End of season tidy up

A bright day with no wind so a good day to take everything out of the shed for the end of season tidy-up.

Clearing the shed

All the tools were given a thorough clean, sharpened and oiled and decisions made about what we really need to keep; it is amazing what has accumulated over the year.

Cleaned tools

But there is still some work to do. The paving round the high raised bed was weeded and the asparagus bed has had a serious dig over. The remaining plants were removed a few weeks ago but a surprising amount of the roots were still left. The plan is to plant fruit in the bed but it needs to be left until we are sure it is properly cleared, we don’t want asparagus ferns growing among fruit bushes.

There seems to be a problem with one of the blackcurrant bushes. The fruit buds should be long and thin but these are fat and rounded which is a sign of ‘big bud’ – a common disease in blackcurrants. If big bud is only on a couple of branches, these can be removed but it looks as if the whole plant is affected so it will need to be dug up and burnt. The disease is caused by a minute pest known as the blackcurrant gall mite. They overwinter and breed in the buds leaving when they open in the spring when they can be widely dispersed by the weather onto healthy stock.

Jobs for next week: Weed round the fruit on the communal strip; Keep the hoe going; Cut the grass edge

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