Sunday, May 06, 2007

Hoe, Hoe, Hoe - No.2 in an occasional series of favourite tools.
I like all three of these, for different functions, and like to see them shiny, indicating that they've been put to work, seeing off weeds in a cloud of dust. The long Dutch hoe is from that well-known purveyor of gardening tools to the gentry, Wickes, but I've no idea where the others came from! My favourite is the short-handled onion hoe, which is as sharp as a sharp thing and really effective at "slash and slice".

Allotment activities today? In a packed schedule I

  • hoed
  • weeded and tied in the blackberries
  • planted out 12 Parsleys (flat leaved)
  • got rained on (but not enough)
  • forgot to take the mouse-proof tin for teabags, but it didn't matter because I
  • also forgot to take the stove to boil the water anyway. Duh!

Chesterfield Canal Wildlife Hour
In an hour cycling along the towpath this morning I saw:
  • 2 swans a-nesting
  • 4 herons a-stalking (well, actually the same one 4 times; started to look really grumpy as he kept having to a-stalk a bit further away each time)
  • 1 moorhen chick a-having what looked like its first outing in the water. Very small and very low in the water, with much anxious a-fussing from mum, and
  • 1 vole, not so much "a-questing through the plashy fen" as a-scuttling hell for leather across the path.
No partridges, no pear trees.


David said...

For boiling water on the allotment, we have a Kelly kettle. It serves several purposes: it's contained fire, and let's face it, there's a bit of pyromaniac in all of us; it boils a litre or so of water very quickly; it provides a way of getting rid of those odd bits of wood (yeah, like really...).

If we're not in a Kelly kettle mood, there's always the 35 year-old Super Bluet Gaz stove that sat in my Mums garage for 30+ years and still had gas in it when I came to light it a few months ago. The Gaz stove also works for bacon sandwiches on Sunday mornings.

Gordon M said...

Brilliant. I've seen pictures of Kelly kettles and they do look good. Where did you get it from? Do you have a picture of it in action?

David said...

This post on my blog has a picture at the bottom of the kettle in action. You can just make out the flames coming from the top. I think Caroline picked ours up on eBay. There are dozens listed at the moment but I think they're all new ones. Ours was definitely second hand, but there's nothing to go wrong with them as log as they're not too bashed about.

Gordon M said...

Thanks David. ebay it'll be!!

Caroline M said...

If you still want vines, Wilkinson's had some for £4 each (and bare rooted soft fruit for £1). No variety names, the grapes came in red or white.

Gordon M said...

Thanks, that's helpful