A Sunny Day in the Orchard/ Forest Garden

We have had a lovely day in the orchard/ future forest garden. This morning we woke up to warm temperatures, hazy sunshine and this visitor on our bird feeder:

Woodpecker
Woodpecker. We have heard it for weeks but this is the first time we have seen it visiting the feeder.

I spent some time building up nutrients on the lasagne bed. While I was doing that I picked some cleavers (which I know by the rather amusing name ‘stickywilly’) that arrived with my compost from the allotment. When it is young and tender it can be used as a spring green which you can cook like spinach – a little bonus harvest from something that most people just view as an annoying weed.

There was a lot of watering to do today. It really felt more like mid-summer than early April! It was almost too hot to do any work in the garden.

I planted out some broad beans and direct sowed some parsnips, swedes and radishes, then started to create a fence with cut dead stems that I cleared yesterday. The brassicas spent the day out in the open polytunnel again.

Broad beans in a 'lasagna' bed.
Broad beans in a ‘lasagna’ bed. Building up organic matter rather than depleting soil is by far the better option, though in any case, we did not want to dig and disturb the roots of the mature fruit trees.
Fence made from biomass gathered on site. We don't have willow but these old stems do the job rather well.
Fence made from biomass gathered on site. We don’t have willow but these old stems do the job rather well. It is not very strong but it should discourage the chickens (when they finally arrive) from disturbing the seeds and seedlings.

It was so lovely and warm that we all spend the day out in the orchard, having a few drinks and some music.

Guitar music outside.

The dogs had a fantastic time too – though they did get rather hot.

Dog in the orchard Dogs and DaffodilsWe spent most of the day outside and when the temperatures began to fall a little we decided to use the chiminea.

Chiminea
The chiminea – another use for some waste materials.

I hope everyone else had as lovely an Easter day as we did.

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