Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Dark days (turned good), stalking potatoes, rhubarb, and the Black Dug. Funny old day.

So today, (bright but cold, wind still striping skin from unwrapped up individuals with no thought to its owner, thanks for asking!) started a bit 'meh' as my peedie youngling uni chap would say. A kinda black dog day. Thoughts of impending greenhouse sitting and trips to the lands of the trees couldn't even lift my spirits. Like I say, a kind of black dog kinda day.  So I tried to draw it out on the beach, like a sad flower. They don't suit being sad do they?

We all (probably) have them. I'm prone, especially when the weathers not great. But today was particularly bad, the kind of day that wakes you up at 4am, just to remind you that you're not particularly funky today and keeps you awake just to make sure you experience most of it. However it turned around, and some. Today was a lucky day, I'm prone to the old black dog, sitting on my chest, but today, as slow at it shifted, by the end of the day, it lifted.  Hopefully to a cosy place, away from folks, just sleeping.
Firstly this lassie had a few things to do at the local 'learning factory' and was engrossed in sorting out seeds and such like for her class (all good) whilst nowt is really sowed yet outside and limited inside, its soon chaps, soon, I promise. OK, in real life, nothing much is sown yet, aside some tender indoor types, but its fun thinking about it all. 

Secondly, this lunatic can't ever stop and just look at a decent tractor with a plough on and not grin like a crazy beast. Ploughs mean the land is drying out, it means soon it will be sowing time and soon things will grow. And they're big and funky and just lovely. Call me sad but when I see fields beginning to be ploughed, I know spring is almost here, even up in the windy north. And, I ponder my seeds just a wee bit more.
So having coveted ploughs, and seeds,  I visited a chum for a blether and a bit of mutual grumbles and smiles and decided to go off and stalk some potatoes at the local garden centre. And, thoughts turn to chitting, we can start that the now, if we're careful. OK so we can't plant them yet up here, but a bit of looking never hurts........and more time outside, no rain and squalls means we can walk and getting out helps lots.
A wee detour for a stomp with the mutts made me literally fall over a heart. I love when folks do this kind of unintrusive art on the maritime cliff tops of the west of Orkney (Yesnaby). At this point you'll understand why my legs are short and well used. Yes, I do a lot of walking, at this time of year if the weather isn't sideways, we walk, like I say it helps, I watch buds, I watch the grass begin to change colour from 'wind burnt' beige to green and the birds begin to sing and some!
This evening TRG (The Rock God) and I walked the hounds over to a wee establishing woodland to have a meander after tea. I love walking after work, its like the days really are longer.
Home to a nice wee fire, a cuppa and a lovely email inviting me for an invite for interview at one of my favourite gardens. Its for an edible gardener post, part time, which suits my gardening and cooking addiction, so please, cross everything for me. Please! I know I'm over enthusiastic when it comes to edibles, that's OK, its how they imparted it to me in the first place.

So life turned out much better than expected today. The weather was kind, a friend listened (Thank you!) and my eyes feasted on free stuff and took my mind of the growing season which others are indulging in now and I'm still dreaming of.

I promise normal service resumes soon, on gardening, which I'd haiver happily about seeds and growing and all that jazz. But, lets be honest, there aint much happening aside a few tomato shoots wrapped up in jumpers, under glass with a heater on sitting looking out at the weather waiting for it to warm up - hardly very tough I'd say. Outdoors its all a slumber (aside the celandine who's flowering and the dandielions who are waking up), even the hardiest of plants, the rhubarb, have not long woken up here. Quite normal, it was only doing this at a similar time in 2011..........and the stuff in the work plots is only looking better due to less snow. OK to Monty and his (27.41 minutes in 'first picking of rhubarb)..........happy for you mate, I promise. But, lets be honest - my work plots of rhubarb are looking a wee bit like this........
I'd hardly say we're in line for a crumble anytime soon? At least those of you in the 'sooth' are keeping us abreast of things to come? But, I'm happy Monty's showing me the way forward, in say a month or six weeks or so...........

PS MR Monty -  Our seasons are nicely different, our snow drops are still mostly fine, and not going over - I guess we win in some ways! I'm not midering, honest, its been a grand day. But life's kinda different everywhere isn't it, we should enjoy it rather than be cross we're missing out?

Gotta keep it a bit positive right?

I learnt that today. I also learnt its OK to say, I'm not good today, really, please listen, I'm not good. Mostly I'm fine, but today I'm not good. I know I dress it up in flippancy and nonsense but sometimes I'm just not good. I walk (alot) I find friends to listen (sorry, alot) and I walk some more, and eventually often I come good, after a while, but even still, I come good.

 I'm lucky often there are folks about to help lift me out of it. If you sometimes suffer from the Black Dog perhaps a look at this will help. My black dog started like a giant and shrunk to a more manageable 'peedie sized' version today. For that I'm grateful, I have lovely friends, but they can only help if you allow them to listen. I've learnt that.

Having a Black Dog Day isn't fun there are lots of folks to listen even if you can't to talk to anyone at home. I hope you find some folks to talk to if you need, to help yours. I'm lucky I've plenty to eat and I'm warm and I've folks around me. I hope you have too.

A bit of (windless) sunshine would be nice too though eh? And perhaps considering 'mainstream UK gardening' documented in southern UK, as an indicator of exciting things to come in the 'north' for many of us. All about perspective eh? 

We're not missing out right now, we're pre-armed and fore-warned. Keep telling yourself that. After all its often a long, hard, dark autumn/winter/about to be spring for those of us in the north. Whilst we're hardy, its a long haul.

There's a reason why The Beechgrove Garden starts four weeks after Gardeners World after all. I wonder if they show it in the north/ upland middle of England and the more exposed parts of Wales too? Probably go down like a dream.


  1. Cracking blogpost, if I may say so. And does the title suggest the names of 5 tracks on an upcoming album?

    1. Thank you Mr P (I can't call you imperfect). Thank you for the lovely comment today and in person on Saturday so lovely to meet you and have a blether.

      I'll ask TRG about potential album track names, he's the music man.

      Might be chapter titles for a book?

      Mind you I'm keen on 'how not to grow stuff' as my main title so I don't think those 5 may work for chapters.......

  2. Great post indeed x I'm not sure if we get Beechgrove in the (Southern) North - must investigate!

    1. Hey Rach - hello! (Absent from elsewhere lands due to ipad cable loss.......) thank you for comenting Beechgrove will be on iplayer...........and its based in Aberdeen so probably more relevant to you lot in the north of England :)

  3. Know what you mean re southern gardening. If I read one more person saying how warm it is and how their plum trees are out on blossom I will scream. I have a garden full fo gorgeous crocus and 1 daffodil and NOTHING ELSE AT ALL!

    1. Thanks for the comment - Its often a bit hard hearing about others being festooned in blossoms isn't it.

      I saw some blossom yesterday (UNDER GLASS) if its any consolation I have TWO snowdrops, two, I ask you where are the other 15 I planted.

      We shall be patient and our blossoms will arrive. (prob MID MAY......)


  4. Blogspot lost my post ... anyway, just wanted to say I'm glad you found your way through, and I hope you're looking forward to that rhubarb :)

    1. Thanks Jan sorry you lost the post.

      I am looking forward to that rhubarb and was heartened (if that's even the right word) to see the rhubarb in a beautiful sheltered walled garden on an island here looking exactly the same as mine.

      If a Castles rhubarb is still slumbering, then mine can too!

      Thank you for popping by

  5. A blether with kind and understanding friends can go a long way and a walk in the outdoors is good for clearing the head. Spring is on its way and I wish you a wonderful day. Thanks for your honesty. :)