A View From They/Them Greenhouse; We’re All Non-Binary Now…..innit?

In All Its Glory!
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Things are moving on apace. The recent spell of decent weather’s seen a growth spurt right across the board, so much so that I have most of the tomatoes in the ground and there’s been little need for overnight fleecing up. I’ve played a bit of a game on myself, apart from maybe half a dozen plants, which I have no idea of the seed origin, I know (broadly) the type (if not the actual breed) of my tomato stock. I had them all labelled up and I was going to (at least try) keep a check on what I planted in each row. Turns out that was just too much faff for a rough old gardener like me, so, instead, I’ve planted them without looking at the labels and we’ll see what we see when the fruit begins to appear. I’m looking forward to it already.

Beans And Bird Scaring Devices
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Planting up of the outside area’s now in full swing, but I have to admit to something of a very basic error. The wall in this pic is at the south end of the plot and it’s where I’ve put the peas, beans and purple broccoli. The more northerly end of the plot is taken up with potatoes. Next year (all things being equal) there’ll be an horticultural “reverse ferret” as the northern end of the plot gets the best of the sunshine at this time of year. I’m not saying spuds don’t need a bit of warmth, but I’m sure “les legumes” would take a little more benefit from the longer spells of light. I don’t suppose it’ll end up too detrimental, but I won’t really know without having a comparison. As of writing, there are fourteen healthy looking “heads” of potato above ground, with more likely to follow any time soon.

Meet The New Vine, (Almost) Same As The Old Vine
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

I’ve probably mentioned taking a couple of cuttings from the vine. There always used to be two grape producing vines, but one died back several years ago and although the remaining older one’s in what appears to be rude health, I thought it might be judicious to have a second one, if I could get one from a cutting. I took four and they all sprouted, I’ve installed one on the south facing fence of my eldest daughters garden and put this one in the greenhouse. For a while it didn’t seem as if it would do much, but I put it into the ground anyway and this is the result. More grapes means more grape juice, which can’t be a bad thing, especially as I’m not getting any younger and the health benefits (allegedly) are many fold.

Impressive Strawberry-ing, If I Say So Myself
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

I’ve not only been a little bit obsessive about the strawberry “plantation”, I’ve also been a little too self congratulatory over the plan to keep the weeds down and the fruit from rotting following too much contact with damp growing medium. I’ve noticed one or two leaves dying back and it struck me that the time consuming (sparingly) watering of each individual plant may not be the win I thought, at first, it would be. I was right but I’ve given both beds a proper good soaking and I’ve figured out how to manage the job, every couple of days during warm spells without too much mess or waste. Watch this space for updates, but, all in all, they’re generally still doing very well. Potential disaster averted!

The First Dozen, Fingers Crossed
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

These twelve have been in the ground for about ten days now, the wire hoops, courtesy of Dave (forester Dave) and his pre-move clear out were installed to support the fleeces for overnight-ing, but I only actually utilised them for three days. Fingers crossed, because one should never count ones chickens, but, given we’re in the end days of a Kataklysmik Klimate Krisis I doubt very much if I’ll ever see a frost again in my lifetime, never mind this Spring and Summer. Knowing my luck, though, it’ll probably snow tonight!

One On One Levels Of Care!
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

One of the downsides (if downside’s the right word) of getting the tomatoes in a couple of weeks earlier than I usually would, is having to be careful with the watering. Cold water, straight from the hosepipe, would likely be too much of a shock for them, so I do them individually using water decanted from recycled feed tubs which has had at least a day to stand, allowing the chill to come off it. It makes more work and I doubt I’d have given it much thought before the debacle of a couple of years ago, but I find myself caring a little bit more about plant welfare these days. Hopefully it’ll all be worth it in the end, with lots of bruscheta, breakfast feeds, salads, the odd tomato tart and soup as the end product.

Capsicum Corner Constructed
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Ignore the few weeds, they’ve gone now, but the tarpaulin did the job and this will be the site for the capsicum plantation. As of this last weekend I had twenty seven viable chilli and pepper plants, a mixture of red pointed peppers and mixed bell peppers along with jalapeno, cayenne and habanero chilies. I know it seems a little excessive, but I have someone who’ll take any excess fruit, in exchange for things I don’t grow and I do intend to make several different types of chili jam and dipping sauce this year. Sadly, I haven’t managed to get any of the Cuban “Aji-Chay” to germinate. I grew four plants last year They’re very prolific and although they’re quite mild they pickle well. I kept seed back, but nothing came of it, hopefully they won’t be much missed, although the ones I do have in mostly have a bit of a kick to them.

Saturday saw the annual snooze fest that used to be called “The Eurovision Song Contest”. An unremarkable event, unless you’re one of those people who actively enjoys having the piss ripped from you by twenty or so scantily clad degenerates trying to “out-shock” each other and two or three reasonably voiced balladeers, making up the numbers. I only mention it because of a post I saw on social media, made by an Irish academic, referring to everyone’s favourite “queer, non-binary, Ouija pop star witch” Bambie (they/them) Thug. Everyone I know sees this young woman as nothing more than a narcissistic chancer on the make. Even they/thems name is carefully contrived to (as they/them no doubt see it) shock and challenge. There’s nowt challenging about it, it’s a game as old as “pop music” itself. It used to be called a gimmick, but gimmicks are now old hat, no longer part of the zeitgeist. Unfortunately for Ms. Robinson (for they/them isn’t really called Thug), the more they presented themselves to the media the more they confirmed what just about every sane person had already gleaned. I’ve no doubt they/them’ll enjoy a little bit of notoriety in the months to come, but any fame will be short lived and (unless I miss my guess) obscurity beckons, unless Simon Cowell takes they/them under his wing. Any road up, this is what (when referring to a publicity shot of they/them, in all her Satanic regalia) the Irish academic fellow had to say “This is a picture of Ireland today, and I love it. After decades of brutal theocratic rule, unspeakable abuse, and maltreatment, the stunning Bambie Thug has risen from the Irish ashes of hypocrisy like a Phoenix”. You can judge for yourselves how much of this word salad is profoundly meaningful and how much of it is hyperbolic rhetoric. The much needed social and political heroes of the west won’t come clothed in devils horns, shrieking pop tunes and weeping crocodile tears because they couldn’t beat the Israeli contestant in a singing contest. They’ll need to have a little bit more about them than that.

© Colin Cross 2024