and attended the food fair as mentioned last week. There is a decent stock of chutney, jam and cards ready to go. Dave is going to take a couple of paintings, mainly to advertise the up-coming exhibition, and has leaflets to hand out. It's all go!
Waiting for a train

My friend's lemon...as big as a grapefruit

Lunch in VT, starting with local salads

Followed by trout and chicken

Just had to show the loo in the courtyard, with stunning roof


Wouldn't mind some of these doors!
The leaflets for the art exhibition have arrived in time to hand out at car boots and to friends. Lets hope some turn up to the opening evening for a chat and some refreshments. Someone's getting nervous!
And finally, a little picture of our lovely lab Bonnie....the sun has put a spring in her step and she wants to play!


3 comments:

  1. it's all go at your place. Here's hoping the snow comes down and then melts right away. We still have snow in places but we can now see the gardens here.

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  2. I'm surprised you only have two varieties of spuds - are they not common veg there? Presumably you got some by mail order? I have yet to buy the seed spuds for my 'new' potatoes, of course it won't be me doing the work this year, just the supervision. Although I should be OK for digging them up later on - love that job! Your toms look really good. I gave up trying to raise them indoors as they get so leggy so just buy little plants from the garden centre.
    Food from your meal out looks good! Hoping you will get lots of new ducklings and look forward to seeing them. :-)

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    Replies
    1. You can get more variety by mail order, but garden centres as we know them are not common here. What you get in the markets are literally a yellow fleshed white or a red, and people keep their small ones to sell in spring.They do eat a lot of spuds, but equal amount of rice. And masses of cheap white bread. We have some friends who grow perennials and farm bees commercially and one or the other goes over to the UK for seed stock regularly, this time of the year they bring back a few sacks of seed spuds and fruit trees. So that is why we are growing all five varieties, to see how they perform an an amateur garden. I say we....Dave does all the heavy work.

      I'm happy with the first of the tomatoes and pleased to find a use for all the space upstairs which has very good light. I grow a lot because I bottle so many whole and in sauces, and make gallons of chutney with whatever is available.

      We are looking forward to the ducklings too, Cagney is a great mother. We will need to candle them soon...though I would rather wait and see. We have more eggs set in the incubator...even though we said we wouldn't raise chicks again. More on that soon.

      Keep up the supervising, he'll soon learn haha. And look after yourself.

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