Work continues, the weather has been kind but the ground has not! As you can see from these photos the ground is very difficult, it’s not just boulders, rocks, stones and concrete, Tony and Joanne found another conduit with a cable in it. Fortunately they didn’t do what I did to Rev Steve’s cable!
If we had the money we would just build raised beds on top of ground and fill it with imported top soil or compost, but we can’t afford that and it would be a high-carbon solution (lots of fuel used to transport wood and soil). Our aim is to re-use as much materials as possible and to regenerate / generate the soil. It may take a while but “Rome wasn’t built in a day” or as Permaculturalists say “slow and steady wins the race”!
We still want to “obtain a yield” though and the plants we have put in are doing surprisingly well, even if the odd slug has appeared. We have also added some comfrey, a small hazel, mint and some raspberry plants to the collection. Ramesh, ably supported by Rob, has managed to cut some of the grass – we will leave an area for wild flowers to grow in – and this will hopefully add to the composting and help to improve the soil. We also have some alfalfa seed to use as a green manure. Alfalfa has very deep roots that seek out minerals and nutrients deep in the ground and pull these up into the leaves and upper roots making them available to other plants. It also helps to break up and aerate the soil – something our soil desperately needs!
So, we continue to make steady progress. We have lots of issues still to tackle such as access to the garden and water, but I’m sure we will come up with creative and effective solutions. As always, if you would like to help or just offer encouragement, do get in touch.