Like others at this time, we are looking for things to keep us occupied outside of working hours and given that we live on a small finca it’s not too difficult a task. Our foray into the ‘good life’ however does need some balance. Although most areas of ground have been given over to chickens, fruit trees or vegetable gardening, o/h (other half) decided that he would seed a patch of mud/stone/weed and this area will thus be known as the croquet lawn, giving us an area to enjoy our g & t’s in the sunshine.
Having already spent a happy half hour on the tractor last week ‘preparing’ his chosen area for said croquet lawn, I sat under cover from the rain yesterday watching him dig out some of the regrown weeds. The day of course was an optimal day for seeding a lawn. It had rained in the morning and was to rain again later on. The first job of the day had been to use our one trip out a week in these lockdown conditions to go and get a new gas bottle, which is where he found the perfect grass seed for the job in hand. Now, gardening for us is all about using the resources you have at hand without spending lots of money (which defeats the whole ‘grow your own self sufficiency model’ we aspire to), so I watched as he rolled the newly bought gas bottle across the patch of now very wet mud to give the desired flat effect. I sipped my cuppa in relative warm and dry conditions while he huffed and puffed before standing up red in the face declaring it to be ‘very hard work’, looking at the bottle which now appeared to have half the patch stuck to it.. I nodded in silent amusement and went off to be ‘busy’ inside. Anyway, despite the fact that we will never remove every stone and weed, o/h stated it was flat enough and proceeded to seed the area. He was mightily pleased with his efforts and marked the area off so that our four dogs can’t run happily across it before the lush green grass appears. Job done and I was pleased he was pleased… it will be our little bit of England.
This morning I woke up and took my daily stroll up the garden, coffee in hand to tweak any weeds from the raised bed areas and check that the garden rodents (we all have them!) have not disturbed any precious plants. On walking back to look at the ‘croquet lawn’ I had to stifle my cruel giggle when noticing how busy the ants had been overnight despite the rain. There on the still stony (and if I may say a bit weedy) mud patch were lovely neat piles of grass seed slowly disappearing down into the earth with the ants! I called o/h to look and he watched aghast as the ants continued their work of carrying the seed down their holes… well I thought it was funny. New plan, buy more seed until the ants can carry no more…. but if anyone has a better suggestion that doesn’t involve pesticides to dissuade them from the area, please feel free to let me know.... Watch this space!