It’s our second growing season with a real garden, and this year we’ve actually prepared and thought up a vague plan. Last year we learned that many plants don’t grow so well if they’re just planted out in the garden with little preparation. This year we’re going to the other extreme and unwary visitors are falling over seed trays throughout the apartment: all the plants are being pampered indoors overnight and only taken outside when it’s warm enough not to damage their delicate fresh growth*. Once they’re a bit bigger the more cold tolerant of the plants will be taken out to the ‘cold frame’ in the garden (Three old windows we found in the garden privvy, balanced on some old wood) to grow some more before we put them out in the wilds and hopefully we’ll soon have a production line up and running.

Now I know you are all excited to know exactly what we’re growing: so far the great planting session has included a mass of spinach, on the basis we can eat it and also use it as a green manure, and lots of onions, one of which is sporting the natty headwear pictured**; these and the leeks -if they grow- will also form a final line of defence against the slugs: I’ll use them amongst the leafier plants in the hope of confusing slugs. We also have tomatoes, courgettes, two batches of french beans (one in soil, and the other on damp paper to see which sprouts first, updates to follow), some pumpkins, a few leuttice lettuce even though I still can’t spell it, some Kohlrabi, another batch of courgettes for some reason, and a distinct lack of carrots, so I think last years seeds have probably had it. At some point we seem to have gained two cucumber plants, a tomato plant and another mystery plant which we’re keeping in the kitchen to see what happens. If posts here suddenly stop, it was a triffid. Oh, and an avocado seed, on the basis we’d had an avocado and it seemed a shame to throw the seed away.

That’s it so far, except that the farm shop in the next village called a couple of days ago to say that the potatoes have arrived, so if I can grab a few minutes between form filling and applications (again) I’ll go and pick them up.

I can tell you’re gripped by all this, so I’ll keep you posted…

* Or as Beautiful Wife keeps saying: “I’ve brought your babies back inside”

** It was that or pictures of unidentifiable green shoots.