With the first week of February already gone you can really tell the phenological seasons are shifting. This is ever present in the garden and can cause so much confusion on what jobs need doing at any one given time. Especially in most recent years where the weather seems to of just gone bonkers. Nature tends not to care about the so called seasonal rules and times set by humans, as someone who grows as much as possible I find that I pay more attention to the phenological seasons, and then the astronomical, more so than the meteorological seasons.
The sap in trees has started earlier than when I was younger, planting in the garden tends to be later because it’s so wet, and then in the summer it gets that hot it can cook your salad whilst it is still growing. The weather also impacts my health, and my ability to do carry out the work that needs doing. With all this in mind this year marks the first year that I have to fully adapt things so they work together rather against each other.
Spring has been showing signs for a few weeks now and you really can smell it in the air. In that time and indeed the months before, we have seen a little snow but so much rain that It the garden is now beyond water logged. I do not have many paths going to the trees to prune them, which is usually the only winter job that needs doing. The chickens (when not in bird flue lock down) keep on top most of the pests and growth of unwanted plants that continue to grow. They also keep the ground turned over and fertilised. There isn’t I can really do right now to be able to get them back out onto the garden but it won’t take them long, once they are allowed back out to clear it.
When it comes to tree trimming it isn’t safe for me to climb a ladder with a chainsaw anymore. Lack of money and covid means I have not been able to get someone else to come and do it for me in two years, and my goodness they really do need to be done this year. This job just got a lot harder as it means that I am going to need to use the hand saw, rope, and hopefully the help of my youngest.
Jobs that can be done this month in short bursts, that do not require standing on the garden are pretty much just clearing up after the winter storms (even though we’ve got more coming), moving things around to make more growing space, moving fences, getting plant pots out of storage, oil, sharpen, and maintain any tools. I have made a start on moving a couple of fences but this week I have mainly just been planning. This involves staring into the garden while having a nice cuppa, watching the birds, and then writing a few notes down.
If I had a greenhouse I would of given everything a clean and got some seeds already planted. But I don’t. What I do have is a bathroom that gets like a greenhouse and windowsills. I have already sorted through my seeds, and made a list of anything I would like to grow this year that I will need to buy or trade for. I have normally made a start on planting and bought my seeds by now. There isn’t anything I can do about it right now though and I have only just been able to afford some potting compost. Seeds don’t usually take long to catch up so I am not too worried about it right now. Give it a few weeks and this may be a little different.