You thought I would never mention it again didn't you. Well I just have not been able to get on the land.
I spent almost all day working in my garden, of which there is quite a bit. I have mostly raised beds. 2 x 3 railway sleepers long, 1 x one railway sleeper long, 1x one and a half sleepers long and one triangluar one made of sleepers. They take quite a bit of time to do but at last they are shipshape.
Whilst out in the garden I was working in bitterly cold conditions, with a number of snow flurries, and a wind that made the wind chill factor almost unbearable. All this work culmulated in an estate car full of dead and pruned foliage to get rid of up the allotment, so I managed to persuade Pat to help out with the heavy lifting.
After a lunch of red snapper and half of the last garage stored pumpkin (the rest are in the freezer) we loaded up the car and set off.
If I thought here was cold - then I was in for a shock up in the open fields. Rather ususually the tractor boys were up there today - I have never seen so many people up there - well there are not many of us, but you know what I mean. There were two sets of old fathers and their grown up sons, mainly all talking and another couple of men - talking.
I took some photos so you can see how it is going - or not as the case may be. But it looks so neat up there for a change. The first time I have ever seen it looking like that. Mainly because the plots up my end have now been ploughed. Nothing in them, but they look neat. You can follow their progress over the year with me!
Here is the view from near the bottom end of my allotment across to those next to mine.
As I mentioned the men often go up there for a just a yarn and that's it, or to twiddle with their various machines. We just went up there to dump the compost and foliage, but we didn't hang around to long!
My broad beans that survived an assault by rabbits, then once I had managed to keep those out, the pheasants had a go at them, then once I put up scarers and kept the pheasants away - look - the freezing temperatures, snow, thick frost, and minus 8 degrees at night have burnt some of the leaves, and turned them brown. This time last year it was so mild that the daffs were out, all my potatoes and peas were planted too.
Look at the soil - now frozen hard again and dry. Crazy weather indeed.
Some bulbs that I planted last year are making a brave entrance. See how stony the ground is - Norfolk is well known for its flints. They are a nightmare!
A sedum just forcing its way through the soil - bet it wished it hadn't in this weather.
A flag iris putting on growth albeit slowly, and that is despite a rabbit taking a bite out of it. You have to be tough to survive on my allotment I can tell you.
Surprisingly this Phormium from tropical climes, has grown from a small cutting I took last year and survived the winter! Amazing - so why can't the broad beans!
I went to pick some broccoli leaves for the chooks and found that the wind had knocked down one of the inner netting supports and the pesky pigeons have stripped the leaves off a whole row of broccoli - it makes you want to scream. The hours I spent on my hands and knees in the summer each day picking off caterpillars! Still they only got the ones on either side, there are some in the middle they couldn't reach - yet!
And lastly - I have been forcing some rhubarb to make Schnapps for Christmas presents - but even that has refused to be forced in this weather.
Ah well - that is the fun and challenge of living in our wonderful country and what makes us hardy huh?