It’s been an odd year, the first three months were mild, but April was colder and drier than usual and seeds sown directly into the soil not germinate and level in the pond dropped. Despite an adequate supply of clean, fresh water, my dog prefers dirty and stagnant stuff. Whilst in search of this, he took a tumble into the pond, making a dog shaped hole in the lilies, fortunately, the only injury was to his pride and my son’s bed where he collapsed, still coated in black slime.
|A dog shaped hole|
Once the dog was dried out, I broke the hose pipe rule and topped up the pond with 500 litres to raised the level so he can drink safely and gave the vegetables a good soaking with another 100 litres at the same time. Up to now, the only water I have used on the garden has been from the rain water butt. A limitation on the consumption is my ability to carry the water up 50 steps to the vegetable patch which means 10 to 20 litres/day.
A couple of weeks back, I started thinking about a bit of the garden which is always dry, the soil is thin and it’s against a wall. As every blog should have a graph, so the first step was to take sample of soil, weigh it and then use a large cast iron frying pan on the gas stove to dry it, this upset my wife and showed that the moisture content was 10%. The next step was a cycle ride along a path where the council had recently cut down a tree and to scoop up a rubble bag full of wood chips which were then scattered over a bed which had previously been watered. After a week of sunshine, another sample was taken and a further upset to my wife, the moisture content had risen to 27%.
A cucumber and a broccoli seedling have been planted in the mulched bed. Whilst the threat of draught has been reduced, that from slugs has increased. I’m curious to see what happens.